L'idea non era male, una rivisitazione in chiave adulta e più "asciutta" de la Sirenetta, ma lo svolgimento della storia e la caratterizzazione dei peL'idea non era male, una rivisitazione in chiave adulta e più "asciutta" de la Sirenetta, ma lo svolgimento della storia e la caratterizzazione dei personaggi sono alquanto prevedibili e piatti. Ad esempio, la protagonista, diplomanda in fashion design, non fa nemmeno un misero commento su abbigliamento e arredamenti medievali, tantomeno dimostra difficoltà ad abituarvisi. Certo, confronto a vedere il proprio cadavere o a ritrovarsi con la coda forse sarebbe il male minore, ma è comunque il perno su cui gira tutta l'ambientazione per cui uno sforzino l'autrice avrebbe dovuto farlo. La fata madrina - che comunque non si presenta bene, dal punto di vista "lavorativo", vista la sfilza di sfortune subite elencate da Leah - ha qualche uscita divertente e simpatica, ma nella maggiorparte delle sue apparizioni la trovo più che altro irritante, nei panni della protagonista non le avrei risparmiato frecciatine e nemmeno qualche sganassone! Eroe in armatura senza alcun tratto particolare che possa distinguerlo dalla massa di tanti suoi simili presenti in altri libri dello stesso genere. L'unico personaggio un po' più credibile e articolato è il prete.
La poca attenzione e cura per i dettagli viene sbattuta in faccia anche al lettore più distratto quando un personaggio lasciato - specificandone il motivo - altrove, compare invece in un posto in cui non sarebbe dovuto essere: • dalle ultime battute del capitolo 16 Royce waved one last goodbye at Christophe and Giles. He’d left them in charge, and that made Leah feel moderately better. • dal capitolo 18 The tent flap opened, light spilling in. Christophe entered, rubbing his eyes, his hair a mess. Leah looked at him uncomfortably and stepped away
E senza ulteriori chiarimenti o spiegazioni per la sua imprevista apparizione.
This is a cute fairyt-... Mermaid-tale! With clear references to the most famous one, but with nice personal touches. Plot and relationships' developmeThis is a cute fairyt-... Mermaid-tale! With clear references to the most famous one, but with nice personal touches. Plot and relationships' developments are quite predictable, but it's an enjoyable reading. It develops like a teenager keeping her diary and gives some good insights of the characters, even if the way all the main human characters act, it's more fitting for younger people than graduating. We can clearly see what they really feels, but that doesn't help Lily to see through her pink colored glasses. But I think it's right for her, to some extent: she's almost eighteen, and even if she has no direct experience, in three years with humans she should've developed a little more understanding. I think her friends and her aunt could've tried to be a little more direct with her, instead of leaving her oblivious of everything she was - and wasn't - saying and realizing. As well as Quince trying to attract attention from the girl he likes making her school-life miserable could be right at first, but growing up three years with her as a neigbour, he should become more mature and direct, especially considering he's already more adult in other aspects of his life, like working to help his mother. If Shannen's so brainiac - as Lily consider her - she should've figured the truth about both Quince and Brody, and help her friend to see things a bit more clearly. I also think that the resolution with Brody was too fast and simple: the eavesdropping is soooo cliche! And after three whole years mooning for the guy, the author spends only a few sentences about Lily realizing the truth about him and her real feelings. The epilogue comes out of the blue, 'cause nothing told about Dosinia suggested she has such inclinations... Yes, she was jealous, and she likes to be under the spotlight, but neither she or the other characters made a reference (view spoiler)[to her being an orfan, and that she was planning revenge against the supposed human culprits... (hide spoiler)]
I loved the idea of using sea-related slang but I find a bit irritating all the clarifications Lily gives about this or that equivalent in human terms: they lessen the magic, reducing the descriptions to some mere technicalities.
Basically there is good potential, but it's not developed (at all), and considering that this is not the beginning of a saga , but a stand-alone storyBasically there is good potential, but it's not developed (at all), and considering that this is not the beginning of a saga , but a stand-alone story [it was when I read it), I'd say that it is wasted potential.
Anonymous style, repetitive plot and predictable story developments, poorly characterized characters, bordering on banal, no worldbuilding and several contradictory passages and elements that leave readers doubtful and interdict.
Let's start with the characters: we can suppose they all have identical physical appearance, 'cause the author doesn't tell anything about it, except for eye and hair color, but only for the very few lucky ones! Sadly, there's no characterization to compensate: secondary characters are just names or nicknames; main actors behave like fourteen-year-old rather than seventeen, a trait even more serious for a two-hundred-year-old male! And they are flat. Let aside the resentment for her mother (a very justified feeling since beginning to end), Tempest does not convey olther emotions. Se says she cares for her father and the brothers, a lot, especially fo her youngest brother, but once she arrives wher she's required to go, she no longer thinks of them (only once, and barely). It's good she scolds herself for not thinking to bring back even a simple shell for Moku! We come to know Mark as the classic good guy - kind and caring, smart and funny - but at some point, out of the blue, he finds himself branded by a bad boy reputation; the only one graced by some deeper psychological traits, he pays for them with the way Tempest treats him, and in the end he has his legs cut out from under him in order to "free" the girl. Kona... I couldn't suffer him more often than not! Due to its age and nature, his position and the experiences related to these three elements he should've been more mature, instead he behaves like an annoying prig, not the least friendly or sympathetic towards an understandably confused Tempest. He always refusing to answer questions, associated with his condescending attitude every time Tempest tried to stomp her foot or disagree with him, it rubbed me in a very unnerving and irritating, unbearable way! And it sounded suspicious as well. In fact, later he always manages to trick her in doing what he wants, so that I'd label him as manipulative and I'd question his feelings'sincerity. He's certainly not a selfless lover. Or at least not one who tries to put himself in another person's shoes (not even his significant one's). Even what should be the emotional climax dosn't sound very romantic:
He reached for my hands, brought them to his lips, and brushed feather-light kisses against each one of my fingertips. “I’m not going anywhere, Tempest. I’ll stand out here as long as I have to. As many nights or weeks or months as it takes.” “And years?” My voice was rusty, my throat thick with tears. “Will you wait years for me, Kona? If you have to?” “I’ll wait forever.” He swallowed and his hands tightened on mine. “But please don’t, Tempest. Please don’t make me wait that long. I’m useless without you.”
And the fact that the scene - as well as the entire novel - completely lacks in irony, does not help to improve the atmosphere with a friendly-sassy-smart note that would make you (at least) smile.
And then there's the big incognita that everyone was waiting for: Tempest's mother, the mermaid most spoken of in the story, and the one who appears only briefly. Cecily is a selfish and hypocrite woman unworth of forgiveness. She was always aware of the prophecy, then she would have had to stay to watch Timarit, rather than starting a family with a human being and then act as she did - discarding them, without contacting or checking on them anymore. Even her final letter is full of presumption (she has no excuses but fatigue, boredom, she is aware of being dead, and that her daughter probably was a witness of her death, and all she has to say is that she's curious! Curious!) and hypocrisy: she advise Tempest to only listen to her own heart, to choose love as it's the only thing that matters, but her last words are a prayer for Tempest to go dealing with the merclan and its queen. There's not even a single word for the man whom she supposedly loved so much to abandon the sea, and her other two children.
Everything seems stiff, forced, superficial and/or random: - Kona is a prince and a warrior, an expert in magic, but he let himself been captured without offering even a minimum of resistance. - Cecily was presented to readers as the most powerful priestess but we find her imprisoned, and her resistance is nonexistent too, she doesn't even try to break free, to help her daughter save their lives. - We knew which destiny was meant for her, but how come Tempest wasn't able to connect the depiction of the prophecy and what she witness, when the only thing she remembered about her mother was exactly her tail and tattoo's color? - We don't come to know how Cecily was captured, if it was herself to let it happen becasue of that same weariness she complained about in the letter (and would not this be another extremely selfish act, since it would force her daughter to deal with the witch?), or something else; neither we come to know why a "young" selkie as Malu was so attracted by the witch, so much to betray his comrades. - Only towards the end we discover that also Tempest's brothers are meant to confront the transformation, and this is a detail that takes away "specificity" as of Tempest being the prophecy' subject. As far as we know, that ancient prophecy is realized in Tempest only beacuse of her first name, a name chosen by her mother: just a coincidence or Cecily already knew? But how would she know right from pregnancy (or even before?) that the colors of her daughter would be exactly the ones to fit the prophecy? - Kona explained that mermaids must earn their tails. So how we can explain the brief appearance of Tempest's tail during the initial near-drowning? - Tempest wears a swimsuit most of the tima, how is it possible nobody seems to notice her gills, even at close range? - What mermaids' tattoos stand for, and why, and where they come from? - The letter Cecily wrote to 11-year-old-Tempest denies her the chance for living in both worlds, explaining that she will be forced to choose between her tail and the mainland. Tempest seems to have made her choice when she returns to her family, but after more than a month she has second thoughts and she can go back without any problem. Too easy and plain an end for this book.
[Even more so now that I know there's a sequel in which Tempest'd go back and forth as she likes some more.]
But my biggest disappointment is related to the setting, because, in a tale of mermaids and sea creatures, I would like to see what features make them special, I want knowledge about their biology, i want to discover their world and how they live, between their own and inrelation to humans. The only revealed thing is that merpeople are long-lived and they prefer leaving Magic leadership to Selkie in exchange to be the fastest creatures of the sea. Each and every main and minor character in this book is related to the sea, but landscape descriptions, and in particular those descriptions related to the underwater world, are few and generalized, without any details or suggestions that would prompt the reader to create an image of this supposed magical world.
What this book left me in the end it's only sadness for those poor Mr. Maguire (forced to settle his loss with a mere consolation, that is also fake), Rio and Moku who are the victims of this story, abandoned by everyone they cared for, and the only ones for which I could sympathize....more