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Nightmare Illustrated: issue 8
Posted: Oct 22 2011, 06:54 AM
Member No.: 24
Joined: 27-November 07
Hey there gang, come on in and we`ll pass along more word of mouth! This time around we`ll be chatting about the novel ‘Mermaid’ by Carolyn Turgeon. I had the pleasure of meeting, and having my copy of her book signed by Ms. Turgeon at a recent author event at my local indie bookstore ‘From My Shelf Books’ in Wellsboro. She is a warm and delightful woman and her fey spirit shows in this latest novel. Ms. Turgeon also has a book out titled ‘Godmother’ which deals with the true story of Cinderella`s fairy godmother. I plan to grab that one as well on my next trip to Kevin and Kasey`s shop. Let`s get into a little more about ‘Mermaid’ though, shall we?
I know most of us are familiar with the classic Hans Christian Andersen fable ‘The Little Mermaid’ and also, many of us have seen the Disney movie based on Mr. Andersen`s classic tale. ‘Mermaid’ is a retelling of this beloved story but it has a definite twist that is darn ingenious. In Ms. Turgeon`s telling we get the story from two sides, the mermaid Lenia and the princess Margrethe. As per the original story, Lenia dreams of the world above the sea and one day rescues a handsome man from a shipwreck. She falls for him instantly as she carries him to shore. Now, this is where we get a nice little twist, because it`s at this time that the Princess Margrethe is brought into the tale. While standing in a convent garden, where she is hiding from her father`s enemies in the South, she witnesses the mermaid coming to shore with a half-drowned man. By the time the princess reaches the shore, the mermaid is gone.
As Margrethe nurses the stranger back to health she discovers that she is falling in love with him, and that he is the son of her father`s Southern enemy. The princess feels that Lenia brought the prince to her for a reason so she devices a plan that will hopefully bring peace to her shattered land. Of course while all of this is occurring on land, beneath the waves Lenia has come to a decision about this prince that has stolen her heart. She decides to do whatever is needed to return to him, even if it means giving up her legs, her home and her voice.
Ms. Turgeon spins a clever and perfectly written love triangle that keeps you riveted until the end of the book. The characters are well crafted and I found myself torn between who should win the prince`s heart. I felt deeply for both young women as they experienced their first love. The plot moves along at a lovely clip, not too rushed or too slow and the details are glorious! I was especially drawn into the realm under the sea that was so artfully crafted by the author. This is a heartbreaking and dark story though, make no mistake about it. For anyone thinking this is a little child`s book think again! There is pain, suffering and sex. The love scenes are nicely done I`d like to add, since that is an important aspect for me, the steamy lover of spicy affairs that I am!
I found ‘Mermaid’ to be a joyful and at times tearful read. Anytime a book can take me to the summit and then pull me to the depths of emotion I have to applaud the author and make sure I pass along the good word. I highly recommend ‘Mermaid’ to anyone that is looking for a love story that is poignant and compelling and highly imaginative.