Just finished my latest YA read, and had to write the review right away. So here you go, enjoy my review of The Vicious Deep.
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Sourcebooks Fire
He was gone for three days. Sucked out to sea in a tidal wave and spit back ashore at Coney Island with no memory of what happened. Now his dreams are haunted by a terrifying silver mermaid with razor-sharp teeth.
His best friend Layla is convinced something is wrong. But how can he explain he can sense emotion like never before? How can he explain he’s heir to a kingdom he never knew existed? That he’s suddenly a pawn in a battle as ancient as the gods.
Something happened to him in those three days. He was claimed by the sea…and now it wants him back.
Summary from www.goodreads.com
I loved this book. Those four little words are the best, simplest way to say how awesome The Vicious Deep is. This is book caught me right from the first line, down to the last. The writing is powerful, moving, from lyrically soulful to quick witted and hilarious, but always through it all, it was real and raw. I could totally picture this book playing out in my head, from the clothes they wore to the scenes that devastated me because they were so poignant. And yet, the author doesn't overuse words. She just uses them really well.
What caught my attention the most about this, was that story is about merfolk. Merpeople. Mermaids. Whatever. I thought to myself, oooh, now this is different. I didn't really know what to expect, although I did expect to like it. And even though it's about merfolk, it's not at all girly. And not just because the main character is a guy slash merman. Or merdude; like Tristan, I like that better. I loved his first person narration (hearing a male point of view was refreshing to say the least) and I loved how honest he was. And how hilarious, I can't count the number of times this book made me laugh out loud. Or how many times it touched my heart. But I digress. The book is edgy, filled with evil sea creatures called merrows and Tristan must compete in a championship to win his throne, and he has become the target of the evil sea witch Nieve. No singing mermaids in this book. On top of this, Tristan has to deal with being half merman. He's always been just good looking Tristan Hart, amazing swimmer who all the girls (except the one he wants) have a thing for. The first person narration really lent itself well to this novel, and I've fallen in love with Tristan. Because, at heart, he's honest and true and I love those kind of characters.
Layla: stubborn, fiery, loyal, I love her. She doesn't take sh*t and she won't let Tristan dish it out.
Kurt: cool and collected but with a fiery interior we get glimpses of. He's kick ass.
Thalia: cute, sensitive, too young for the world but spirited. I really like her. And I feel awful for her too.
Marty: Regular beach dude with a great sense of humour and timing. Oh, and the ability to shape shift. I hope we see more of him.
Gwen: Tristan might like her, and she hasn't done anything yet to make me think she might be bad, but I got the bad mojo feeling about this one. Too mysterious and all knowing for my taste. Might just be I don't like her because I'm thinking she might be Layla's competition.
Tristan: well, I already said I love him, but it warrants saying again. I love that by the end of the book he promises he will never hurt another girl again because it shows how far he's come from being a guy who accidentally hurt girls (emotionally) he dated to being a guy who is now thinking more about others than having fun.
I love the relationships in this book too, because like in real life, they're complex and not always easy to understand. We've got a lot of interesting characters, and I'm having a heart attack wondering where the next book will take us now that a love square of sorts seems to be setting up. And I'm pretty darn annoyed by it because I want Tristan and Layla together! Being in Tristan's head all throughout this book, I know exactly how much he loves her and it's killing me thinking he might become interested in Gwen. I'm hoping I'm just reading my own fears about that into the book. The wonderful thing about these relathionships is, they play out without it feeling like teenage angst. It reads are far more mature, with far more depth and I loved it. I loved every little thing about this book.
I. Have. A. Freaking. Tail. (page 64)
I follow [the vampire's] stare at the speckle of stars. Suddenly I wonder, "Aren't you guys supposed to, like, sparkle, or something?" And immediately wish I hadn't. Frederick stands up so quick that he doesn't disturb the sand. He grabs the front of my shirt and growls--his eyes are black as the night sky along the horizon, and red veins fray against the white of his eyes. He sharp canines are exposed. "I. Don't.Sparkle." (page 317-318)
She's my best friend. She's my Layla. She's my girl. (page 17)
5 glittering stars