A retelling that will make you wonder if mermaids exist.
This has been the year of the mermaids. They were everywhere! Although my mermaid obsession fizzled out when I hit my teenage years, I’ve always been a fan of paranormal romance, and if that included mermaids, then I was game.
When I picked up Murphy’s Shearwater, I’d already read quite a few stories about mermaids. Murphy set Clara’s story in our day and age, but created an elaborate mermaid or “merrow” (as he calls them) myth, so elaborate that for a second, I wondered if mermaids could potentially exist amongst us. Questioning the boundaries between reality and fiction is one of the signs that a story has hooked me.
Another sign is when I begin losing sleep to read just a few more pages…that turn out to be a few more chapters. Following Clara was an enthralling adventure. She’s a spunky heroine with a real backbone who overcame great grief and built a solid circle of friends in her new home. When she finds herself falling for Sebastian, I found myself falling for him as well. The potential for a love triangle is there, but Murphy hasn’t overly drawn it out, which I found refreshing. Too many YA novels are built on all-encompassing love triangles, which produce wishy-washy, lovesick characters.
The setting is also something to be noted in Shearwater. It was vivid and poetic, and added texture to the tight web of stories Murphy expertly wove together.
I’ve seen Shearwater compared to Twilight taken to the ocean, and I think there’s no better analogy. However, everything happens faster in Murphy’s story. It’s like Meyer’s four books rolled up in one. Which makes me that much more curious to discover where he plans on taking Clara’s story in book 2.