Finally my mermaid trilogy has come to an end! At this point, I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry. While I fell in love with Luce (and Sarah Porter) during The Lost Voices, my annoyance with her only grew through Waking Storms and The Twice Lost. Her lyrical prose that drew me in was still there, but the delicate beauty the story had at first was soon replaced by blockbuster easy-to-predict action that kind of disappointed me.
I just hate how every YA story must revolve around a guy (or two) and how the heroine is influenced by her feelings/weakness for him. I liked the way that Porter ended the series, but throughout the second and third book Dorian continuously pissed me off. DO YOU HONESTLY THINK ANY WOMAN IN HER RIGHT MIND WOULD GIVE UP A MERMAID TAIL SO SHE COULD FOLD SOME DUDE’S LAUNDRY FOR THE REST OF HER LIFE?? NO BITCH, I AM NOT GIVING UP MY AWESOMENESS FOR YOU!
I mean, some girls did end up choosing differently than Luce, but everyone had different reasons for that. I don’t think the reason should be a guy who may or may not love you. That’s just me.
I couldn’t help but feel like The Twice Lost would’ve made a better movie than a book.
Also, during the helicopter scene–when the mermaid were drying out and dying suspended midair–why couldn’t the mermaids who were NOT on “wave” duty start singing a wave to come up and cover the mermaid, or even knock the helicopter out of the sky?? It seemed like the obvious solution and it seemed dumb of Luce (or any of the others) not to think of it.
I still love Sarah Porter and her mermaids, but I have to say I finished this book more out of anxiety than pleasure.
4 larvae of 5
Added bonus: Back in June when we went back to Florida to visit our families, I got the amazing opportunity to swim with one of Eric Ducharme’s tails! (He was featured awhile back on TLC on My Crazy Obsessions. Check out his site here.)
I got to be mermaid for the day for Mighty Mongo 🙂
There’s something very seductive about being a mermaid. Unearthly beauty, half-human, half… other. The power to lure ships (and men) to their doom simply by singing to them. Not to mention, not having work, school, bills, or any of the other responsibilities that tend to make being a human so boring. While Lost Voices by Sarah Porter was already on my reading list, my friend Kathryn and her blog Love Fearlessly inspired me to bump it up a few notches. Oh, and buy a mermaid tail. But, whatever!
LV tells the story of Lucette, better known as “Luce.” She is an orphaned, abused girl that lives with her alcoholic uncle on a craggy island. After she finds a strange child’s corpse on the beach and her uncle goes too far one night, Luce falls off of a cliff–she thinks to her demise. Little does she know that abused, unwanted girls are often turned into mermaids who form barbaric tribes in the surrounding seas. When her transformation is complete and Luce realizes what she has become, she feels more at home with her fellow mermaids than she ever did on dry land. But will Luce ever be able to reconcile the fact that mermaids are murderers? That even she–who’s father’s boat mysteriously disappeared never to return–feels a fierce joy in her chest when she sings humans to their deaths? Not only does her astounding voice put her at odds with the tribe’s queen Catarina, the arrival of a new (very materialistic) mermaid changes the sense of peace she once felt with her new found friends.
Lost Voices was great. Porter did an excellent job of describing underwater life and providing the reader with great visual details. You can almost smell the salt air and taste the slippery oysters on your tongue. (Ew…) I also loved that the whole mermaid experience was completely re-imagined, the same favor Maggie Stiefvater did for werewolves in her Wolves of Mercy Falls Trilogy. It’s always impressive when new authors can breathe life into old legends, and I give Porter mad props–especially since this was her first book. I liked that she had baby mermaids (called larvae) around the tribes, and made them into such heartbreaking, endearing characters since the other mermaids would never help or take care of them.
I did have trouble relating to how painfully shy and introverted Luce’s personality was. Half of her responses to negative stimuli made me freak out because I wanted her to fight. I’d like to think I would fight if I were in her… fins… I also did NOT like Catarina at all and rather than having sympathy for her mental breakdown I just found myself annoyed. I thought both her and Anais were both crazy bitches. But that was the point, I guess. Ugh. Anais… Just ugh.
All in all LV was a wonderful book and I look forward to reading more of Porter’s lyricism and prose. Mad props, girl, mad props. A new favorite has been born.
5 seashell bras of 5
I think we all remember watching the Little Mermaid as a kid. I do. Heck, I had Little Mermaid underwear! It seems as though even after all these years our obsession with mermaids and the aquatic life hasn’t died down much. Living in Florida makes it a little easier to believe in these types of fairy tales. Surrounded by water on three sides, with beautiful beaches stretching for miles–it makes you wonder if the light you saw glinting off the waves wasn’t really glancing off of silver scales. Myself? I never understood Ariel. You want to be part of our world?? Please girl, come sit at my desk while I take your place in the surf. I don’t care much for seafood, but I’m flexible!
Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon is a retelling of Hans Christian Anderson’s classic. It chronicles the lives of Princess Margrethe–stuck in hiding during war-time posing as a nun–and Lenia, the Sea King’s youngest daughter. On her 18th birthday Lenia gets to visit the surface of the ocean for the first and last time (as is traditional for mermaids on their 18th year). She happens upon a terrible ship wreck and saves one handsome (of course) man from drowning. As she tows him miles to shore, she falls madly in love with him–warm skin, thumping heart, along with the idea of his soul (which mermaids do not possess). Margrethe happens to be standing on the beach at the very moment that the strange man is dragged to shore and she witnesses a tender kiss between the two. When he wakes up, he believes the young “nun” has saved him. Too bad he turns out the be the bad boy prince from the rebel Southern Kingdom. Imagine that. Soon after, Lenia visits Sybil the sea-witch to strike a bargain.
Thus ensues a love triangle of epic proportions.
“Souls were webs of light that contained the essence of a human’s life. Memories and loves, children and families. Every moment of a life, pressing in.”
I really appreciated this book. Retellings can be awesome or awful. This one was awesome. Turgeon’s style of writing is very lyrical and poetic and she has a great eye for details. I like how whenever a mermaid would touch a human’s skin, a shimmery trail would be left behind… forever. Is that cool, or what? The way that the two princesses became rivals was set up really well too. Both had so much at stake that I couldn’t help but change who I was rooting for after each new chapter. It was nice to see two beautiful women having respect for each other for once rather than being catty and evil. I liked how Turgeon added a little bit of sex appeal and raciness to the story–definitely not your Disney version here.
The only real complaint that I had about Mermaid was that the whole “love at first sight, marry me now” thing is so far-fetched that it just makes me roll my eyes. I get that extreme romance and true love theme is being imparted…but it’s a little tired if you ask me. But, I suppose that’s also how things worked back in the Medieval Times. You’re hot, I wanna bone you, let’s get married and make it legit. I get it.
Other than VEHEMENTLY disagreeing with Lenia’s choice to give up the sea for the human world, this was a great story. Definitely worth the read.
4 lost voices out of 5