Sunday, November 7, 2010
The Mermaid's Mirror by L. K. Madigan
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
From the Publishers:
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 ...
I really enjoyed the author's writing in this novel. The book can be divided into two parts: life with her father on the land and life with her mother in the sea. Lena has spent her life with her father, step-mother and younger brother living in a beautiful home near the ocean. While most of her friends love surfing, she has been reluctant to try because her father had some sort of accident. As it turns out the "accident" was not a surfing accident at all but a run-in with Lena's mother's family who just happen to be mermaids. I have to admit that I enjoyed the section of the novel where Lena remains on land a lot better than the section where she is under the ocean with her mermaid mother and her extended family. I thought that the mermaid part of the novel would have been a little more in depth that it was. I feel that Madigan could have made it a much more magical land than it was. I also found it hard to form a connection as a reader to Lena's maternal family. I felt a stronger connection with her paternal family because I felt that they were more empathetic and also more well-rounded characters. I wasn't entirely satisfied with the ending either. I feel that the author may have left the book open to a sequel which would make the ending alright but if there is no sequel I feel there is still a lot more that I want to know. Overall though, I really enjoyed reading this novel. It was creative and I always wanted to know more about what was happening. I give this book 3.5 stars out of 5.