Sunday, June 12, 2016

Vicious Deep by Zoraida Cordova

I was able to receive this book through Reader's Legacy which is an awesome book reader community and place to buy books.  I discovered it accidently one day and love it.  So Vicious Deep is a story about Tristan, a high school student who serves as a life guard for the beach at Coney Island.  When a freak storm sweeps Tristan away, he is discovered alive 3 days later, a completely different person.  He begins have weird nightmares and noticing his senses have gotten stronger.  Then suddenly he grows a new appendage...a tail.  In  a short time he learns his mom was a mermaid princess and the Sea King wants Tristan as his next heir.  But Tristan needs to compete with other members of the royal court in order to find the scattered pieces of the king's Trident.  But the other champions are not the only people hunting Tristan and his friends.  Will Tristan be able to accept his fate as a merman and find the pieces he needs to become king?

I am happy to see a YA fantasy novel focusing on a male lead, lately most of my leads have been strong females.  Not only do we have a male lead in this tale, but also a merman rather than a mermaid.  It begins with Tristan coming off as a douchebag, male slut type of character kissing random girls at parties and breaking hearts.  But as the story progresses he becomes a strong character with his interests and concerns shifting to accepting his new heritage and what decisions he needs to make.  Will he accept being the new king or will he sacrifice his tale to be with the girl he loves?  Only we don't find out the answer, we have to read the next book(s) in the series to find out, and I for one cannot wait to get my hands on the next book in this series.

 Cordova does an excellent job at presenting readers with a tale that is both entralling and unique.  While the idea of mermaids is not new, most stories focus on women, not mermen.  This story adds a new twist to a treasured legend and makes it possible to believe in these creatures again.  I love the addition of mythology with Poseidon, and how the race has dwindled throughout the ages.  I also enjoyed the element that the merfolk have magical powers unique to each one rather than focusing on the lore of mermaid leading humans to their deaths.    I was completely captivated with this story and read it within the night, I refused to go to bed until I finished the story, and  I may have grumbled when I got to the end because I didn't want it to end.

Congratulations to Cordova for a wonderful story and meeting a need in the fantasy/folklore genre.  I anticipate reading more novels in the series as well as any other written.  I would give this a 4 out of 5 simply because there were moments that seemed like they did not fit in with the story, but there are so many other elements that kept me on the edge of my seat.

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