A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review, and have not been compensated for this. All opinions are my own.
Published by Fathom Ink Press on May 30th 2017
Genres: Fairy Tales & Folklore, Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology, Mermaid Fiction, Science Fiction, Young Adult Fiction
A red tide is rising.
As the daughter of one of the mer-king’s trusted advisors, seventeen-year-old Jade has great responsibilities. When her fiancé murders a naiad, plunging the underwater city of Thessalonike into uproar, tensions surge between the mer and the naiads. Jade learns too late that the choices she makes ripple further than she'd ever imagined. And as she fights against the tide of anger in a city that lives for scandal, she discovers danger lurking in every canal, imperiling her family and shattering the ocean's fragile peace.
Can the city's divisions be mended before the upwelling of hate rips apart everything Jade loves?
Can I just pretend for a moment that I’m fifteen and I just discovered Breakwater by Catherine Jones Payne? Because, if I can? I’m gonna SQUEEEEE! Like a kid. I don’t even care! See? I’m the girl who wanted to be a mermaid when I grew up.
Imagine a young girl, sitting in a conservative, strict, Christian school. The kind that thinks fantasy is wrong, Star Wars is occultic and, well, Mermaids? Half-naked figments of Disney’s imagination.
The teacher had handed out papers for us to fill out with the statement, “When I grow up, I’d like to be.” Yep, I’m the slightly odd girl who wore glasses and had her head in the clouds. The bookish girl who already struggled to fit in. I—being the rather outcast booknerd that I am—answered: “A Mermaid.”
Yes, a parent-teacher meeting was scheduled. I guess they thought that a six-year-old in a Christian school should have answered like the other little girls and said things like nurse and missionary. I mean, I’m totally not putting down those other kids for their inspirational goals but I just wanted to be a mermaid.
This book is meant for Young Adults and I saw some reviews that sort of picked apart the antagonist for being shallow. Truth is? I get it. Yes, people of all ages can be shallow. As I already stated, I was a bit of an outcast, I understand how these so-called mean girls act.
But, I understand how people change, they evolve. Jade was a product of her society. She had been taught to fear the Naiad and I can understand her internal struggle. The important thing is that she put aside societal prejudices and chose to do what she felt was right.
Sure, she was a little spoiled and maybe she couldn’t relate with the Naiad as well as she thought. But, she took the steps (err, she swam?) towards becoming a better person. And, I think that counts for something.
The only reason I’m giving this a four-star rating instead of five is that I wanted to get to know the characters more. Jade and I have an understanding but I didn’t get very well acquainted with the supporting cast. Jade’s mom, her friends, and her love interests—these are characters I would have liked to have bonded with on a deeper level.