The Mer Chronicles, #1
Self-Pub, Oct 2015
Kindle, 286 Pages
Also available in hardcover, paperback, audiobook
Genre(s) Fantasy, Mermaids/Sirens
Other books in this series
Breakwater #2 This book will be reviewed here on Dec. 15, 2017
I was provided a complimentary copy of this book. I am voluntarily providing an honest review in which all opinions are fully my own. I am not being compensated in any way.
~ Judi E. Easley for Blue Cat Review
What it’s about…
Kate Sweeting and her mother, Cara have moved to Griffins Bay to start a new life. To try to leave behind the grief of losing Cara’s husband. Cara runs the library and plants gardens and charms people.
Kate becomes best friends with Gabriel Blake and his whole family by the sea. His is a family with lots of secrets. And as Kate and Gabe grow up their feelings mature. Finally, they get to spend enough time together in the water to find out what all the secrets mean for them.
But there is one who wants what they have and is not afraid to reach for it.
The cover has a bit of that dark and sinister feel to it that refers to what happens in the second half of the book. But it also has that great siren tail to tell us just what Gabe’s family is in case we don’t get it right away ourselves. And I love that fabulous script used for the title!
The storyline is really good. The whole first half introduces the families and sets up the HEA, then the second half is the crisis with the Prince.
The characters are well done with all the introduction in the beginning. Even the Prince, Peter and his mother, Kenna get good intros.
The pace is pretty good until you get to the part while Kate is held in the castle. It’s so choppy there with Peter not seeming to know what he wants to do or what he should do.
The tension raises bit by bit in the first half each time Kate makes a fuss about not seeing Gabe and you realize how much time has passed. Then when you get into the second half of the book, the tension rises in leaps and bounds with the actions of the characters.
The writing quality is very good throughout the book. It is actually done in three parts, not two as I have been referring to it as. The middle part is the abduction itself.
And this is where you STOP if you don’t want to see any SPOILERS…
The good, the bad, and the ugly…and how much it lit up my life… ✰✰✰✰⭒
The author has a little trick that I’m not sure I like, but she uses it several times. She has something happen and then doesn’t completely explain it until much, much later on. For instance, when Gabe gets Kate to slip off the boat at the very beginning and go swim with him, it’s not until the epilogue that you get the full story of what happened to her during that swim and how she turned out to be exactly what Gabe needed her to be. The situation with Soley, Gabe’s dog was the same way, just not as long a time. We got the story about his delivering the letter to his folks and a bit later we got the story of how Gabe got Soley. Even later we heard from Xanthe why he really needed Soley.
The situation with Aunt Dana and Uncle Will was a bit far-fetched, I thought. First, Uncle Will decides to kill himself and he leaves a suicide list for Dana and goes off to Griffins Bay to jump off the cliff. The merfolk in the area recognize him as being connected to the Blakes and run interference to keep him alive once he jumps. Alive and unaware. The Blakes get Dana and take her to Shaddox Island to rendezvous with Will. Xanthe guides Dana through a total reanalysis of their life, then she and Will are left to have unprotected sex for the weekend until Dana ends up pregnant and they agree to change their lives. Carmen had previously tossed Dana’s pills out the window during the drive to the beach. Would you let someone interfere with your life like that? Would you think of doing that to someone? Yet Carmen and Michael think nothing of doing this to Dana and Will simply because they are related to Cara, who is married to John, one of the merfolk. Yes, it’s great that they saved Will’s life. But tossing out her pills, influencing them to change their way of life, and leaving them sort of tranced until Dana gets pregnant?
I love it when Gabe is cloaking in the palace as a guard and he senses Kate. She senses him. But neither of them can see the other because she’s disguised and he’s cloaking. They both have to go on trust. She trusts him so much that it fills the hole that Peter’s shenanigans have caused. When Peter comes back, he senses that she’s healed and whole and that his chances with her are gone. That’s what leads to the confrontation with Gabe that ends with Peter’s dissolution. When Kenna rushes to feel that last of his dust, she finally understands what she has done to him by raising him apart from her. I didn’t even feel sorry for either of them at that point. They were both so cold that I didn’t have any sympathy left.
There are some editing issues in this book with tiny words that are missing. This is something that I hope can be addressed at least in digital editions.
I highly recommend this book for reading or gift giving. How often does a book about merfolk come along? I’m really looking forward to reading the second book in this series, Breakwater. I’ll be posting that review on December 15th. Just in time for Christmas gift giving!