Official Rating: 1.5/5
“She wanted her life to change… he wanted his to stay the same.
Best friends share everything with each other. Or do they? Seventeen-year-old Ashlyn Frances Lanski is tired of her boring, single life. Spending time with her best friend Tatiana, dreaming about kissing Tatiana’s twin brother Fin, and swimming competitively are her only sanctuary. The girls plan to leave their drab lakeside town far behind for college. But when Tatchi fails to return home after a family emergency, and no one knows where the family has gone, Ash chooses to do something drastic to find them.
Ashlyn is about to discover what she’d thought to be true her whole life, wasn’t, and the truth, too fantastical to imagine. Secrets lurk beneath the deep blue waters of Lake Tahoe, secrets that will change Ashlyn’s life forever.”
First off, this book was painfully slow and the synopsis is misleading. I’m guessing that “he”, is Fin, but he actually does want his life to change. Ashlyn, the heroine, is the one who cries at the thought of her life changing. The first half of the book was alternating chapters that had very little to do with the plot and were mind-numbing. For the most part, it was about Ashlyn’s upcoming swim meet and prom. There was also a painful love square. A square. Is that even legal? The book dragged on and on and there is absolutely no need for this to be a series.
The characters were painful, Ashlyn’s mother is a woman who does her best to make Ash feel terrible about herself, although it’s “balanced out” by her every now and then warm gestures. Her Dad, although supposed to be rarely around because he’s a fireman, is around very often, but does little to help the situation between Ash and her Mom. Instead he insists that she “talk to her” about it and leaves it at that, rather than either speaking to her Mom about it or having her Mom sit with them. Her sister was only there to bother Ashlyn for no reason and her grandparents were just there to move the plot along.Anyone besides Ashlyn and Fin, were just pawns for the author to use to nudge the plot along. Ashlyn herself has very little character, complaining about prom and her upcoming swim meet. While I understand her apprehension towards the meet she has coming up, I just don’t see why those two things had to be such a large part of the book. It just filled it with fluff that I couldn’t care less about. A lot of times I skipped her side of the book and read Fin’s because his was a lot more interesting, and I didn’t miss a thing.
The one true soul mate thing bothered me. The whole concept is that if a merperson kisses a) a mermaid/merman, they both love each other completely or b) a human, the merman/maid loves the human completely, and the human feels a weird need to be around them forever. What happens with accidental kissing? Those times when you turn your head and they turn theirs and suddenly whoops! Was that your lips? And at the end, when Azor forcefully kisses Tatchi so that she’ll fall in love with him. That’s wrong. He forced himself upon her and now while she hates him, she has to love him. I think the concept could’ve been thought up better. Or even before that, when Fin gives Ashlyn mouth-to-mouth and they’re bonded and suddenly her boyfriend, a quarterback, looks “less delicious” and she’s not sure if he’s devoted to her anyway. Really? What a terrible thing to do. Anyone will ill intentions could easily cause someone to fall in love with them against their will.
I didn’t really see any actual chemistry between Fin and Ashlynn, I’m not sure why they even like each other. They just seemed to be totally infatuated with each other, ready to move across the world for each other, but I just didn’t know why. For two people who secretly love each other, why would a) Fin go scouting out for mermaids and b) Ashlyn suddenly get a boyfriend just because she doesn’t see Fin twenty-four-seven? (The boyfriend was also a plot nudger) What is so great about Ashlyn? She doesn’t do anything and she makes poor decisions that endangers her life and others. Fin, I could sort of see why Ashlyn liked him. He’s sweet and caring, a bit naive, and from the descriptions I gathered, good-looking too. I still didn’t see enough interaction between them as to why they fell in love.
Religion was mixed into the story as well, almost all the characters would say “Thank God” or “gift that God had given him/her” or “Would you like to pray?”. The only issue I had with that was it was ill-placed, as if having religion in the story was an after-thought and sloppily placed in to push it at the reader.
I was hoping for an interesting tale about mermaids and an interesting heroine with gorgeous red hair to match the cover, but instead I got a rather bland book about an indecisive boring teenager who had major issues with facing her problems and had a crush on her best friend’s brother, insta-love, suspense-less scenes, one-dimensional characters, lies until she feels really guilty, overly coincidental events, less than ideal reactions to certain situations, and a poorly pieced together cliffhanger.