If you have any expectations of what this book will be like based on the cover, throw them away. You won't find a dreamy, romantic, fairy-tale retelling here. It's more like this type of crazy business going on...Recipe for a twisted, dark fairy tale :1. One crazy witch2. Stupid men who think with the wrong head3. Seals (I'm being serious, the actual sea creatures)4. Blank-eyed women who are willing to serve their men Stepford-Wife style.Confused yet? Trust me, I was confused for the first couple of chapters. Once I started figuring out what was going on, I found myself disturbingly aroused uh... scared uh... interested. Basically, this nasty, crazy witch woman can call up seals and cut them open. These seals then pop out these extremely sensual looking women who are willing to cling to the first person they see/bond with. Yes, it's like mail-order brides, except more of a local affair. Needless to say, the men were ALL over this trend. Islander number 1 : Hey Frank, you got your hot seal wife yet? Mine cooks me dinner every night before doing the naked tango with me. Islander number 2 : Nah. The dumb witch wants more money than I can afford. I'm putting in extra hours down at the docks so I can get me a slave soon. Think there's a catch? Of course there is. That's where the story takes a turn.I loved this book but I can honestly say that it won't be for everyone. It does take a couple of chapters to get to the point where you feel sucked in. Because of the confusing and almost dreary start, I could see how some people are going to jump ship before the story gets to a point where you want to keep going because you're bizarrely fascinated with this twisted, beautiful, and disturbing world. I was glad that I stuck with Brides of Rollrock Island because I love books that stray outside of the realm of normal. Anything that isn't cookie cutter tends to earn extra marks from me.This author is shelved as YA but I found this book to read more like an Adult historical fic w/a sprinkling of magical realism. Basically, a more modern (albeit dark) and grown-up fairy tale.