First Lines: I hear the first wave before I see it — Hear the rumble of the sky that reaches down to the belly of the sea, hear the clouds that appear out of nowhere. The churn and curl inside themselves in big gray mouths across the sky. The sky that up to a few seconds ago was perfect and blue.
While admittedly (and perhaps quite obviously) The Little Mermaid was not my favorite Disney movie, I do find myself drawn to stories of mermaid. I think that has to do with my being a self-described duck when it comes to water. I love it. And I think I used to dream about being a mermaid, living in the water. So there’s some deep rooted love there. And really, am I going to turn down a story about vicious mermaids?
Tristan takes swimming seriously. It’s one of the only things he’s good at, and it’s part of why he became a lifeguard (the other part is watching girls in bikinis strut their stuff). When a terrifying storm surprises the Coney Island coast, Tristan doesn’t think twice about jumping into the dangerous waves to save someone. But that’s only the beginning of Tristan’s troubles. After surviving the storm, Tristan discovers he is the grandson of the merfolk king…a king who is old and ready to hand his trident to a new king. Tristan is to be his champion in a tournament for it, but is Tristan strong enough to be the next king?
I thought this was a pretty fun read. It’s quite funny and there’s a lot of interesting characters and mythological lore. That’s always a pretty compelling combination.
Tristan walks that line between a good guy and kind of a jerk. If we weren’t hearing the story from his point of view, we probably would believe he was a shallow jerk. But we’re not, so we don’t. We see why he does what he does and how he usually has good intentions behind it, but something happens to make him seem like a jerk. He’s got a good heart, is what I’m trying to say.
Other characters also play a great part in this story. Layla, his best friend, is the brains of the two. She’s logical and inquisitive. Kurt and Thalia are mer-siblings sent to teach Tristan what he needs to know about the merfolk while discovering what life is like for themselves on land. It’s quite funny to watch them try to fit in from time to time. There are a whole host of other characters that I simply can’t do justice to here. You’ll have to read it to know more!
Ok, so the lore was pretty awesome too. I love when a story can weave its own mythologies into a story and this successfully did that. There’s also some quite awesome action sequences that take place.
This is one of those stories that I believe boys will also read if given to them. Tristan is no James Bond or Jason Bourne, but he’s more like…um…clearly, I have to brush up on my action heroes…let’s go with Spiderman. Yup, let’s go with Spiderman: a few cool powers, a girl he fell for before he had powers, and a heavy responsibility he isn’t sure he can handle but tries anyway. Actually, that seems to fit pretty well.