When fourteen-year-old Luce is assaulted on the cliffs near an Alaskan village, she expects to die when she tumbles into the icy water below. Instead, she transforms into a mermaid. Luce is thrilled with her new life – until she discovers the catch.
This book was immensely well-written with superb descriptions, making for a very vivid image in my mind’s eye. The author has made a beautiful scene of an Alaskan beach and wonderful sea and sunset images, very lovely. She also had put a creative twist on a mermaid tale. Girls do not undergo normal transformations into mermaids, and it takes something very traumatic to get them to change. This novel may be outside of some people’s comfort zones because of the traumatic experiences that led up to the girls’ transformations. There are also the little “larva mermaids” that are ill-treated.
The story is not a very happy one; there are many dark moments and death all around. Luce wants so badly to belong, but she questions often whether she should be with this group of mermaids. I liked how different Luce was from the rest of the mermaids and how she still held on to her strong conscience even after everything that happened to her. The author wrote very strong characters, including a couple that brought up very loathful feelings (I hated Anais).
This was certainly not your typical boy meets girl, instant attraction, get over dilemmas, everything turns out peachy kind of YA novel. There are several issues, including death, greed, and power hungry people, plus there is no romance what so ever. This novel is darker, more complex and deeper than most YA novels. So if you want something that has many layers to it, then this book may be for you. It may have gotten a 4 from me, had it been a little faster-paced. I’m not crazy about slower books; makes me feel like I’m reading slower than I should be. But, all in all it was an enjoyable novel and I will be reading the sequel to know what will happen with the tribe and Luce.
Beautiful descriptions, imaginative, on the slower side, no romance.