Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Mermaid's Mirror by L.K. Madigan: Review
Posted by Tiffany at 9:28 AM

Title: The Mermaid's Mirror
Author: L.K. Madigan (livejournal)
Published: October 4th, 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Pages: 336 eBook
Price: $10.88 Amazon $12.62 Book Depository
Series: Author has ideas for sequels, nothing official
Rating: 3.5/5
Synopsis: Lena has lived her whole life near the beach—walking for miles up and down the shore and breathing the salty air, swimming in the cold water, and watching the surfers rule the waves—the problem is, she’s spent her whole life just watching. 

As her sixteenth birthday approaches, Lena vows she will no longer watch from the sand: she will learn to surf. 

But her father – a former surfer himself – refuses to allow her to take lessons. After a near drowning in his past, he can’t bear to let Lena take up the risky sport. 

Yet something lures Lena to the water … an ancient, powerful magic. One morning Lena catches sight of this magic: a beautiful woman—with a silvery tail. 

Nothing will keep Lena from seeking the mermaid, not even the dangerous waves at Magic Crescent Cove. 

And soon … what she sees in the mermaid’s mirror will change her life … (Goodreads)

Initial Thoughts: The formatting on this one was a bit messed up and it wouldn't work right on my Nook, so I almost gave up on reading it. However, once I started reading it, I was drawn right into the story.

Review: The first page is fantastic, a great example of how to draw a reader in immediately. Lena is a very likeable character. Her family is a bit cheesy (group hugs every  time they see each other), but that's probably left over from the first draft, which was meant to be a middle grade book. I felt that the relationships she had with her friends were very authentic. Her best friend starts ditching her when she gets a new boyfriend, her boyfriend likes her a LOT more than she likes him, nothing is perfect. They felt like the kind of characters, in the kind of situations, that you see every day at school. I can't tell you much about the secrets that she discovers, except that they aren't exactly SHOCKING. I had a lot of it figured out early on, but there was enough to the story that wasn't obvious that it was never boring. The book splits into two different parts, different settings, and I can't help but feel that it might have been better to split it into two books. The second part feels a bit rushed. It would have made a great trilogy, with this as two books and the third tying everything up. The author's site says that she has ideas for sequels, but no official plans yet. I'm hoping she writes at least one. I need to know what happens! My only real problem with this book was that it felt, at times, a bit too much like Middle Grade with making out thrown in.
Quick Review: I enjoyed this story about a girl who keeps sleepwalking to the sea. It was original, mysterious, and engaging. If it weren't for the mild sexual content, I would say that it should've been labelled Middle Grade, rather than YA, but it's still a good read.