Source: Review copy provided by author
Synopsis: What lies beneath the surface? One hundred years from now, the world has changed and brought with it, new forms of life. Who are the Mers? Who is Mira? Mira always knew she was different. Growing up with Mers, she never quite fit in. When Mira breaks the rules and takes Niren across the border that divides Ellis Island and New Jersey, a border that divides two vastly different worlds, she thought the journey to find out who she really is would be an easy one. But as the world in Jersey proves to be a convoluted mix of Aristocrats who hate the Mers, Pirates who want to sell them, and Magi who want to use them…finding her true identity will be a challenge, especially when her best friend Niren is a Mer willing to fight to the death.
Review: The Mers offers a new, unique edge to the YA paranormal genre. This mermaid dystopian story follows young Mira who has never been quite sure whether she was a Mer or a human. She lives on Liberty Shore with the Mer community, only she doesn’t display the typical Mer physical appearance of webbed limbs and extremities. These qualities make them excellent swimmers, features that have evolved in the community over time. The Mers remain in their island home for fear of being kidnapped by pirates who sell Mer products to humans. Mira, who looks human but feels like Mer is experiencing identity confusion. So, she creates a plan to escape Liberty Shores across the seas to find out whether she belongs to the human community. She ends up taking along with her boyfriend Niren who is a true Mer.
The Mers is essentially a quest story, where Mira goes in search of her true identity and in doing so faces many challenges and barriers. This novel brings up themes of identity, prejudice and acceptance. The romance between Mira and Niren is quite sweet and their acceptance of each other is quite sweet. However, because they get together quite early in the story, the usual romantic suspence in this YA novel is absent. I was a little disappointed that the story wasn’t about mermaids in the true sense, rather humans with mermaid features. But the evolutionary description provided by the author was quite realistic. This is a really interesting story that I recommend for YA readers who are interested in a new genre to sink their teeth into.
For more information about the author and where to purchase, visit Ami’s site