Alexa's Reviews > Mermaid: A Twist on the Classic Tale

Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon
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Apr 04, 13

Read in October, 2011

I picked up this book with fond memories of retold fairytales I'd read in the past and loved. I really hoped this book would fit into that category. It did not.

First of all, there was way too much God in this book. I don't usually have an issue with religion in literature (though I can't say many of the books I read contain much in the way of serious religion), but this felt so forced. The princess was hiding in a convent, the mermaid was moved by the sight of the cross, she wanted to be connected to God, she felt that sending her soul to God would make her immortal ... she's a mermaid, for crying out loud! She has no idea what God is and yet she's totally obsessed with the religion that is never given a name in the book. I just didn't buy it.

Secondly, the mermaid was entirely stupid. She was so egotistical. I could not feel for her ... except for when she had her "voice" taken. That part sucked. But really, she wasn't doing anything for anyone but herself, which was too bad considering how everyone was doing everything for her.

I did like the princess, though, which I think you're supposed to do. She was pretty cool, with her interest in ancient literature and peace treaties. And the prince seemed like a nice guy once he got over his anger at the princess because he thought she was a nun ...

I do wish they'd expanded on a few storylines. Like, was Agnes once a mermaid? And was the sea witch once a human? And why the hell didn't Margarethe tell Christopher that Lenia swam him to shore?

Oh well. I'm gonna go read a 1000 page book now. It's that time of year again. I'm gonna look awesome schlepping this thing on Muni.
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