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Lies Beneath

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Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans and absorb their positive energy. Usually, they select their victims at random, but this time around, the underwater clan chooses its target for a reason: revenge. They want to kill Jason Hancock, the man they blame for their mother's death.

It's going to take a concerted effort to lure the aquaphobic Hancock onto the water. Calder's job is to gain Hancock's trust by getting close to his family. Relying on his irresistible good looks and charm, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter Lily. Easy enough, but Calder screws everything up by falling in love - just as Lily starts to suspect there's more to the monster-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined, and just as the mermaids threaten to take matters into their own hands, forcing Calder to choose between them and the girl he loves.

One thing's for sure: whatever Calder decides, the outcome won't be pretty.

306 pages, Hardcover

First published June 12, 2012

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About the author

Anne Greenwood Brown

8 books491 followers
Thanks for stopping by!

I am the author of the following Young Adult novels:

COLD HARD TRUTH (contemporary/romance);
GIRL LAST SEEN (contemporary/suspense);
and the paranormal mermaid trilogy: LIES BENEATH, DEEP BETRAYAL, PROMISE BOUND.

I also write adult romance under the name A.S. Green.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 929 reviews
Profile Image for Kat Kennedy.
475 reviews16.2k followers
April 6, 2012
If you’re any­thing like me then you prob­a­bly spent a great deal of your child­hood pool and ocean expe­ri­ences try­ing to look like this:


It’s entirely more likely that you looked like a drowned rat because the ocean is a cruel, cruel mis­tress who only allows us to live so that she can pro­long our mis­ery.  Just as an aside note, there is a hotel on the top of the Himalayan moun­tains for those who wish to give a metaphor­i­cal “screw you” to mis­tress ocean.   After read­ing Lies Beneath, that might not seem too rad­i­cal a notion.

But I get ahead of myself.  Calder is a mer­maid and along with his mer­maid sis­ters, he meets Lily and wants to date her and get invited home to her fam­ily… so they can tor­ture and kill her father.

And then things get dark.

emo mermaid
Less lame.  More emo.  Less leather.  More evil.  Com­pa­ra­ble amounts of eyeliner.

This is not a per­fect novel, but what it does do well – it really does well.

For starters, it’s dark.  It’s like jaws if the shark were actu­ally scary and could stalk you on land.  I’m exclud­ing the con­cept of land­sharks from this review because the ter­ror of such a crea­ture might over­whelm some of my more frag­ile readers.

The writ­ing is thought­ful, descrip­tive and very ser­vice­able.  My one issue with it was that it didn’t always trans­late emo­tion.  Some­times a con­ver­sa­tion took place and it was dif­fi­cult to gage what the char­ac­ters were think­ing or feel­ing or want­ing or hop­ing.  Some­times a char­ac­ter would say some­thing like, “I’m in the depths of despair!” but it didn’t feel any dif­fer­ent to them say­ing, “I pre­fer Ben and Jerry’s!”

How­ever, most of the char­ac­ters I did like and it starts with Lily who is refresh­ingly prag­matic and not afraid to call a shovel some­thing she’ll use on your frag­ile skull if you don’t stop stalk­ing me you creepy mer­man.  It always both­ered me that Edward Cullen’s (and oth­ers like him) behav­iour is treated as roman­tic and swoon-worthy.  Lily straight out turns Calder down because he creeps her out.  And when she busts him being extra stalk­er­ish, she backs away even more.  She doesn’t have an issue say­ing, “Hey!  Thanks for sav­ing my life but you’re a big creeper so I’m going to go shop­ping with peo­ple I know and trust!  Laters!”

It’s nice.  It’s not the kind of thing you should be in the habit of prais­ing lit­er­a­ture for doing, but unfor­tu­nately for the cur­rent state of YA, we need to.

Calder is a con­flicted, inter­est­ing char­ac­ter.  He’s every­thing you want in your friendly, neigh­bour­hood psy­chopath.  Hand­some, friendly, cocky and able to be redeemed into a non-psychopath.

The whole novel has this dark, murky feel to it.  Like every body of water is teem­ing with death-monsters ready to nib­ble on your unmen­tion­ables.  Maybe even like the water itself has it in for you.

Like I said, it’s not per­fect. The plot and story could have been a lit­tle tighter.  How­ever, over all I thought it was an inter­est­ing, fun read and I’m curi­ous to see how the rest of the series progresses.

Until then, any­one feel like a swim?

evil mermaids
Just let me get my swim­suit.  I left it smack in the mid­dle of the Aus­tralian Desert.  Also, I’m not com­ing back.
Profile Image for Wendy Darling.
1,574 reviews33.9k followers
April 20, 2012
3.5 stars

I hadn't killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that.

So begins the very first good YA mermaid novel I've ever read--and hooray, they're eeeevil, too! After trudging through so many books with insipid mermaids or ones that barely qualified as mermaids, it's so great to read a story in which sea creatures have purpose. And deadly intent. And tails. These merpeople aren't drawn to kill people just for sport, but also because they crave the energy harvested from positive human emotions.

One of the things I find most appealing about the idea of mermaids in literature is that I would love to know what it feels like to swim swiftly and endlessly through deep oceans. What's it like to live under the sea? And if you're part-fish, where does your aquatic side end and your human side begin? That's an aspect I thought was touched on in a very nice way in this book. Migration patterns, animal instinct, the pure physicality of painful transformation, all of these provided an immersive and believable mermaidy experience in a way that I hadn't come across before.

The urge to migrate was irresistible. Far more powerful than the urge to kill. With each rise and fall of the moon, with each turn of the tide, it grew more impossible to ignore.

I also liked the male POV, the push and pull of attraction/repulsion you feel for Calder and his sisters, their need to be near water, and the author's descriptive writing style. I was less engrossed in the human and emotional side of the story, however, including the relationship with perfectly-fine but fairly ordinary Lily, the somewhat flat secondary characters, and the romance. The central mystery/driving plot lines involving a murder in Calder's family and his need to take revenge could have been more streamlined as well--and perhaps the twists and turns hidden a bit better.

I wasn't bothered, however, by a few aspects that will probably drive some readers crazy, including Calder's hunting of his prey, driven by both instinct and human emotion, or something a bit squickier----primarily because I don't think it was handled in an tasteless way, and there is some validity in its origin. Between their cruel, mocking games, careless values, and animal nature, it's not entirely unexpected. I think the author also deserves big credit for the gutsiness in her decision to keep her mercreatures true to themselves, even if it meant that the reader is shocked or turned off by their actions.

It seems that those who have had more scornful reactions to this book are readers who don't seem to read very many mermaid books, so I'd recommend this one specifically for those who love them or those who read a lot of YA paranormal romance. I love the idea of beauty and danger combined in a creature that humans can't seem to resist, so I happened to like this one a lot! And I'm looking forward to seeing where the story goes next.

This review also appears in The Midnight Garden. An advance copy was provided by the publisher.

She Reads By the Seashore

Here are a couple of photos I snapped at the beach in January, by the way! We found all kinds of sand dollars and pretty shells that afternoon, so it felt like a pretty perfect day to be reading this book.

Profile Image for Jo.
268 reviews946 followers
May 12, 2020
2.5 stars.

“Would you please get it into your head that this is not a movie. Forget everything you think you know about merpeople. Forget that freaking Ariel, think Silence of the Lambs, think Friday the Thirteenth.

Initial Final Page Thoughts.
Considering I thought I would absolutely hate this, I’m pleasantly surprised.

High Points.
Boy narrator! Evil mermaids. Lake Superior. Curses. Flirtatious fishes. The Bahamas. BBQs. Hammocks. A lady love interest who wasn’t completely ridiculous. A chance to have every single Little Mermaid song embedded in your soul for the entire you time you read this book. Poetry readings.

Low Point.
OK, I actually only have one low point and I know it’s going sound stupid before I even say it… or, um, you know… write it.
But I’m going to do it anyway, my main problem was mermaids.
“But, um, Jo… the synopsis has-”
“I know!”
“And the-”
“I know, I know.”
“Jo, the main character has a tail.”
I knew this and I truly wanted to believe.
I was the kid who watched The Little Mermaid approximately a million times and I was the kid who used to pretend the back of my chair was a rock and I’d pretend to be a mermaid. I even joined the queue of camera-snappy tourists and stood awkwardly next to the Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen.
The main problem I had with this book was that I wanted more of a back story with these merpeople.
I guess I just wanted to know more. What I did know (and could get my head around) I liked. But I think if you’re trying to sell mermaids to me, you need to make your case flawless.
I wanted to know about others and how you become one and the history of them and do they just live in Lake Superior and the Bahamas or are there merpeople swimming in the Thames? And the Menai Straits?
Also, the ending made me feel a bit “Ick, really?” and even though there was an explanation, it still troubled me.

All that being said, I enjoyed this a lot more than I thought I would. I truly believe that people will love this book and they should because it’s so different than anything out there.
I’m just still bitter that I didn’t grow up to be a mermaid.
I’m a Piscean for goodness’ sake, it’s practically my right.

Oh Calder, mate, we need to talk.
I know you’re a merhunk and you’re from under the sea and I understand that the rules for courting a lady are probably a bit different down where it’s wetter.
And I know you want to protect your lady and see that she gets home OK, but watching her from the bushes? Watching her from the lake with just your eyes above the surface? HER WARDROBE?!
I know this whole merpeople thing is new to me but do merladies really like being peeped at from behind some coral or, like, a shark or something? Is watching from the shadowy bowels of a ship-wreck the height of romance?
Call me old fashioned but I like it when a boy just texts me to see if I’m alright.
Also, reading poetry to a girl so you can get into her kecks? Yeerugh.
How do mermaids even learn to read?! Are there mer-schools?! Mer-universities?!

Love Interest.
Eh. OK, Lily was alright.
While I was reading it I was thinking that she didn’t have much of a personality but actually she did. She wasn’t insipid like some heroines were and she wasn’t completely useless. She was a bit too accepting at the fact that her boyfriend is fish from the waist down and that his trousers smell of kelp, though.
But whatever, he sounds hot. He’s a swimmer and he’s built and he has curly hair. Boom. Forgiven.
I mean, this girl goes swimming in lakes in April (I think that’s when it was set but still, I imagine it’d be a bit nippy no matter what the month!). So she must be pretty hardcore.
She also dresses like a Victorian poet because she likes Victorian poets (long black courdroy skirts and high-neck ruffle blouses... :-| )
Um, Lily my dear, I love superheroes but you don’t see me running around wearing a... um, actually never mind.
*adjusts cat mask and slinks off into the night*

Oh man, now these are the girls I wanted to spend more time with.
Well… um, from a distance.
Because they’d eat me, actually eat me.
But wow, they were cool.
Sorry Calder, but you’re such a wuss in comparison.
I would like a series written about these ladies.

Theme Tunes.
Electric Feel by MGMT.

With the voltage running through her skin
Standing there with nothing on
She gonna teach me how to swim.

Mmmmhmmm, that’s what the kids are calling it now, eh Calder?
Also, mermaids are apparently electric.
Not entirely sure why but HEY, it fits in with my song choice so I’m willing to accept it.
And another one.
Yes, you get two because I’m feeling generous.

Part of Your World by Darren Criss.

Could it be anything else?
Because it’s Darren Criss singing Disney songs.
Do you have any idea how long I’ve wanted an excuse to use one of them as theme tune?! DO YOU!?
Also, Calder has curly dark hair and he recites Tennyson to his lady loves so I imagine a singer songwriter isn’t too far off.

Dear Darren Criss,
Please grow your hair like this again,

Sadness Scale
Wow, I know that is high but don’t worry this book isn’t actually that sad. Sure there are a few moments which are pretty sad but they’re kind of glossed over. I’m not sure whether this was intentional because meremotions are a no-no, but that’s fine with me.
I’ve come to the conclusion that mermaids don’t get sad… they get eeeeeevil.
Which is good, you know, because eeeeevil is always better than angsty.
But the rating is for me.
I thought I understood what it takes to be a mermaid but I had so many puzzling questions after I finished this book that I came to realise I could never be one.
And that made me sad because now I have to seriously reconsider my life plan.

Recommended For.
People who are looking for a book about mermaids that is kinda plausible. People who like to read Tennyson while they’re wearing ruffles. People who make sure they go diving with a hot merman just in case their oxygen runs out. People who understand that not all mermaids have talking sea creatures as their friend. People who can get on hammocks without making a twonk of yourself and flashing the neighbours.

An advanced copy of this book was provided by the publishers via Netgalley.
Profile Image for Steph Sinclair.
461 reviews11.1k followers
March 22, 2012
Be sure to check out an exclusive interview and swag giveaway with Anne Greenwood Brown over at Cuddlebuggery Book Blog!

*I almost dropped this down to 1 star, but then I started reading Starcrossed and realized that wasn't fair.

What a disappointment.

I was looking for a new Paranormal creature to love and thought that could be found within the pages of Lies Beneath. But you know what I found? The same old story we've all read before over and over again. The truth is this isn't a badly written book, but there is nothing special about it that sets it apart from your usual Young Adult fair (I wish I had written my review as soon as I finished the book because it is very forgettable). Take out the mermaids and inset your favorite paranormal creature and you'll find you've been around this rodeo before.

Lies Beneath tells the story of Calder White, a merman, who along with his three sisters, attempt to plot a man's murder. The man, Jason Hancock, is believed to have been the cause behind their mother's death, so naturally they seek revenge. In order to get closer to Hancock, Calder stalks Lily Hancock hoping to befriend her and earn her father's trust. What happens next? He falls in love with her, of course. And the rest, as they say, is history.

This book could have been amazing. It had an interesting premise with evil mermaids that have the ability to transform into human bodies. So if you were wondering how it was possible for mermaids to reproduce... well, there's your answer. Unfortunately, Lies Beneath failed to follow through on a few issues:

The Romance

Why, oh why do Young Adult authors continue to go down the insta-love path? Before Calder even gets a chance to have a real conversation with Lily, let alone get to know her, love was already being mentioned. It's one thing for him to be physically attracted to her, but an entirely different for his sister to suspect him being in love after just one encounter. They had absolutely no time to develop a relationship, so where did all this magical love come from?

*Rubs temples*

 The Stalking

Perhaps some people find it incredibly romantic to be stalked by a paranormal creature. I'm not one of them. I don't care that Calder was stalking Lily because he was on a mission to murder her father. He was a creeper. He literally does nothing but stalk her the entire book. Where does he sleep? In her backyard. Where does her work? At her job. Does he do anything else in the book besides follow Lily around or think about Lily? No. I think her only changed his clothes once or twice throughout the entirety of the book because he is too busy watching Lily day and night.

Then there is the whole business of him finding her delicious. The mermaids in Lies Beneath feed off of human emotions because they can not create their own. So they lure humans into the water and kill them by sucking all their emotions out. I'm going to let you be the judge on if you would like a guy to think of you in this way:
"I'd be trapped with her right at my side for the next several hours--her radiating that succulent sweetness into the air. Tingling on my tongue. Begging to be consumed."

"Once or twice I had the urge to scoop her up and dive over the side of the ferry. But there were too many witnesses."

"What do I look like?"
"It changes, of course, depending on your mood. Today you look like melting orange sherbet. Delicious."

How is that romantic? It is disturbing! Why is this continually romanticized in Young Adult novels? Is it because it's "totally romantic" they way he chooses the girl over his cravings? No, just no. I don't buy that. I will not accept that.


I did not like him at all. Conceded, cocky, pig-headed. I'm not sure why these particular traits are always relied upon when writing from a male PoV, but I grow tired of seeing the same reincarnated characters over and over. When Calder first starts to stalk Lily, he is shocked she isn't immediately taken by him because he's gorgeous and girls usually always fall at his feet without any effort. Of course. But Lily is different and is not impressed with him. So then we have Calder attempting to figure out what's wrong with her because she isn't trying to peel her panties off like everyone else with a pair of ovaries . Gimme a break!

Then there was a really odd scene where Calder is under the sea talking to a dead guy pretending that it's his father. Huh? O_o

The Ending

I predicted every plot twist well before it happened. Nothing surprised me in this book and I think that is partly because the foreshadowing was poorly done. I feel like they were a little too obvious allowing the reader to figure out what was going on before the characters. This was not irony.  Instead, it made the characters appear slow and caused me boredom. I can't even say I'll be picking the sequel up because the ending left me with no desire to continue on with this series.

EDIT: I recently found out book two is told from Lily's pov, so I'm more inclined to give the sequel a shot.

Would I recommend it? No, probably not because I have a feeling this book is one of those "hit or miss" titles. But, I will say that if you are a fan of Hush, Hush, Twilight, Evermore, and Wings this may be up your alley.

ARC was provided by the publisher via NetGalley.

More reviews and other fantastical things at Cuddlebuggery Book Blog including a Review War of Lies Beneath!
Profile Image for Soumi.
Author 1 book378 followers
February 20, 2018
A deadly merman with an avenging heart and an innocent girl dreams to be a poet, when the two different worlds collides, love happens.


Unlike every other spring when Calder was called back home, to the cold water of Lake Superior at earlier than usual, he had no idea Jason Hancock, son of the man who was responsible for his mother’s death had came back too. This could be the perfect opportunity of retaliation to Calder and his mermaid sisters for their mother’s death and end the bargain Tom Hancock made years ago with their mother by snatching the last breath out of his son, just like Tom did to their mother.
Using his extremely good looks and charm Calder was sent to befriend with Lily, elder daughter of Jason Hancock, thus reaching for his actual target Jason, but nothing went right as he planned.

Revenge and rage is dangerous but nothing could have been more grievous situation for Calder than falling in love with his own prey.

Into The Deep

I liked the Author’s richly imaginative power of creating the world of mermaids. The vivid description of Lake Superior evoked lifelike images within my mind. Not many books have a strong male voice behind the story, and in that department Lies Beneath definitely deserves some credit. It felt like I was swimming with Calder to the deep of Lake Superior and watching every movement of Lily. I found the plot very refreshing and actuating, exiting enough to keep you flipping through the pages.

Love Lies Beneath

Bound to the duty of carrying out his mother’s last wish was the only chance for Calder to earn his freedom from his sisters even if it means to hurt the person he loved
A little bit scared and confused yet strong, Calder is an unusual hero different from any other conventional fantasy males, which is why I liked him. Caught in between his relationship with his vindictive sisters and his lady love, Calder went through emotional turmoil but in the end what will be his ultimate choice?
Brought up in a murderous mermaid family Calder inherited vicious nature of killing people and absorbing their energy for his own survival, but he tried to fight off his killer instinct throughout the book. I witnessed his character development and his effort to be a better person which pleased me very much.

On the contrary Lily was capable enough of being resisted by his charm and good looks. When Lily was first introduced I thought her to be a sallow, guess what actually she wasn’t. Yes she was a person of a specified kind, dressed in odd manner and obsessed with Victorian poets but not drama at all. Cute and kind hearted, Lily made perfect pair with our merman. In Water Lily, the next installment of Lies Beneath we will be given the story from the perspective of Lily, and I’m truly interested to get a piece of her mind.

Romance between Calder and Lily picked up speed step by step, developed in a believable pace. Watching Calder slowly falling in love was a delightful surprise. I actually enjoyed the gradual improvement of budding romance that simultaneously evolved with the progress of story.

Family Ties

Coming to the vengeful sisters, they are actually scary in good sense. They know nothing but revenge for their mother’s death and they can step over any thing that gets into their way. Three of them were very fascinating character. What impressed me was their never backing down and keeping the promise attitude. They may be a little creepy but striking enough.
Bond between Calder and his sister was flimsy; no wonder why Calder wanted to get rid of them.

In The End What Does Matter

Motives were dark but his affection for the girl hold him back from doing any harm to her family, Calder had to choose his own path. Unexpected turning in the end, Lies Beneath is not your average mermaid story, it a murderous one. Highly recommended for all mermaid lovers and for the people who thinks they should try at least one mermaid book, I will say this is the right moment with right book and right opportunity.
Who says Not everything is a mermaid that dives into the water , well as you see love lies beneath.
February 17, 2013
Calder is the dumbest, least effective evil merman ever, which makes sense, considering he's the main character in the book and it would not do for a group of simpering teenage girls to fall in love with a guy who would willingly drag them underwater and kill them.

Seriously, he's a male TSTL character. He fails at everything his sisters instruct him to do, seduce a target? Please. He falls in love with her as soon as she blinks at him. Lily is too smart for this dumb POS. I just found myself shaking my head and laughing at his every failure. The plot is convoluted and unbelievable, they're supposed to get revenge for something this one person did that made their mom suffer and die? Too far stretched, even for paranormal YA.
Profile Image for Kay.
197 reviews362 followers
June 12, 2012
***This book was an ARC provided by the publisher. Thank you!***

This is my first dive (heh, heh) into YA mermaid lit. Unfortunately, while I found this new paranormal genre quite refreshing, I wasn't convinced by Anne Greenwood Brown's rendition of the mermaid myth nor was I impressed with the story itself.

Plot Summary

Calder White and his three sisters are merfolk whose mother was killed many years ago. In order to avenge their mother, Calder and his sisters have vowed to kill their mother's murderer's son, John Hancock. When John Hancock moves his family to Lake Superior, it seems like the perfect opportunity to strike. However, in luring Hancock to the lake, Calder must seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. But problems emerge when Calder starts falling in love with Lily and his murderous sisters start to take matters into their own hands.

First, the Good

The book wasn't very bad. In fact, in some places, I felt really engaged with the story and the author's take on mermaids. For example, I found it interesting how the author characterized merfolk as creatures driven not only by rationality but also by instinct. The way the author described a landed merperson's thirst for water was very well done, and she painted a compelling picture of mermaids as more animalistic than human. Second, the author doesn't just let the human-merperson difference become the main point of contention. Instead, she relies on more obstacles, like Calder's quest for revenge, and his conflicting desires for freedom from his sisers and for Lily.

Aside from those points, however, I found some parts of the book underdeveloped.

Main Issues

1. DEVELOPMENT OF MERMAID LORE. I'm not familiar with mermaid lore. This could be because my first exposure to mermaid lore was Hans Christian Andersen's version of it, in all its bloody and tragic goodness. Reading about a young woman ordered to wash her feet in her lovers blood spooked the living poo out of my little kid self and the scar remained ever since.

(In an off topic aside, when I finally watched Disney's The Little Mermaid years later, I spent the first hour in agony, anticipating Prince Eric's refusal of Ariel and Ariel fizzing up into sea foam. Didn't happen, and I felt cheated.)

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Darn you and your black bag of lies, Disney!

Don't worry, I've slapped a band-aid on my early psychological boo-boo since then.

The author of LIES BENEATH borrows elements from both Hans and even older myths to tell her tale. She doesn't sugarcoat mermaids as whimsical, singing sea unicorns. But at the same time, she doesn't develop her own version of the mermaid myth nearly enough and there are enough loopholes in this book to round up a few herds of cattle.

Also, her merfolk seem almost like water bound vampires than primal sea predators. They don't eat human flesh to sustain themselves. Instead, they just suck out all positive emotions to reinvigorate themselves, which kills humans.

This confuses me. First, physiologically speaking, if such a thing were possible wouldn't the victim just become devoid of emotion or maybe even insane? Insanity would have been interesting. Second, Calder seems very emotional, as are his sisters. I didn't see the connection between their state of being, and eating emotions to sustain their state of being.

2. CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT. This is what killed me. The story is told from Calder's POV. Perhaps it's because of this that I never felt really connected to Lily, or for that matter, anyone else in the novel. I wasn't sure whether I should have dreaded the Whites’ confrontation with Hancock because (1) I was sympathetic for Calder's star-crossed romance (I wasn't) or (2) because I didn't want to see the fragile Hancock family broken up by tragedy (honestly, I could have cared less what happened to them). Maybe I'm just heartless. Or maybe it's because none of the characters were really fleshed out. Even Calder, I thought, was not very fleshed out. Maybe it was because all he has his mind on is on revenge, but he felt very two-dimensional.

Also, Lily became kind of a Mary Sue .


3. INSTALOVE. Need I say more? Bonus landlubber points for using excerpts of Victorian poetry to communicate sentiments. They were used gratuitously and quickly became an overkill of word usage to describe Calder's and Lily's feelings for each other.

Overall, interesting premise but very shaky execution. 2 stars, though I haven't given up on mermaid lit quite yet.

Here's hoping that more books will surface with a protagonist that is an actual sea monster-like creature that will eat your face:

Profile Image for ~Tina~.
1,092 reviews159 followers
February 6, 2012
4.5 stars

Wow, I don't think I was fully prepared going into this book. I've been on a search for a good mermaid book for awhile now and it feels really good to say that I finally found one!

Lies Beneath is all kinds of Wicked! Mermaids and Mermans in this book are deadly attractive, vicious hunters and murderous minxes. They seek humans and drain them for an emotional fix. Living off and for the energy and sensing the auras for added pleasure. They are the most beautiful and deadliest of monsters.
Calder White didn't ask for this life, but it's a life he's learned to live in. When his sisters call him back home, telling him that they finally found Jason Hancock and that sweet revenge is finally in their reach, Calder can't resist the pull and soon enough devises a plan to lure Jason into their grasps. Only Calder never planned on caring about his daughter, Lily Hancock. She's a different temptation and sensation that he wasn't prepared for.
Can he betray the only women he's ever cared about? Or will he give into who he truly is?

Anne Greenwood Brown, ladies and gentlemen! Remember that name, cause this is an author worth looking out for.
Her writing is powerfully controlled, bold and effectively unflinching. The way she moved her characters along was like watching a chess game. It was calculating, measured and determined till the very last seconds.
She kept me on my toes just waiting to see what would happen next.

All these characters were so very well developed. Evil is mighty playful and devious when it comes to Maris, Pavati and Tallulah. These girls are dangerous and disturbing and played their parts well.
I love love love that this is told in a male point of view. I don't know why but I find it more honest coming from guys, they usually say it how it is. Calder is my favorite kind of character. He plays the tortured and haunted soul who doesn't want to be a monster and even tries to resist who he is, but his thoughts often betrays him and we see a much darker side to Clader then he lets on. I admire his strength and his goodness and I respect how much he fights the twisted that lives in his very skin.
Lily is a very resilient character, she's good, kind and loves her family. She doesn't swoon on a dime which was very refreshing. Instead she goes with her gut-reaction, caution, wise. I thought it was pretty amusing how hard Calder actually had to work for her affections, you gotta love a girl who can make a man work for it;)
Together they have an undeniable hold that you can't help but fall in love with.

All in all, I thought this was a really great-great read. It has an amazing spin on this particular myth, the writing is remarkable and these characters are exciting, fresh and animated.
oh, and a big shout-out to that ending. I never saw that one coming. At all. It feels so good to read a book where I can actually still be surprised. Great twist!

Dark, edgy and completely mesmerizing! If your looking for a mermaid book, look no further, this book as it all!
I can't wait to read the next book in this series, Water Lily!

Fantastic debut!

(Arc provided by Netgalley and Random House)
Profile Image for oliviasbooks.
774 reviews515 followers
March 3, 2012
“Forget everything you think you know about merpeople. Forget that freaking Ariel, think Silence of the Lambs, think Friday the Thirteenth."

How happy I am that I still have not given up on mermaid books. The strong imprint of my childhood’s obsesssion is still keeping my hope up to find a gleaming mother-of-pearl-treasure among the ocean floor rubble now and then. Rare finds like Anne Greenwood Brown’s soon to be published Lies Beneath justify my unbroken tenacity: Skilled writing, danger, mystery, romance and under-water-action combined with unsettlingly inhuman creatures who - in spite of their inner and outer difference to mankind - do not muddle up the plotline into something illogical or unconceivable, but still leave plenty of room for the reader’s empathy and involvement.

Brown’s mermaids are hollow, envious creatures. Monsters. Like vampires are craving human blood these tail-bearing shapeshifters are addicted to human happiness. They drain couples in love or people enjoying to sail their boats completely of their aura and discard them dead and empty, because they have no means to generate their own bliss and resent their victims for effortlessly flowing over with it.

In addition, they are bound creatures: Physically bound to water – a day-long absence makes their skin crackle and split, visibly bound to their species – by a blueish ring etched into the skin of their necks, magically bound to their family and their family’s territory and mentally bound to fulfill given promises and agreed-to deals. Apart from the mentioned bindings the long-living, alluringly beautiful and super-strong beings are completely amoral and more or less uncivilized: Heroe Calder and his three sisters regularly return to their home, Lake Superior, but when they are not hunting human prey or seafood in the cold water, they sleep in unfurnished caves or drive to places in cars that are not more their own than the clothes on their skins. Calder takes up some work now and then because he prefers to spend his winters alone in warmer waters and needs some money for the plane fare. Calder’s yearning for a solitary life makes him a freak among his own kind. He more or less successfully explains his unusual disposition by the the fact that in contrast to his sisters he has been made not born: His mermaid mother chose to save his life and turn him when he was three. But the thing that really disturbs Maris, Pavati and Tallulah is Calder’s resolve to refrain from killing people as long as he can stand.

Calder’s new aversion to killing has to be quickly overcome, because this summer is the summer of the long-awaited revenge: The Hancock family, whose recently died grandfather is said to be responsible for Calder’s mother’s death, has returned to their house on the shore. Now Calder is supposed to lure one of the Hancock daughters into danger in order to make an easy kill out of their father. Parallel to Calder’s growing conscience his awareness for other aspects of human existence awakens. Partly responsible for Calder’s changing personality is Lily, the older Hancock daughter, who mesmerises Calder with more than just her peach-colored aura.

Contrary to my earlier apprehension I loved reading the story from the male mermaid’s point of view. It made me quickly grow fond of Lily and Sophy, it kindled my fear for Calder's capricious sisters, it offered the right pacing for the mystery around Hancock Senior and Calder’s mother to be unraveled and it drew me to Calder’s side, strange and unfamiliar as it was. I extremely enjoyed Calder’s observations when he ptetended to be a normal human boy, who already knows how to behave at a family dinner:
“Lily scooped some spinach salad onto my plate and passed me the salt shaker. I looked at her gratefully and shook it liberally over everything.“

Also I keenly felt his distress and his inner conflict. If you do not look at him too closely, Calder could be described as an ectotherm Edward. Beautiful, torn, self-tormenting and slightly in love with the wrong girl. I liked Lily’s curiosity and fearlessness, which did not make her behave sillily. She represented a strong, spunky, happy and loving counterpart to the paranomal heroe who is constantly fighting depression and self-loathing. And am sure she will also keep the sequel from drifting into unbearably dark waters.

Apropos sequel. I would love to get my hands on it now. And I wouldn’t mind owning a physical copy of Lies Beneath. The blood-soaked streak of water following the live-like mermaid looks so fitting.

Thank you, Netgalley and Delacorte Press for making a mermaid lover happy. See my contented, apricot-colored aura? That is definitely thanks to you ... and certainly the wonderful author, Anne Greenwood Brown.

Profile Image for ♥Rachel♥.
1,855 reviews846 followers
June 6, 2012

3.5 Stars

I was pleasantly surprised by this story because I'm not usually attracted to tales involving mermaids. Yet, I was drawn in and mesmerized by this dark and sinister world.

Calder White and his sisters are merpeople, creatures of the sea. These are not the harmless fantastical creatures we see in a Disney cartoon, and they are far from reproach. You begin this story knowing that they are all killers. They pull unsuspecting humans down to the bottom of the ocean while they feed off their emotions. Calder has been trying to practice self-control by staying away from his sisters and not taking any lives. He's been told that eventually he'll go crazy being starved emotionally. Yet, Calder still refrains. However, the winter has ended and the call to return is not something he can resist. He must migrate back to his sisters. There is a new reason to return though, revenge for his mother's death. They've found Jason Hancock, the man who needs to pay for their mother's death.

Little do the Hancock's know, by moving back to the old family home they've put themselves in great danger. Long ago, Calder's mother spared the life of Tom Hancock because he promised to give her his infant son's life instead. Instead of fulfilling that promise, he packed his family up and left the area. Now that Jason, Tom's son, has returned, the Whites are fully prepared to collect the debt and have no qualms using his family to get to him. This is where Tom's daughters, Lily and Sophie come in. They plan on using them to lure Jason so they can kill him. They want to take their time and make him suffer, just as they've had to suffer from their mother's absence all these years. Just one problem though, Calder ends up growing a conscience and developing feelings for Lily. When he can't immediately win Lily over with his supernatural charms, he's forced to get to know her, and then can't help his growing attraction. In addition, seeing the Hancock family happy and very dependent on each other, makes Calder re-think their plans.

Like I said in the outset, we are told straight from the beginning that Calder and his sisters are murderers. I was, to say the least, a little apprehensive about this story knowing that the main character was a murderer. I didn't know how I would end up liking him, much less rooting for him. I was very surprised that I did, even though I fought it all the way. I think this is because Calder tries to fight his cravings, even though he was raised thinking this was just how it had to be. He never thought it was possible to survive without killing. This story was told from Calder's POV which was a treat because I love it when we get a male POV. However, I felt a little distant from Lily because we don't know what's going on in her head. Her character did grow on me though. I liked that she didn't immediately fall at Calder's feet. You can tell something makes Lily very cautious of Calder but he starts to wear her down. It's a slow and believable build in attraction. I can't talk about this story without mentioning how creepy the sisters were, although Maris was by far the worst. They have no conscience and are as evil as they come. Their relationship with Calder is disturbing but I won't elaborate on that.

This story wraps up nicely but leaves room for the sequel coming next year. I definitely will be picking it up.

Thank you to Netgalley and Delacorte Books for Young Readers for allowing me to read this.

You can find this review and more at The Readers Den

Profile Image for Erica (storybookend).
359 reviews284 followers
February 21, 2012
(more a 3.5)

Lies Beneath was, overall, a nice read. It wasn’t as intense or fantastic as I was hoping, but in the, I found that I did like it.

Calder is a merman who, with his three sisters, set up a plan to exact revenge upon the man who was the cause of the death of their mother. Their plan is to have Calder cozy up to the family they’re hoping to destroy. But when Calder gets to know the older daughter, Lily, he begins to feel something, and finds that he can’t imagine himself causing her pain by killing her father.

Reading the novel through the male’s point of view was a nice change, and I enjoyed it. I didn’t quite connect with Calder (at least not until the end), and so couldn’t completely emerge into the story. But that doesn’t mean that it wasn’t a good read, because it was. I think a lot of people will love this book. I just missed the wave a tad too late I think.

I did like Brown’s world and description of mermaids, and that she didn’t shy away from darker themes. These mermaids are murderous, especially the sisters. Their hearts are set upon revenge and they will stop at nothing to get it. One thing that I did not like, though, was the little twist with Calder’s sister, Tallulah. But I also know that it won’t bother other people as much as it did me.

I did like Lily. She was a strong, unique girl. I liked her firm opinions, and dressing however she very well pleased because she doesn’t care what other people think of her. The romance though, wasn’t quite believable. It felt a little too fast for me. But at the ending, I ended up liking it, and finally seeing the love the two had for each other.

Also, the twist at the end was fantastic! The end is what firmly caught my interest and made me like and appreciate the book more. I can honestly say that I’m excited for the sequel. I think Brown wrote a good, original novel that will quickly become a favorite to many readers.

Thank you to Random House Children's Books and Netgalley for providing me with an arc.
Profile Image for Read with Sandee ・❥・.
645 reviews1,298 followers
August 9, 2014

I have tons of book boyfriends.
I have JEM from ID.
I have Jace from MI.
Both are nephilims.
I have Noah Shaw from Unbecoming of Mara Dyer.
He's human. At least in the mean time I think he is.
I have Prince Ash from Iron Fey series.
He's my fairy bf.
I have Jacob from Twilight Series.
He's a werewolf.
I have Peeta from HG.
I have another human BF.
I also have Lucas from Starcrossed.
He's descendant of Paris of Troy.

When I read Lies Beneath, I knew I found a new book bf. :D
A mermaid BF this time.

Its a super cool book!
It was fast paced and interesting.
Changed the way I look at mermaids.
This book would be released on my birthday!
I was meant to read this book.

4.5! :D My almost 5 for the YEAR!

*full review to come near release date!*

Profile Image for Michele at A Belle's Tales.
528 reviews3 followers
March 3, 2012
“Mother, may I go out to swim?
Yes, my darling daughter.
Fold your clothes up neat and trim,
But don’t go near the water.” - Anonymous

Lately, I’ve found myself holding back from reading the synopsis of a book. I don’t want any spoilers, so all I knew about Lies Beneath was that it involved merpeople, which I gathered from that gorgeous cover. I admit that my experience with mermaids didn’t reach beyond Ariel and Prince Eric, so I thought Lies Beneath would be a light, funny, albeit, slightly more mature, version of the above mentioned movie. That sound you hear is my silly misconceptions coming to a screeching halt. Mermaids are hawt... and... naughty! I was spellbound from the first page! These are not your Disney mermaids, and the ancient fairytales and legends had it ALL wrong:

“Forget everything you think you know about merpeople. Forget that freaking Ariel, think Silence of the Lambs, think Friday the Thirteenth. Haven’t you heard anything I said to you today?
They. Will. Kill. You.”

Is that a convincing quote, or what? How about the very first line of the story?:

“I haven’t killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that.”

I adore a male POV, and the author handled this one flawlessly. I wish there were more books from the male’s perspective, but I believe Calder as the male lead is one of my favorites. I love that I just couldn’t quite decide if he was a good guy or a not-so-good guy. I found myself cheering for him... even at times when, perhaps, I shouldn’t have. The character development throughout the story was incredible. Sure, he’s gorgeous, and it’s not like he can help being arrogant (it’s practically part of his DNA), but he also has depth and a purpose. Two purposes to be exact. One is revenge, and the other... freedom. Unfortunately for Calder, they come in that order.

Calder never could have imagined himself falling for a human. Especially not a human who was the descendant of the man responsible for his mother’s death. An old grudge that is finally going to be settled. All he has to do is get close to Lily, lure her in so he and his sisters can use her as bait, and finally get vengeance on her father and closure for their mother’s death. Easy. Or, at least, it would have been until Calder did the unthinkable: He fell for her.

Lily is a great heroine. She’s smart, non-whiny, and completely unaware of her looks. She doesn’t fawn over every guy she meets, and in no way, is she the type to have ‘insta-love’ with any boy, despite his mysterious good looks. She has just the right amount of toughness, sarcasm, and wit - enough to entertain the reader and, most importantly... Calder. Definitely an admirable female lead.

Calder’s sisters were so much fun to read about! While they were beyond scary to me, I found myself being mesmerized by them much in the same way their unwilling victims probably were.

Anne Greenwood Brown’s markedly descriptive imagery of Lake Superior, and especially the underwater details, are breathtaking! Her beautiful writing and vivid descriptions of Lake Superior's surrounding areas make me want to visit the town of Bayfield. Although, if I ever do, you can rest assured I won’t put so much as a pinkie toe in the water. I was so consumed by this story, that in a particular scene describing an underwater swim, I realized I was actually holding my breath!

I loved this book and all of its characters! I’m extremely excited for Deep Betrayal (book 2), out 2013, so I will be able to immerse myself (no pun intended) in more of this story. I highly recommend this book and this fabulous author!

An ARC of this book was provided by Netgalley for review.

Review originally posted at: A Belle's Tales
Profile Image for Reynje.
272 reviews962 followers
February 24, 2012
There comes a day in a reviewer’s life when s/he must write a review to the tune of an ELO song. My friends, that day has come.

(Or more accurately, for some reason, this song kept popping into my head every time I read this book. I can’t explain it).

Thus, I give you: “Evil Woman Merman” as a placeholder until closer to the book’s release and a "proper" review. Here, you can sing along with my..er.. slightly altered lyrics cough.

"You made a pawn of me, but this plotting revenge has got to end.

Hey Calder, you got the blues, cos' you ain't got no need to own shoes.
There's an open ocean that leads nowhere, but it’s time to put miles
between here and there.
There's a hole in your head where your sisters’ voices come in,
They took your past and played to win,
Ha Ha merman it's a crying shame,
But now you gotta kill the person you blame

E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, Evil Merman

Rolled in to your old lake,
Turned on the charm, went creepin’ around,
But a fool and his ego soon go separate ways,
And you found a poet girl lyin' in a daze,
Ha Ha Merman what you gonna do,
You want to destroy the plans your sisters gave you,
It's so strange that you're feeling pain,
But your siren sisters want you back on board their crazy train.

E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, Evil Merman

E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, Evil Merman

Evil merman you’ve done her wrong,
And now you're tryin' to wail a different song,
Ha Ha funny how you say you’re in love, she read you a poem and you can’t give her up,
She came runnin' every time you spied,
Thought she saw love smilin' in your eyes,
Ha Ha very nice to know, but now it’s time for you to swim off and go..

E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, E-evil Merman, Evil Merman"

Profile Image for Jessie  (Ageless Pages Reviews).
1,695 reviews875 followers
February 24, 2012
Read This Review & More Like It On My Blog!

Finally! A mermaid tail (sorry, couldn't resist a bit of fin, I mean fun) tale that I can finally, actually say I enjoyed reading; one that I didn't hate the main characters (but kinda sorta totally loved them), or their romance, or even the mythology behind the sea creatures. Lies Beneath is a success in a genre that has so fat yet to offer many noteworthy titles; this is thanks in part to presence of, as the great Wendy Darling of GoodReads so aptly put it: eeeeevil mermaids. Not the Disneyfied version most common on film and in YA novels (Between the Sea and Sky, I am looking at you) but the twisted, covetous, murderous sirens of Greek mythology. These sirens mermaids have bite; the three females (dominat matriarch Maris, affectionate Tallulah, flawless Pavati) especially typify the kind of mermaid I apparently like to read: vengeful, deliberate and deadly. Lies Beneath is also is one of the few all-male POV young-adult novels I've read - unexpected, and very welcome when I realized it.

Calder (have you even seen a caldera? Hmmm....) White is both a creeper and, oxymoronically but believably, a good guy. What's nice about Calder, and reading from his view, is that he's a very self-aware creeper. He doesn't misrepresent his actions (breaking and entering, stalking, etc.) as romance or love, but readily admits his actions are more in line with a "serial killer" than a boyfriend. I liked Calder from the start: his is a strong and distinguished voice from the outset, with just a touch of that self-deprecating humor that I always enjoy. He's obviously and clearly different from his sisters: winter migrations, self-denial disguised as self-control, desire for isolation. The title itself is also doubly clever when viewed in reference to the male lead character: not only does a monster lie beneath the waters of the placid looking lake, but there are lies beneath his motivations that even he is unaware of. Figuring out Calder's personal history is a recurring subplot throughout, that though it doesn't have the high dramatics of the 'kill Jason Hancock' main plot, has more than enough punch at the end.

Lily was sadly a weaker effort than her love interest for much of the novel. She found her footing before the end, but on the whole my love for this book is based on Calder, not Lily. I found her wardrobe choices a bit try-hard and the love for Victorian mermaid-espousing poets was a little bit of a reach but I was won over. I was won over and I know the exact moment - it wasn't when Lily slapped Calder's hand for trying to 'hook her hair behind her ear' though I did love it, it wasn't when she was smart and suspicious of the boy she catches following her everywhere she goes - it was when she used a bad Russian accent. Everyone has a bad Russian accent, everyone I hang out with, at least. That was when she stopped being a character and became real. It was also refreshing to read a family with a strong and loving dynamic, one that actually seemed to love each other (the only other recent read I can recall that did the same was in The Alchemy of Forever), though that served its purpose as well. Lily's family represents a lot of what Calder lost in his 54(if I've mathed that right) 18 years of life: family, love, security, normalcy.

Back to the sisters three most vengeful: Maris, intimidating if somewhat mystifying by the end, Pavati, whose name I read as 'Parvati' nine times before I realized my mistake, and the kind-only-by-comparison Tallulah. (Thematically-relevant/appropriate names? Nice touch, Greenwood Brown.) Their individual characterization is severely lacking, but as a force they are impressive. Even the number of them (school of them? shoal of them? swarm?), three, is reinforced by the Greek legends they pay clear homage to; the most accepted number in tales is between two and five. The girls are born mermaids, as Calder is not. They prey on humans, though not for flesh or for ships as the ancient version did, but for the victim's emotions. They are, as Calder claims to ignorant ears, monsters, not the typical Disney princesses I've come to read and cringe about. Here, in their motivation and craving for human feeling as well as the creation of 'reinvigorated' (made, not born) mermaids, is where Brown diverges from traditional reasoning and branches out into her own version of motives for the watermonsters.To her creative credit, it is both a logical and elegantly simple answer. But first, in order to show why I thought this so great, allow me to wander a moment. This next paragraph may wax slightly spoilery, so avoid if you don't want minor details before reading.

I read a lot of vampire novels; they're heavily published and a lot of my friends, both online and off, read them as well. They seem to be dropping off in favor of dystopias/post-apocalyptic (or have just adapted, like Darwin predicted) but for a few years there, they were ubiquitous. So either in solidarity (Morganville series) or out of masochistic curiosity (Twilight series), I've more than read my fair share of the genre full of bloodsuckers. Some of those books went out their way to fashion a coherent/unique reason for why the vampires needed blood; others...did not. I enjoyed one type of these books more than the other. For example, one novel postulated that vampires need the oxygen present in living humans blood to keep their bodies/cells alive 'after death'. (I don't remember what book this was, but even if it was Twilight, love the concept, hate the execution. But I doubt it was). The point is: it was original, it was clever, and it has stuck with me long after the book itself was lost. (Someone remind me? Or someone with more powerful Google Fu than I can figure it out?) Anne Greenwood Brown has done something similar with her mermaids: they cannot manufacture their own positive emotions, so they covet and murder and plot to absorb ours/our aura in water. Emotions like joy, hope, excitement, love are more than just sustenance; they're what keep the mermaid/man from falling into an endless depression, and eventually, insanity and death. Clever, right? Without delving into actual consumption of humans. Random side-note: These Lake Superior merpeople are also apparently somewhat part eel - all four in Calder's 'family' have some electrical abilities both in and out of water that are referred to as 'eel-like' or similar. Major personal kudos for the author and her clever adaptions to the mythic creatures - these are definitely her own version.

Lies Beneath is good, just too short. This is convoluted. This is original and fun and easy to read. It's a fast-paced novel where events happen quickly so this far from a boring read, ever. The conflicts in Calder's life - family versus freedom, nature versus nurture, choice versus requirement, revenge or forgiveness - are all executed so well. His emotional pull between personal happiness and a desire to set something right is never melodramatic. There is a sequel, Deep Betrayal, set for a 2013 release and from Lily's view. All I know is my that next two mermaid reads, Of Poseidon and Monstrous Beauty, have a lot to live up to. Also, lastly, superficially: how AWESOME and creepy is that cover with the touch of bloodred? So appropriate and foreboding. Dun dun duuuun. Read this one, guys.
Profile Image for ᒪᗴᗩᕼ .
1,495 reviews147 followers
June 7, 2019
3.2 Out Of 5 "Lies Beneath" STARS

๏  Highlights ๏

Killer Mermaids
Lake Superior Setting

With Audio Performed by MacLeod Andrews

๏  My Thoughts ๏ 

Lies Beneath is not a bad story, more like a meh story.  The idea behind it is an interesting one, mermaids who kill to survive and live in the Great Lakes...seriously killer Mermaids are kinda cool.  Unfortunately, the idea of it is cooler than the actual story.  Some Authors have the ability to pull a reader into the story and make them really feel it, but I didn't feel that with this Author.  Initially, I was drawn to this story because the setting is Lake Superior, being from Michigan, I thought it was super cool to have a setting close to home, even though it was a part of Lakes Superior by Minnesota, I still kinda dug it.  The narration was decently done, Macleod Andrews doesn't usually disappoint.  I did not know until a couple of days after I finished this that it has two more books...I thought it was a stand-alone.  The ending did kind of leave it with things unsaid, but I was fine with that.  So, I honestly don't think I will continue the series.


๏ Breakdown of Ratings ๏ 

Plot⇝ 3.2/5
Narration Performance⇝ 4.5/5
Characters⇝ 3.5/5
The Feels⇝ 2.3/5
Pacing⇝ 3/5
Addictiveness⇝ 3.3/5
Theme or Tone⇝ 4/5
Flow (Writing Style)⇝ 3/5
Backdrop (World Building)⇝ 3.5/5
Originality⇝ 4/5
Ending⇝ 3.7/5 Cliffhanger⇝ Meh...not really.
๏ ๏ ๏
Book Cover⇝ A bit deceiving, since the pov is from a MerMan
Setting⇝  Lake Superior, North Shore in Minnesota 
Source⇝ Audiobook (Library)
๏ ๏ ๏
Profile Image for Eunice.
255 reviews527 followers
January 23, 2012
4 of 5 stars

Okay. This was the first time I read a merman/mermaid novel. When I started this I didn't have any idea on what to expect here. I even thought it would be a struggle read but no, it was actually an easy and fast-paced read. Lies Beneath was really an interesting and entertaining read. Not to mention that this is narrated in a male pov which I'm a sucker for! It wasn't perfect but the story and the characters were very appealing, there's just something in it that would make you want to know what's gonna happen next and continue reading it. And surprisingly I did enjoy this book. ^^

The characters were fairly interesting especially Calder. I liked that he tried to make his own decisions and actions and not let himself be totally influenced by his sisters. I love that most of his humanity had remained even after being turned into a merman and grew up with them. Lily was a good character, she's smart and open-minded. Although her character didn't strike me that much and I wasn't that connected with her. I found myself on some parts wishing that I could also read her pov to understand her character better. So I was glad when I learned that the second book will be in her pov. Calder's sisters, Tallulah, Pavati, and Marisa were very good villains and really evil mermaids - something I really liked about this book.

Overall, Lies Beneath was a fascinating and interesting read. The authors's evil mermaid/merman concept had me definitely liking this story more. I'm definitely looking forward for more! :))
Profile Image for Nina.
118 reviews11 followers
May 14, 2011
I had the lucky honor of reading a final draft of Lies Beneath. It is AMAZING!!!! I don't want to get into details and give things away. Let's just say I'll be one of those people waiting in line for book #2!
Profile Image for AH.
2,005 reviews370 followers
June 7, 2012
3.5 stars

Killer mermaids/mermen!!!

Now this was a very different take on mermaids. Step aside Ariel and let author Anne Greenwood Brown tell us all about her mermaids. Lies Beneath's mermaids are predators that feed upon humans’ positive emotions, leaving shriveled husks of their prey behind. These mermaids have special abilities: they are able to communicate telepathically with other animals, they have speed, they have beauty, they are able to compel and persuade, and they are able to transform into human form and walk among us.

Set in Lake Superior, near the Apostle Islands off Wisconsin, Lies Beneath borrows from the Manitou legends and lore of the Native Indians of that region. The rugged beauty of the area and its remoteness create a wonderful backdrop for this tale. (No pun intended).

The story is narrated by Calder, a merman who is compelled to leave the warmth of the Caribbean and migrate to join his sisters Maris, Pavati, and Tallulah up north in Lake Superior. They have summoned Calder back to Lake Superior to avenge their mother’s death. Calder’s migration used all modes of transport – by water, by plane, and stolen car. Yes, these mermaids have a kind of outlaw feel to them.
Maris is particularly ruthless, carrying a grudge for long periods of time. Pavati uses her beauty to acquire necessities for her family as well as prey. Pavati loves to “play” with her food. Tallulah is the more happy-go-lucky sister who cares deeply for Calder. Tallulah wants to be free of Maris’ control.

Calder’s character both intrigued and repulsed me. It’s not often that I read books about mermaids and his perspective was new for me. Calder was different from his sisters – he preferred the warmth of the Caribbean to Lake Superior (completely understandable). He also viewed his sisters’ feeding habits with disdain; he had not fed from a human in months. I was a little creeped out by Calder’s stalker tendencies, more so because he was behaving as a predator which was his nature. Calder did have some cool abilities. He had a strong electric charge which made him handy as a bug zapper.

There’s lots to like about Lily. Lily is a bit of a free spirit, a poet at heart. The oldest daughter of Jason Hancock, Lily was responsible for her younger sister Sophie. Lily does not fall head over heels for Calder at first – in fact she is quite wary of him, and rightfully so. Lily is smart and resourceful and handles herself well in difficult situations.

I liked how the author includes poetry about mermaids into the narrative. Lily even sports her favorite line of poetry as a tattoo.

Lies Beneath is not without a few little problems. Lake Superior would be way too cold for swimming, especially in April unless one is a fish. Aside from that, and perhaps a few stalkerish moments, I found Lies Beneath to be an enjoyable read and an exciting new take on mermaids.

Thank you to NetGalley and Random House Children’s Books for a review copy of this book.

Review posted on Badass Book Reviews.
Profile Image for Rose.
1,872 reviews1,055 followers
June 27, 2012
Initial reaction: I think my summation for "Lies Beneath" is that there's a lot of surface tension - in the character development, in the ominous situations, among other things, but as I waited for the story to pull me under and immerse me - that point never came.

I didn't hate the story at all - there were parts of it that I liked, but in the end - it was a mediocre read for me at best. I hope I can explain my thoughts more in the full review.

Full review:

I've had a devil of a time trying to expound on my thoughts with respect to Anne Greenwood Brown's "Lies Beneath". I wanted to write a review far before this point, but the words always seemed to slip my mind in terms of why it didn't work for me, or why I think it wouldn't work beyond a certain audience with some considerations in mind. The book itself has an awesome premise, one that might draw many paranormal romance fans as well as those who might be looking for a thrilling story. However, given the structuring of the story and a LOT of inconsistencies/inaccuracies in this book about the area it takes place within, it's difficult to overlook them and still think well of the overarching story.

I think my summation for "Lies Beneath" is that there's a lot of surface tension - in the character development, in the ominous situations, among other things, but as I waited for the story to pull me under and immerse me - that point never came. I think some of the strong selling points of Anne Greenwood Brown's debut novel is that it fits snug with the rising trend of YA paranormal romance, offering an interesting take on mermaid mythos. It tells a story of vengeance among a group of mermaids who feed on human emotions, thereby killing them, in order to sustain themselves.

The problem is that it doesn't do enough to set itself apart from being a predictable, formulaic foray, despite what I thought was a brilliant premise.

Calder White and his sisters stalk the waters of Lake Superior to find Jason Hancock, the descendant of the man responsible for their mother's death. Calder sets forth a plan to integrate himself into the Hancock family and go in for the kill, but ends up falling in love with Jason's daughter, Lily. Calder has to make the decision between carrying out his plans for betrayal (and steeling against his sisters' collective ire) against listening to the senses that tell him how wrong he is.

I didn't hate "Lies Beneath" as an overall story, but there were several things that bothered me enough to affect my enjoyment of the book severely, enough to the point where I couldn't overlook its mediocrity. One of them was Calder as a collective character. His voice had a static tone that was hard to connect to in spurts. Even with being unlikable (intentionally at first), there wasn't much substance to him. I expected him to have a lot more range of emotions for going after the family responsible for his mother's death. It was told (more touched upon) rather than shown, and it was hard to find a connection as to his investment of carrying out this particular task. There was far more conviction shown in the pain of Calder's transformation from merman to human than in the plan for revenge, which bothered me.

Calder was also a stalkerish, possessive creep for much of the time we observe him. There wasn't really much "love" in his thought process with Lily, even from the very beginning when he's hiding in her bedroom closet or in the bushes - it was more of a one-sided "I have to have her" vibe and I didn't like it at all. He was put off that she didn't instantly fall in love with him, and he was put off whenever she was with another guy.

At least Lily had enough sense to call him out on it. Lily isn't a pushover character. I really liked her personality wise, not so much for the romance because the romance overall was weak and underdeveloped, but Lily - as a collective character - was cool. She might've been the strongest character in this book when compared to Calder, his sisters, or even her collective family, but even then - the expansion of her character felt underwhelming when compared to the larger story.

At a certain point, Calder truly starts to care for Lily (I wish this had been shown much better than what it was), and by that point, the sisters catch on and it ends up being a lot of trouble for our hero (meh) and heroine.

The pacing really slowed this book down for me on a collective level. For all the intrigue of the premise, it felt sluggish for a story where a lot of manipulation is at play and for the genre it was. Sure, I like slice of life elements and hearing about character passions, but when it slows the momentum of the story, it can be difficult to pick up again. There were times when - and I'm a huge poetry buff - I really didn't want to hear about how Calder tries to talk to Lily about poetry and the tangents that were taken with that. It made me feel like I was back in Julie Cross's "Tempest" and how the main character (who's also male) starts citing Dickens in the middle of a make-out scene. Ugh. It makes for some awkward transitions, and doesn't always reflect well on the character.

There were other elements that took me out of the tale as well - for example, the setting. I've never been to Lake Superior, but I know enough about it to know that the setting in this book misrepresents several elements about the environment and the people who may swim there. Real places do need to be vetted out in a work, even in fiction, because that can have an impact on how the story comes across.

In the end, I'm a little torn as to whether I'll follow the series from here, but I think "Lies Beneath" could've amounted to more than what it was for its respective elements. I'm sure there are people who will like it, but I think there are better mermaid stories out there - with better characters, intrigue, and unique qualities.

Overall score: 2/5

Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher Random House/Delcorte Books for Young Readers.
Profile Image for Cambria.
Author 110 books5,418 followers
February 18, 2012
Title: Lies Beneath
Author: Anne Greenwood Brown
Genre: Paranormal YA
Format: I was provided an ARC through Netgalley
Publisher: Delacorte for young readers expected publication June 2012

Synopsis (via Goodreads)
Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistable good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.

I hadn’t killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that.
Any book that begins with that sentence has got my attention immediately. There was no, “ugh, I’m so evil because I kill people” or “ugh I really hate myself” it was just this is who I am and what I am. I love that.
Mermaids intrigue me because they are part of another world, yet also part of my world too. So, I was super excited to get this book for review.
Lies Beneath isn’t like the little mermaid but this is the way I think that a real mermaid would be. This is how I imagine them. Even better, the POV was from a male mermaid. Calder is a character that really draws you in. His thought process is unique and it’s something that I felt like I was (very appropriately) drowning in. It was so, so easy to just sink into his words and forget the world around me.
This book is a lot darker than I expected but it was a good thing. The mermaids in this book were a lot more like predators than people most of the time. I think this portrayal makes things seem all the more real. Surprisingly it didn’t make me dislike them or even fear them. That would be like hating a dog for acting like a dog. It certainly made me want to keep reading to learn more about them, to understand them better. I liked how they went through the change, I liked how they affected people and I liked how they basically were like nomads. It all made perfect sense.
Calder was a little different than the others and I like how he went through a change in the book – a change that he chose. He learned that he could be who he wanted to be not who he thought he was supposed to be.
Lily was also a character that I thought was unique. She dressed kind of strange and it became endearing. She read poetry and cares for her family and she doesn’t apologize for any of it. I like that that she didn’t really like Calder at first, she wasn’t mesmerized by him or drawn to him – he was just there and he made her uncomfortable. It was a refreshing dynamic between the two lead characters.
The plot of this story is really well done. It kept me reading, kept the pages turning until the end. I liked all the characters in this book - I actually feel like I got to know every single one of them. They weren’t just in the background but active participants in the story. A whole world was created that worked together and weaved through the story.
The ending wasn’t what I was expecting. I’m not really sure I like how things were left. I was a little disappointed because I am still unsure where things will go from there. But, I am certainly looking forward to the next book and to see what else is in store for Calder and Lily.
I would recommend this book to any Young Adult reader and anyone who wants a unique refreshing twist on a paranormal book. This is definitely a series to read and to watch. I think great things are going to come from Anne Greenwood Brown.
Before I officially end my review I want to share a quote from my favorite scene in the book. I still can see it clearly in my head and I thought the moment between Calder and Lily was beautiful…
Lily has just run from the ocean and was dripping wet with cold water….

Her skin glistened and goose bumps rose all over her body. I reached behind me and pulled my sweatshirt over the top of my head. Lily put her arms in the air, and I pulled the shirt back down over her, inside out.
Maris’s voice growled in my ear. Remember why you’re here, Calder.
I remember, I thought, dragging my finger around Lily’s ear to secure a lock of hair.
Paints a nice picture, huh? It’s a nice way to close this review.
So there you have it. My opinioin.

Profile Image for Katie.
182 reviews47 followers
January 31, 2012
First, special thanks to the folks at Delacorte Books for sending me an e-Galley (via NetGalley) of Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown to review.

Second, I absolutely loved this book! It took less than 48 hours to read and that's only because I had to sleep. The opening line had me hooked right away, which is the first thing I look for in a 5-star book:

“I hadn’t killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that.”

We are immediately thrust into Calder White's world, where we learn that he is a merman who requires not only water to truly thrive, but also human emotion. That is, to feed off of human emotion; preferably positive emotion. However, unlike his three sisters - Maris, Pavina, and Tallulah - and other merpeople, Calder has chosen to abstain from feeding as a test of his will-power. His sisters have no such qualms and just do not get his decision. I loved the thought that Anne put into this aspect of the book. These murderous mermaids are definitely not from Disney's Little Mermaid!

From the warm waters of the Bahamas, the tie that binds Calder with his sisters urges him home, to the cold waters of Lake Superior in Minnesota.There, just like every Spring before, they gather to plot revenge against Jason Hancock, the son of the man who they believe caused the death of their mother. This time, their timing for revenge is perfect. Jason, drawn by some unknown force to Lake Superior, has moved his sick wife and two daughters to the old family home on the lake. Calder and his sisters agree - he will befriend one of the sisters to get closer to their real target: Jason Hancock. Descriptions of both the land and the lake are vivid and beautiful, giving a perfect sense of place. I could practically see the bottom of the lake and smell the vegetation in the surrounding forest.

Calder ultimately chooses Lily Hancock, the eldest of the two girls. Lily is eccentric at best, with her odd manner of dress, her obsession with Victorian poets, and a flair for the dramatic. She is also mysterious, beautiful, kind-hearted, observant, and surprisingly resistant to his charms: a combination Calder finds he just can't resist. Soon, he is torn between a budding relationship with Lily, and a tenuous relationship with his twisted, vengeful sisters, to whom be is bound to forever.

The relationship that develops between Calder and Lily isn't contrived or forced, or the type of "Insta-Love!" you find in many YA books today. It develops slowly and (relatively) naturally, and I couldn't help but cheer them on as their relationship ebbed and flowed. I wish I could have had a glimpse of things from Lily's point-of-view, as I saw her as an interesting character with loads to say, but maybe we'll have that opportunity in Book #2. I was particularly pleased with the character development I saw in Calder throughout the story. He knows that he comes from a murderous lineage, but fights it anyway. His sisters were well-developed, too, and I alternated between hating them and loving them.

Lies Beneath is full of delicious, page-turning tension and twists that will keep you guessing the true motive and story of every character right up until the end. Will Calder ever be free of his sisters? What drew Jason Hanock to bring his family to Lake Superior? Can a murderous mermaid - or merman - really love someone else? Whose life will be sacrificed in this story of revenge -and forgiveness?

You'll have to read Lies Beneath to find out :) Debuting just in time for those hot summer days on the beach -or lake- this book is sure to be the talk of the season! Kudos to Anne Greenwood Brown for such a fabulous story. I can't wait until Book #2!

For more reviews, please see my book blog, BlookGirl.com! :)
Profile Image for Giselle.
1,057 reviews907 followers
April 5, 2016
A finished unsolicited copy was provided by the publisher for review.

I've seen this book before it hit shelves and I have to say it caught my eye. Mermaids are this hot new trend now. No more vampires, but mermaids. Killer mermaids to be exact. And no better mermaid who wants to avenge his father's death than Calder. Yup, it's a merman to be exact. In this novel, his sisters are the evil conniving ones bringing men into the water and drowning them taking away all their emotions so they can feed themselves. In a way, humans are like food. The plan is to lure their father's killer's son into the water and murder him. Only Calder realizes he's falling in love with his daughter, Lily.

Lily on the other hand, is your average teenage girl. Through Calder's eyes, you can figure out the moment he falls in love with her. Although in my own opinion, she had no personality, except for her love of Victorian written poems. Anne Greenwood Brown is a master at character development, but with plot she lacked the pacing and tone that kept me wanting to keep reading the book! I had to put it down just so I can read another book because I was so very bored. I don't think I could have managed to keep reading about how Lily was wonderful and beautiful and all things angelic anymore. I do liked Calder. He seems honorable and straddling the line of good vs evil, he always picked the good side. In the end, I was completely rooting for him and I'm glad I kept reading because the ending made me want to pick up the next book. Maybe this time there will be some action?

Overall Lies Beneath is not your average mermaid story. It's about revenge, mystery and of course romance. I can't help but wonder if the next book is in the viewpoint of one of the sisters. They were so much more interesting considering their evil plans. Muahahah
Profile Image for Jenna D..
1,045 reviews145 followers
January 16, 2012
LIES BENEATH is the debut novel by author Anne Greenwood Brown, a novel that I only just discovered last week thanks to NetGalley and the amazing folks at Delacorte Press. I finished reading the book only an hour or so ago, and I am still reeling from the outcome of this amazing (yes, I said it, absolutely AMAZING) story. The book was both emotionally engaging and suspenseful from start to finish. I will do my best to be as vague as possible in my review, for fear that I spoil a book that still has roughly 5 months to go until its official release date. Rest assured, no spoilers are provided below. But I will say this much: after devouring the advanced e-book of Lies Beneath, I seriously can’t wait to get my hands on the finished hardcover copy!

Read my full review here.
Profile Image for Dark Faerie Tales.
2,274 reviews545 followers
April 11, 2013
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales.

Quick & Dirty: A mermaid falls in love with the daughter of a revenge target. Filled with a sweet romance, loving family, a not-so-caring family and a boy wishing for freedom.

Opening Sentence: I hadn’t killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that.

The Review:

Told from Calder’s point of view, this story explores the monsters lurking underneath the waves of Lake Superior. Calder tries to escape from his sisters – key word: tries. While his three sisters stick together around Lake Superior, Calder opts to vacation in the Bahamas during the winter, but every spring, Calder is pulled back to the lake and forced to spend an entire summer with his sisters. But this time it’s different. The sisters call him back earlier because they think they’ve finally found their mother’s killer’s son – Jason Hancock. Calder reluctantly returns from the sun to the cold waters of the lake. Determined to exact revenge on the man who killed their mother, Calder and his sisters plot to seduce one of Jason’s daughters – only, when the time comes, it’s Calder’s choice of which daughter is taken from him. Now the only way to get Jason into the water is though his oldest daughter – Lily. Try as he might, good looks and savvy flirting skills aren’t going to win over Lily – instead he might just end up falling.

I read this book while on the beach…while it was cold…and found myself looking for something that might just resemble a mermaid (although I did see several cute guys). Even though I didn’t find a lick of the paranormal, I did discover this amazing world of mermaids, revenge and family. I’m always welcome to guy narrators, but usually they are either completely boring or way too graphic. Calder’s voice was a perfect balance of the scramble of his thoughts and narration. As for the character himself, he was well developed and we could see his motives change as he begins to question his way of life (sucking all emotion from humans – that’s the way mermaids eat).

The girls in this book were amazing, even from the point of view of a guy. I found it ironic that Lily was the mysterious girl who catches the eye of the guy, and I was laughing when Calder tried to figure her out. After reading so many girl-narrated books, I found Lily quite easy to decipher, but with Calder, he was completely clueless on the matter. Just an ironic twist to the YA world. The sisters in their own right were each well developed, even for minor characters. Each one had their own motives for doing whatever they were doing, but they were all connected by the familial bond and the drive to kill. Complete sirens in themselves, but this book would not be nearly has interesting without them.

Overall, this was a great book. The twists in this book I did not see coming. There were things I was confused on, like how the sisters could blame Hancock for the mother being caught in a net, but hopefully it’ll dive into more detail in the next book. MAJORish cliffhanger at the end, but the next book Deep Betrayals comes out soon!

Notable Scene:

That was what had drawn Pavati to the old man the other day, and all three of my sisters to the college kids. That was what had drawn my mother to Lily’s own grandfather. I almost wanted to tell her the story. How he’d been so happy he was a magnet to her. How she capsized the boat and brought him down, but he fought back. How he regained the surface and pleaded with her. How she offered him the life of a merman, but he rejected her, so she demanded an exchange, another life for his. How he offered his son–only one at the time. How she swam him back to shore and waited by the dock.

How a second later the family was running for the car and racing out of town. How she followed the road along the shore. And then finally how she was strangled in a fisherman’s net.

What would Lily have thought if I’d laid it all out there like that? Would she have run away screaming, knowing that we were here to collect on that promise?

Lily wasn’t so obtuse that she couldn’t see something was bothering me. She leaned out of the kayak and draped her arm around my shoulder, laying her cheek against mine, comforting me without really knowing how wrong this was. I jerked away, not realizing I’d come close enough for her to touch me. A spark jumped through the air between her arm and my back.

I could choose not to kill Lily Hancock. That choice was still mine to make. I could protect her from my sisters. But there was one thing beyond my control. In the end, I would still deceive her. Jason Hancock was still marked for death.

FTC Advisory: Random House Children’s Books provided me with a copy of Lies Beneath. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
Profile Image for Tee Loves Books.
940 reviews
July 21, 2012
This is a tough one for me, because I really wanted to love this book and I was excited about it after loving Of Poseidon so much. But for me, it just lacked the charm that it could have had, and the characters just fell short.

Lies Beneath is the story of four mermaid siblings who are out to get revenge for their mother's death. Calder, the 'adopted' brother, would prefer to live his life without the constant pull he feels from the bond with his sister mermaids. He manages to get away for awhile, but the pull always brings him back to his siblings. When he gets the call that they've finally found who they've been searching for, the man that is the debt owed for the death of their mother, he can't resist following his sisters to the lake. The lake where the Hancock family has finally resurfaced, and they can finally carry out their plan to take the life of the first born son, Jason Hancock, as was promised to their mother so many years ago. Calder and his sisters devise a plan to lure Jason to the water; Calder will play hero to one of Jason's daughters, making them in his debt and easier to manipulate. But with Calder off his game and his sisters taking some matters into their own hands, nothing seems to be going according to plan. When Calder starts to have real feelings for Lily and realizes there may be life for him outside the murder and vengeance that his sisters thrive on, the betrayal is too much. Now Calder takes on the role of protector, but with three angry mermaids up against him he may not stand a chance.

My take:
I liked having the story in Calder's POV, I think it made him seem like less of a monster when I got to see what he was thinking along the way. He clearly was conflicted with his feelings on many things; his sisters, his life, how best to go about carrying out their plan, how to break through Lily's shell, and finally whether or not he really wanted revenge when it came down to it. At times it did feel like there was almost too much mind-chatter, with him over-analyzing every move he made, and he really didn't come across as the smooth seductive merman that he claims to be. It was really odd for me, I'm not sure what I didn't like, but Calder just didn't grab me until the absolute end of the book. I suppose it was the lack of notable charisma and his awkwardness with Lily, it took away from the 'sexy dangerous merman' angle for me. And Lily was okay as a heroine, but again there was just that spark missing from her to make me really love her character. I feel bad, because this story had a great plot and probably should have had me hooked, but the lack of dimension in the main characters left me wanting more.

Calder's sisters, now they had the dangerous mermaid factor in spades!! And just when I thought Maris was the ultimate villain in this story, another of the sisters turns out to be even more evil in her core than the others. They definitely fit the role of the beautiful vengeful mermaids, and I was on the edge of my seat in the final chapters thanks to their heartless ways.

The ending was a 50/50 split as far as whether I liked it or not. My stomach was tied in knots as the climax played out, but I wish it had unfolded differently. It kind of left me less than impressed with Calder again, but then we also see a truly broken side of him that made him have so much more depth and emotion. I finally liked him as the story was coming to a close, and the way it ends has left me curious about rest of this series. I'll probably read on because there were enough twists to keep the story interesting, and I'm crossing my fingers this new Calder makes his appearance instead of the one that I grew tired of in the earlier parts of this story. I give this one a 3.5 and am cautiously optimistic for the rest of the series.
Profile Image for Danielle..
258 reviews237 followers
July 17, 2012
This review can be found on The Midnight Tea Party

'Forget everything you think you know about merpeople. Forget that freaking Ariel, think Silence of the Lambs, think Friday the Thirteenth.'

Yes, forget what you think you know about merpeople. Forget about The Little Mermaid and Ingo. This isn't your favourite fairy-tale story. These merpeople are dark; the only way they can survive is by feeding off of human energy. They're jealous of our emotions -- happiness, love, joy, etc., so they take them away from us.

This was such a refreshing mermaid tale! After reading Of Poseidon by Anna Banks, I was semi-afraid to pick up another YA novel based on merpeople. I'm so glad I was not disappointed. The details were vivid and riveting. This novel isn't about being under the sea in Atlantica with king Triton and whatnot; rather, it's about Calder White, a merman who's trying to fulfill his sisters' deed on killing Jason Hancock. He has to become close to the daughter, Lily, to gain Hancock's trust and lure him onto the water, but there's only one problem: he's fallen in love and everything completely changes.

Usually I'm always making a big fuss towards the characters; however, I found myself becoming attached to a few. I was not expecting the story to be so good. The way Brown describes the transformation of mermaids, being in the water and absorbing the energy from humans was beyond my expectations. The writing was beautiful and enchanting; the romance was tragic and sweet. I sat in bed for hours until I reached the last page. Nothing about this book was disappointing -- only that it ended and how I have to wait for the next installment in 2013.

'See the stars?'
She sighed, surrendering. 'Of course.'
'Do you think they can see the sun coming?

Just look at the cover y'all. Look at it. I'm so excited I could squeal. It's also going to be Lily narrating? Pinch me I'm dreaming.
Profile Image for Jessica Gibson.
Author 19 books448 followers
February 23, 2012
The lore of mermaids and mermen is real. Just wait until you meet Calder White in this addictive debut novel that is destined to make a splash!

Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters must prey on humans and absorb their positive energy. Usually they select their victims at random, but this time around the underwater clan chooses its target for a reason: revenge. They want to kill Jason Hancock, the man they blame for their mother's death.

It's going to take the whole White family to lure the aquaphobic Hancock onto the water. Calder's job is to gain Hancock's trust by getting close to his family. Relying on his irresistible good looks and charm, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter Lily. Easy enough, but Calder screws everything up by falling in love—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined, and just as the mermaids threaten to take matters into their own hands, forcing Calder to choose between family and the girl he loves. One thing's for sure, whatever Calder decides, the outcome won't be pretty.

I got an ARC from NetGalley of this book last week. Let me just say I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was such a different story, not your normal YA book. Calder was almost instantly likable, he had the surly attitude I like. It was refreshing to read a book with a male lead character, most books center on the female perspective.
I love Lily, she has such an "I don't care what you think" attitude, she is her own person entirely.

The relationship between Calder and his three sisters is dysfunction at its best. Maris, the matriarch of the family is bossy and horrible, but I didn't feel that her character was one dimensional in that respect. Pavati is what you think of when you think of mermaids, she's truly a siren. Finally, Talullah, she's the shyer one of the group, and she's the sister that Calder has the strongest connection to.

Calder is torn between obligation to his family, and his ever growing feelings for Lily Hancock, the daughter of the man he's vowed to lure to a watery grave. You feel everything right along with him, his indecision and his resolve. Such an amazing book! I couldn't wait to go to bed every night, just so I could stay up late and read.
August 22, 2021
Okay, is it possible that I finished this book on the same date but two years apart? Apparently so.

I don't have much to say, just that I'm so glad I finally read this book. It has a good pace, the writing style is simple and enjoyable and you get by the pages really quickly. It's about deadly mermaids and what better way to read about it then in the summertime. 😁

I loved the characters and the way this book shows mermaids as deadly predators, not some romantic beings like in the movies and fairytales.


I recommend it to anyone who wants to read something different! Looking forward to read book 2!
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