The Mermaid of Black Conch: A Love Story
Aycayia, a beautiful young woman cursed by jealous wives to live as a mermaid, has been swimming the Caribbean Sea for centuries. And she is entrance ...more
I want to stay my woman self
even here when my people long dead
I want to be here on land again
but deep inside I know there is still some mix up
I am still half and half
half woman and half cursed woman
cursed still in this new place
The sea is a strong pull
The Mermaid of the Black Conch comes from the Costa and Women’s Prize shortlisted Monique Roffey and the wonderful small independent publisher Peepal Tree Pres ...more
“Every afternoon, around three o’clock, David dropped Aycayia to Miss Rain’s for lessons. There at the table in the grand room with wooden floors, sat an indigenous woman of the Caribbean; cursed to be a mermaid by her own sisterhood, whose people had all but died out, slaughtered by the Castiilian Admiral and his kind; a woman who, as a mermaid, was pulled out of the sea by Yankee men who wanted to a...more
This book is an imaginative poetic fantasy built on the mythology and history of the Caribbean, that I rather enjoyed, but it is a book that I found difficult to review.
It tells the story of Aycayia, a woman from a pre-European Caribbean culture who has been cursed and forced to live as a near-immortal mermaid. These are the fantasy trappings that underpin the story, but the rest is very much set in the real world, mostly in 1976. Aycayia develops an int ...more
Shortlisted for 2020 Costa book awards.
Was also shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize
Roffey's The Mermaid of Black Conch is a special and deep book with a lot of heart.
A beautifully, subtly written tale of a woman, Aycayia, cursed to be a mermaid, captured in a fishing competition by white USA men then rescued by David Baptiste, a local fisherman who falls in love with her. The events mostly occur in 1976 around St Constance a village on the Caribbean island, Black Conch, in the lead up to t ...more
A Love story like no other…
This is not your typical mermaid or love story and that is what made The Mermaid of Black Conch utterly unique. Set in 1976 we are introduced to a fictional Caribbean Island called Black Conch that is reminiscence of an island in the Lesser Antilles. The book opens with David Baptiste who is a fisherman from the small village of St. Constance, he takes his pirogue, which was the only value thing ...more
The book is primarily a flashback. In 1976 A fisherman, David Baptiste in the Caribbean island of Black Conch, spots a mermaid. The sighting changes his life in many ways. This part of the story is in the form of diary excerpts taking place during the years 2015/16.
During a fishing competition ...more
I have another book by the author + I'm almost tempted to start it right away. ...more
History becomes entwined with myth and legend, and still Roffey engages in genre-bending. Can the story of a mermaid be classified as a fable and not just a legend or folk tale? Aycayia provides lessons animals teach in fables, but ...more
She's written a fair few books before this one, and there's something very accomplished about it without at all ...more
This may be a novel about a mermaid and her love affair with a human but Disney it ain't. When Rasta fisherman, David rescues Aycayia, the titular mermaid from the hook of an obnoxious American tourist, he may be entranced by her strange beauty, but he also h ...more
Synopsis: One day while fis ...more
This book weaves the fantastical into the believable while exposing the many kinds of motivations that come from the human heart. A story about how jealousy is a curse, how greed distorts a person from acknowledgin ...more
I did stop to write down this quote which resonated with me. I hope it’s not a spoiler but in case you’re worried, look away now!
“I was not sure if this was my dreams come true. I was lonely, I missed the sea. I missed my loneliness. I was trying to understand everything, heart mixed up.”
The story is told from the point of view of a local fisherman, David Baptiste. It opens in 1976 when David goes out on the water early to smoke ganja and strum his guitar while waiting for a catch. A mile or so ...more
I too became enraptured by her...hook, line and sinker.
If you were to dismiss this novel thinking it is merely a story about a man who fell in love with a mermaid, you would be doing yourself an injustice.
Set in the Carribean village, I was initially drawn to the novel’s r ...more
Roffey is one of my favourite writers. I’ve read and loved all of her books. I discovered her work because she was featured in an Open University course I did several years ago. I found out about thus book during an episode of Richard and Judy’s lockdown reading show a couple of months ago and had to have it. I loved this book. I devoured it in one sitting. I’ve read and enjoyed a decent amount of fiction featuring mermaid mythology so was looking forward ...more
I tend to get stuck in specific genres. I fall into judging books by their covers, and I already have preconceived ideas of what types of stories are "for" me, what is worth my time. I know that I would never have picked up The Mermaid of Black Conch if it hadn't been loaned to me by a friend. This experience has taught me that I am really missing out!
This book is magical. I could not put it down. At a time when I needed e ...more
This is a beautiful, evocative, and unique novel. I knew I'd love it when I heard the author reading an extract from it on the radio. Set in the Caribbean, it draws on local ancient legends about merfolk, its central theme a powerful romance between a Black Conch fisherman and an ill-fated mermaid.
Monique Roffey has a wonderful flow to her writing that tantalises all your senses. She was raised in the Caribbean and much of this novel is written in local lingo, which ups the flavour of the story...more
|The Mookse and th...: 2020 Goldsmiths Shortlist - The Mermaid of Black Conch||29||63||Jan 05, 2021 12:42AM|
Her other novels have been shortlisted for The Orange Prize, COSTA Fiction Award, Encore and Orion Awards. In 2013, Archipelago won the OCM BOCAS Prize for Caribbean Literature. She is a Senior Lecturer ...more