Castle Swimmer S1 | Review
Updated: May 4, 2022
Rating - ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
"What happens when your entire life is ruled by a prophecy – your future foretold by people you’ve never met, who died long before you were born. Such is the story of two young sea creatures. One believed to be a guiding light for his people, a Beacon who will lead them to a bright, prosperous future. The other is a teenage prince for who’s destiny is to KILL the Beacon so that HIS own people might thrive.
When both reject the course set for them, it leads to a raucous adventure as big and unpredictable as the ocean itself – and a romance that nobody could have predicted."
Castle Swimmer is a fantasy webtoon by Wendy Lian Martin.
This was just everything. I knew before going into this that I was probably going to love it, and I am thrilled that I was not wrong.
Let's just dive right into it so I can gush about this.
This was written pretty well, with good dialogue and the perfect amount of it given on a page. The transitions between the chapters were pretty good, though the main characters were almost always by each others sides so there wasn't much room for a bad transition.
The art is not the best quality ever and is rough around the edges, but it honestly doesn't matter much because the story and character more than make up for it. There were some small details though that I thought might be nice to have, or could be possibly distracting on the other hand.
As this is set underwater, some more bubbles when they spoke and the depiction of motion might have been a nice detail to add, but I don't blame the author for not adding in small things like that.
The story is rather simple, and not too much happens, but not one second was I bored. For the entirety of the season, you are hoping for Kappa to make it out okay. The budding relationship between Siren and Kappa is also a joy to read about. The author also does a good job at not dragging it out too much, especially considering the fact that this takes place in one small place.
The story also presents some interesting dilemma's when it comes to the prophecy. Whether or not killing the Beacon is justified to save your people is something that Siren has struggled with his entire life.
While the story was great by itself, it is the characters that made the reading experience for me because they were fantastic.
The main characters we follow are Kappa, the Beacon, and Siren, the prince of the sharks. In all honesty, I would give everything to both of them because I was vying for them the entire time. The author did a great job making their characters both simple and complex, while also tackling trauma as part of their backstories.
Siren struggles with his role in the prophecy, and Kappa is haunted by something that happened in the past. The author, as far as I can tell, did a good job at making their trauma part of their character, and not a trope or plot twist.
It is not just the main two that were done well, as even the side characters were brilliant. Selkie, for example, is the chaotically wise old character we all need in our lives. Even Skiff, a minor character, had all the reading enraptured. Some of the characters, I am looking at you Nee and Krilli, gave me Emperor's New Groove vibes, because of the sense of humour they had.
One comment I want to make is that, whenever this eventually is complete, if Kappa does not end up living out his dream of having a small house with pretty plants and shells (and with Siren), I am going to be sad.
If you want to read it, and I highly suggest you do, you can do so here for free. Keep in mind though that this is an ongoing webtoon, and you might have to wait a while before it is completed.