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A Reader of Fictions: Rolling in the Deep (cover) - Linkin Park

A Reader of Fictions

Book Reviews for Just About Every Kind of Book

Monday, July 2, 2012

Rolling in the Deep (cover) - Linkin Park

Lies Beneath
Lies Beneath, Book 1

Author: Anne Greenwood Brown
Pages: 303
Publisher: Delacorte BFYR
Source: Random House via NetGalley

Description from Goodreads:
Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistable good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.

First Sentence: "I hadn't killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that."

Mermaids and I have had a bit of a tortured history. I want to like mermaid books, I really do. However, my experiences with them have not been hugely positive. Lies Beneath is one that I would feel comfortable recommending to people, even though I was not in love myself. This book came so close to being a really good mermaid book for me, but just didn't quite make it.

What I did like about Lies Beneath quite a bit was the writing. Anne Greenwood Brown definitely has talent. I like the way she puts her sentences together. She doesn't write down to teens at all, which I'm always happy to see. I also really loved the usage of the poetry in the book.

Now, let's talk about the romance. I'm really not entirely sure how I feel about it. On the surface (water pun!), Lily and Calder's relationship falls into the typical YA paranormal relationship: dangerous paranormal boy and the girl who cannot resist him because he's oh so pretty. Not to mention the fact that I was a little uncomfortable with how young Lily seemed, especially when paired with the fact that Calder is who knows how old and a killer merman.

However, there was another side to their romance that was a bit more unique that makes me somewhat okay with it. Lily, though she is attracted to Calder, does not immediately give into that. She hides it successfully for a while. It takes her some time to trust him. She confronts him openly and repeatedly about what his deal is and why he's following her around. That, I liked. In the end, though, she still goes for him, and isn't particularly angry to learn that he's lied to her or tried to kill her dad. Considering that she loves her family, her reaction was completely unbelievable.

The real problem I had with Lies Beneath, though, was the world building. Basically, I cannot fathom (another water pun!) how mermaid respiration works. I can totally accept that they shift into their mermaid forms. When human, they breathe like people do; as mermaids, they can breath underwater. What I don't get is why they can breathe underwater AND above the water in their mermaid forms.

Fish breathe via their gills. Do the mermaids have gills on their tails? That would explain why they can breathe with their heads out of the water, since the tail would still be submerged. Unfortunately, that does not explain how Calder was able to breathe oxygen into Lily's mouth while they swam around. Even if he does breathe through his human mouth, he wouldn't be exhaling oxygen. Humans don't exhale oxygen and neither do fish. I guess he could be processing the water into oxygen and immediately passing it to her, but I just had trouble with the whole thing.

If you're a reader that is frustrated by little details, like I am, you may want to try another book. However, if you're note, Lies Beneath is a well-written paranormal romance novel.

Rating: 3/5

Favorite Quote: 'Forgiveness isn't just for them, Calder. It's for you. Forgiveness is freedom. It's something you do for yourselfto keep who you are intact. Now that I think about it—in some ways, it's kind of a selfish act.'"

Note on Today's Song Choice: All of the lyrics don't work, but I think this really sums up how Calder feels about Lily. 

"There's a fire starting in my heart
Reaching a fever pitch, it's bringing me out the dark
Finally I can see you crystal clear
Go 'head and sell me out and I'll lay your ship
[shit] bare
See how I leave with every piece of you
Don't underestimate the things that I will do

There's a fire starting in my heart

Reaching a fever pitch
And it's bringing me out the dark

The scars of your love remind me of us

They keep me thinking that we almost had it all
The scars of your love, they leave me breathless
I can't help feeling
We could have had it all
(You're gonna wish you never had met me)
Rolling in the deep

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Blogger Bekka said...

Hmm. Did he breathe like a dolphin would? Like take in a shit ton of oxygen and then go under for an amount of time? I feel like that is the only way that mermaid breathing would make sense to me.

July 3, 2012 at 12:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that we had similar reactions to this book. I did get hung up on some of the details and I was just not impressed. Great review.

July 3, 2012 at 12:03 AM  
Blogger aLilLacey said...

So I've never read a mermaid book and didn't expect there to be one about mermaids that kill. Maybe i should give it a go and find out my own opinion on some mermaids and try to look past the technicalities of how a mermaid works? Thanks for the review!

August 1, 2012 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

No, he could breathe underwater. Somehow. They were underwater for ages and he breathed air into her lungs. URGH.

August 1, 2012 at 1:48 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

Yeah, I feel like Brown could write a book I would really like, because her writing was good, but the story and characters...not so much.

August 1, 2012 at 1:49 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

Supposedly, Monstrous Beauty is the best of the mermaid books coming out this year. I think they're also vicious ones. :)

August 1, 2012 at 1:49 PM  
Blogger Katie Marie said...

Very enlightening review. Thank you! I haven't read any mermaid books yet, though I have been kinda interested in at least trying a few. See if I like them. This was one of the books that kinda caught my eye--made me consider getting it and trying a mermaid book. I think I'll keep looking...what annoyed you would kinda annoy me too...but who knows, if my library gets it sometimes in the future, I'd probably give it a go.

Anywho, thanks for the thorough review~

August 2, 2012 at 11:22 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Mermaid books haven't worked out to well for me so far. Monstrous Beauty is supposed to be good. *crosses fingers*

August 2, 2012 at 1:12 PM  
Blogger Jaime Lester said...

Another long lost twin, perhaps? (I don't really have any that I know of? Hmmm?) I have tried so many times to fall in love with just one mermaid book. Only one, and I would be satisfied, but I have yet to find a single one that just enthralled me from beginning to end. Lies Beneath is the one that I actually liked for the most part, but it definitely wasn't love. I just don't know what it is about mermaids. I loved The Little Mermaid when I was a youngin. Maybe it was just so good way back then that nothing can touch it now? Who knows, but I have high hopes (semi-high hopes) that one day I will find myself a mer story that sticks!

August 12, 2012 at 9:23 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

Yup, I'm still looking for that elusive mermaid book. The closest I've come is a book about a woman who researches mermaid myths, but there aren't any mermaids in it, so it only counts peripherally. Siren by Tricia Rayburn was okay; I liked it just a bit more than this one.

August 13, 2012 at 8:04 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

Lies Beneath has been on my to-read list for awhile and your review has me convinced that I might like it. Hopefully I'll start reading it soon. Nice review! :D

December 30, 2012 at 2:39 PM  

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