Sunday, May 27, 2012

Review: 'Lies Beneath' by Anne Greenwood Brown

Lies Beneath (Lies Beneath #1)Lies Beneath #1

Expected publication: June 12th 2012 
Delacorte Books for Young Readers

Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans, killing them to absorb their energy. But this summer the underwater clan targets Jason Hancock out of pure revenge. They blame Hancock for their mother's death and have been waiting a long time for him to return to his family's homestead on the lake. Hancock has a fear of water, so to lure him in, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter, Lily. Easy enough—especially as Calder has lots of practice using his irresistable good looks and charm on ususpecting girls. Only this time Calder screws everything up: he falls for Lily—just as Lily starts to suspect that there's more to the monsters-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined. And just as his sisters are losing patience with him.

"I hadn't killed anyone all winter," what a dangerous way to start things off. In fact, that line alone had my adrenaline going and eager for more. 

It's not often you find a main character who's far from being gentle, kind, and innocent. These things Calder White is not, at least not all the time, but that doesn't take away from the honor he depicts in wanting to take revenge for the death of his mother. Isn't that somewhat admirable? However, draining human life is not. Still, what I liked about this book is that the characters are anything but sweet. Calder is...different. And I could go on and on about his otherworldly characteristics but the one big thing that caught my attention is that he's the narrator. How rare is it for me to read a book told from the point of view of a male character? Very rare indeed, which is why I was even more enthralled by this one.

Calder is in my opinion the most interesting character but I certainly couldn't pass over his sisters, particularly the eldest Maris. This chick is a piece of work. Someone needs to pour her a glass of martini and give her a nice, soothing full body massage, because she obviously has a lot of built up anger. Then again, maybe what she needs is anger management. Maris is the meanie of the story. Her vengeful nature pisses me off more than it needs to. I literally had to stop, compose myself, and snap back to the realization that this is just a book. Not. Real. The other two sisters were much better to deal with. My favorite is actually Tallulah, though her clingy behavior towards her brother seemed annoying and at times...unnatural. Pav, on the other hand failed to leave her beautiful mark on me.

I think the author did a good job in terms of word play and establishing a historical background for each character, but what I couldn't help but notice my lack of interest in the main girl, Lily. Her character seemed incomplete; Almost as if Anne was unsure as to where this teen girl would fit in the story. Unfortunately, I never warmed up to Lily at all until the end. 

The relationship between Calder and Lily is one you'd consider bittersweet; aside from the fact that his main agenda was to lure her father into the lake to meet his end, the love they have for each other complicates things, a lot. I was overjoyed with the fact that Calder had found love and could put his 'darker' side to rest, maybe even realize that there's more to life than hate and revenge, and a world without his miserable older sister reminding him that he's a merman. Like we don't already know that Maris. 

Overall, I'm contented with the first book in this enchanting series. And with this debut author's writing style. Lies Beneath is impeccably magical. Anne established a story that not only revived mythical creatures but painted a less than perfect love amidst a century of hate. This is a book you're bound to enjoy.

Anne Greenwood BrownAbout the Author
Anne Greenwood Brown is a Minnesota author, writing about mermaid assassins on Lake Superior. Her debut YA series begins with LIES BENEATH. The sequel (currently titled WATER LILY) is anticipated for March 2013. Besides writing and reading YA literature, Anne loves all things Irish, romantic movies, beef stroganoff, and Nutella. If she's listening to music it's Violent Femmes, The Coronas (awesome band out of Dublin), and Great Big Sea (out of Newfoundland).

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  1. Thanks for this review! I had mixed feelings about this book at first for some reason, but most of the reviews I've heard are positive. Sounds like the author did a good job on the characters and that's so important for me! I hope to read this soon (:

    - Kim

    1. I was iffy at first but my itching for Wrecked had me interested in wanting to read more mermaid books. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. This sounds great! I've been wanting to read this book for a while so it's great to see you enjoyed it. Awesome review! :)

  3. This sounds really interesting. The trailer has me curious.

    Clean Teen Fiction
    Clean Adult Fiction

    1. I was persuaded by the trailer is an interesting read. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. I'll be reviewing this book later in October. I enjoyed the different viewpoint, too.


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