Friday

Mermaid: A Twist on the Classic Tale by Carolyn Turgeon

Title: Mermaid: A Twist on the Classic Tale
Author: Carolyn Turgeon
Pages:  256
Genre:  Adult Fiction/ Fantasy
Source: Amazon Vine Program

As a big fan of 'Disney's The Little Mermaid' and having read Ms. Turgeon's Godmother a few years back, I knew that I could not go without reading this dark and gothic retelling.   

Obviously Hans Christian Andersen's tale of The Little Mermaid is the back bone of this story, but sadly I've never read his version so I can't do any comparisons to his work. What I can tell you is that this is the story of two sheltered princesses.  One princess resides on the land while the other lives "under the sea" (I couldn't help myself!).  

Using alternating chapters you learn of both princesses and how their lives collide.  Princess Margrethe lives in a world of turmoil.  Her northern kingdom is at constant war with the South and at the current moment she finds herself in hiding at a convent.  Lenia is the youngest daughter of the merfolk King and Queen.  She loves her life, home and family but constantly finds herself longing for more than what she has.  Since she has now reached an age where she can go to the surface, she finds herself saving a young prince who is nearly drowned.  She knows to save him she must return him to land and does so leaving him in the care of Margarethe.  From this selfless act, Lenia, Margarethe and the prince, all from different worlds, will find themselves bound together forever.

There were so many things I loved about this book.  Ms. Turgeon's writing is unique and even poetic at times.  I found that I felt as if someone were reading the story to me.  I found it atmospheric in its medieval setting - although you never truly know where it takes place or during what year.  I enjoyed reading of Margarethe's kingdom and how bleak their lives are due to the constant warring with the South. But I absolutely devoured Lenia's chapters.  I love her descriptions of life "under the sea" (haha), her sisters, her kingdom and their beliefs.  

My only qualm with the story was how both women fell in love with the same prince and the guy had barely even spoken a sentence.  I understand it's a fairytale retelling and these things just happen when it comes to fairytales... but it still irked me that he was the reason why Lenia would have her tongue cut-out, live in constant pain the moment she gained her feet and quite possibly give her life for him.  Margarethe was also willing to make sacrifices in order to gain the Prince's attention.  But although I found that my Girl Power! feelings were hurt, I still think Ms. Turgeon handled the situation wisely.  She made you, in time, understand the inner turmoil within the young women, and their intense feelings for their Prince.  She also expertly described the love that Margarethe felt for Lenia - one that could leave you forever aching and restless.

This was definitely a fairytale for adults - one that I'm glad that I had the opportunity to read.  It had the  dream-like quality that I find necessary for a fairytale to work, but it was also riddled with very real and strong emotions leaving the reader wanting more of this world.

My Rating:

12 comments:

KM said...

I really want to read this one! I haven't seen any reviews yet before yours, so I'm glad you enjoyed it :)

Tina said...

awesome review Nely- I cant wait to read this book!!..:) Sorry your girl feelings were crushed!

Tipsy - tipsyreader.com said...

Ooo I got chills reading your review! I must find it, thanks for the heads up!

Sorilla said...

I totally understand the romantic character of a Mermaid, but sometimes wonder how men(young men) in general feel about the mermaids. And you said that the "guy had barely even spoken a sentence", hmm... Do we really need a men there, lol?

~Sorilla

Tena @ Crazy Book Slut said...

OOOoooooooooooh!! Adding this to my list now

Chrystal said...

Hmm adding this to my wishlist now. :) Thanks for the review.

librarypat said...

Have read several reviews of this book and all have had high praise for it. This sounds like it will be an interesting variation on this tale. I look forward to reading it,

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Amazing review. If I wasn't already sold your review would have sold me. Bravo!

Evy said...

Love the cover ! And I can't wait to read this book !

Kailana said...

My library just bought this, so I am looking forward to reading it!

A World Inside a Dream... said...

Another amazing looking book I just have to add to my reading list. It sounds amazing

Chuck Surridge said...

awesome review Nely- I cant wait to read this book!!..:) Sorry your girl feelings were crushed!

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