I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: Falling in Deep Collection
on June 9, 2015
Buy on Amazon
Cast into the sea at birth, human-born Ia found her adoptive family among the merfolk. While her underwater upbringing was peaceful, Ia’s blood-heritage and the strict societal rules of the merpeople lead her to wonder of the world above the waves.
When a storm lands Ia ashore, she discovers her body has transformed into the human she would have been. Taken in as property by a callous plantation owner, Ia works alongside the slaves until she can make her way back to the water. There is nothing Ia wants more than to go home, that is, until she meets a handsome, troubled man named Matthias, who has a touch that can be as kind as his tongue is harsh.
Torn between two very different lives, Ia must choose – stay in his world and risk her life for a love untested, or return to the familiar arms of the underwater world that raised her and risk losing what may be the greatest love she will ever know.
Will Ia’s choice lead to happiness or her destruction?
Just… wow. This is not your mother’s mermaid story. And DEFINITELY not your daughter’s either. This story toed the line to being too dark, but that was also one of the best things about it. Aside from the mermaids, this story was historically accurate (or at least as far as I could tell, being a layman). There was death, abuse, sex both consensual and non. At times it was downright painful to read, but I kept going because there are dark parts of our history that shouldn’t be ignored. Slavery happened. The fact that A.R. Draeger didn’t shy away from this darkness meant so much to me. A lesser author would fade to black, or just infer these crimes. Bravo, Amber! She is seriously an author to watch out for. This was just her debut, so I can’t even imagine what she has in store next!
I’m not a huge mermaid fan, but I’ve really enjoyed going through this particular mermaid collection. The authors have all taken such completely different approaches with this loose theme. Some of them are light and fun, while you may not crack a smile at others. I’ve had goosebumps on more than one occasion. Of Ocean and Ash didn’t revolve around mermaids, but more about what plantation life was like from a slave’s perspective. Amber’s writing style pulled me right in, and I found myself in Ia’s shoes, far too easily.
If I had to have a complaint, it’s that the characters are all too right or wrong, without all the shades of grey. There’s never any doubt about who the heroes are. Or the villains… BUT that also gave me the whole length of the book to plot my revenge on these despicable creatures! GRRR!
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A.R. (Amber) Draeger resides in rural Texas with her husband, Josh, and son, Logan. When not writing or reading, she is watching reality TV shows or tromping through the nearby woods.