Mermother: An Account of What Happened in the Sea

Elizabeth Jane
Young Adult

Little does Briony know that she has been chosen by the mer’s (not mermaids), to be the next mermother. When she falls off of a yacht late one night, she wakes up the next morning having slept in a tide pool. She is soon befriended by Sylvie, a mer, who has come to teach her many things about the sea, including the life of mers, and how they reproduce. The longer Briony stays with Sylvie, the more her body is changing into what the mer’s have chosen her for, to bear their young. Should she stay in the ocean where she feels at home, although a bit lonely? Or should she return to the less than happy life she was living?

What a unique, and interesting concept to a story! The biggest thing missing in this novel, is the lack of a back story where Briony is concerned. One only gets a glimpse of a possible abusive relationship. Many times characters and situations went against common sense, making it hard to buy into the story ( so her life isn’t a happy one, but shouldn’t she be freaking out, after waking up in a tide pool?) Sylvie’s character tends to bring out mixed emotions, one day she is nice, the next she is irritating and unlikeable. The mer’s also have a tendency to be vain, selfish, and materialistic. Readers may find the ending unsatisfying, while not a textbook cliff hanger, it does leave one with more questions than answers. As Ms. Wolfe’s first novel, however, one can see great potential in her unusual characters, and creative imagination!

Tonya Smalley