Book Review: Tangled Tides by Karen Amanda Hooper

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For someone who likes watching mermaid films and once dreamed of being a mermaid, I never once had interest in reading mermaid novels. I don’t know why that is, but in my quest to be the wide reader my mom claimed me to be, I asked Karen Amanda Hooper for a digital copy Tangled Tides in exchange for an honest review. That said, I would like to thank her for introducing me to the wonderful world of merfolk, selkies, and other mythical creatures mentioned in the book.

Tangled Tides book cover

Tangled Tides (The Sea Monster Memoirs #1)

by Karen Amanda Hooper

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Yara Jones doesn’t believe in sea monsters-until she becomes one. When a hurricane hits her island home and she wakes up with fins, Yara finds herself tangled up in an underwater world of mysterious merfolk and secretive selkies. Both sides believe Yara can save them by fulfilling a broken promise and opening the sealed gateway to their realm, but they are battling over how it should be done. The selkies want to take her life. The merfolk want something far more precious.

Treygan, the stormy-eyed merman who turned Yara mer, will stop at nothing and sacrifice everything to protect his people-until he falls for Yara. The tides turn as Yara fights to save herself, hundreds of sea creatures, and the merman who has her heart. She could lose her soul in the process-or she might open the gateway to a love that’s deeper than the oceans.

 

The cover is pretty as mermaids go. It reminds me of that scene in the Little Mermaid where Ariel flipped her hair when she got out of the water as human. Anyway…

I had a bit of a problem with reading the ebook. Each chapter was told in the POV of either Yara, Treygan, or Rownan. While reading, the indicator would say, for example, Yara, but the continuing paragraphs are still on the previous person’s POV. I guess it was messed up from the conversion from PDF to epub. Fortunately, I had common sense and used it while reading.

It took me quite a while to finish reading this because of various reasons. I wanted to finish it in a day but life keeps getting in the way. I’d say it was a rough start, it was slow paced and took a lot of pages to get to the point. But as soon as some secrets were revealed, it got interesting. I became curious about merfolk and selkies, and even sirens.

Yara was annoying. Wait, no. She’s stubborn. I sometimes feel like she acts like a spoiled brat, which I guess makes her annoying at times. If she wants something, she wants it done right away. Treygan on the other hand, is a very patient merman, or is he just patient with Yara? He’s also carrying a lot of burden within himself. Yara doesn’t like him at first because she felt like he was responsible for what happened to her. I liked the constant bickering with between the two though. At some level I think it’s cute, I found myself smiling silly while reading those parts.

I don’t know how I feel about Rownan, he’s not that bad but he isn’t good either. He has his reasons for doing the things he did, and I think it’s understandable given the circumstances. And at some point he was concerned with Yara’s well-being. The other characters are likable, in my opinion, except for the other selkies like Jack.

The cross-breeding between monsters felt like a stretch, I was confused for a while, found myself stopping to recall who was half what and what it meant in relation with the whole story.

The C-weed and seagarette bit were witty in my opinion, but it felt ridiculous too. I mean, the purpose of those were understandable but the manner of usage, smoked like weed and tobacco was silly. There were even parts where a lighter was mentioned and a C-weed was smoked underwater, like how? While I try to recall that part, I don’t know if I misunderstood the description of their whereabouts or they really were underwater.

When most the information was revealed, it made sense. I was out of the loop just as Yara was most of the time, which was a good thing, it kept me guessing where the story was headed. There were also a lot of funny conversation between the characters. When I think about it, the lore and everything else, it’s quite genius. Do you know how hard it is to come up with a plot that makes sense and make ends meet? At least, to me, it made sense in the end. Even the references and Treygan’s naiveness with human terminologies felt real.

 

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32 Comments

  1. athena
    20 July, 2012

    i haven’t read this book yet, but i’ve always liked reading / watching stuff about mermaids though. i don’t mean to judge the book by its cover too, but the cover looks a bit weird to me. 😮

    Reply
  2. Mavin Reyes
    20 July, 2012

    interesting book, although i am not into mermaids

    Reply
  3. Franc Ramon
    21 July, 2012

    Seems an interesting read about mermaids.

    Reply
  4. Roj Braga
    20 July, 2012

    Interesting book! I’ve always like mythology.. Wonder when will I be able to grab a copy of this 🙂

    Reply
  5. love the books here in your site. perfect because early this morning i was scouting for some reliable book review blogs 😀

    Reply
  6. Sumi Go
    21 July, 2012

    I’ve never read anything about mermaids except for the Little Mermaid.. haha.. I’m not sure if I’ll be interested to read this, but the C-weed and seagarette parts sound funny.. ^^

    Reply
  7. sir rob
    20 July, 2012

    Just a first time reader out here so it would take me for awhile to say something great but so far so good.

    Reply
  8. Tess Torrecampo-Chancellor
    20 July, 2012

    I like mermaid story but it is best if i watch is on tv or movie. There is a tv show my son and I are watching ,titled H2O.

    Reply
  9. Pepper Tan
    21 July, 2012

    Sounds interesting. I haven’t read a good book in a while.

    Reply
  10. Itsberyllicious
    21 July, 2012

    the only mermaid story I’ve read about was the little mermaid.. but this seems to be a great read too! 🙂

    Reply
  11. nicklelove
    21 July, 2012

    Thanks Pauline! 🙂

    Reply
  12. nicklelove
    21 July, 2012

    We don’t have this in bookstores AFAIK. You can either get the ebook or purchase a physical copy from Amazon. 🙂

    Reply
  13. Jeffrey Rilles
    21 July, 2012

    interesting book. I love watching movies about mermaids and sea fantasies pero wla aq tiyaga magbasa ng books 🙂

    Reply
  14. Robi Marapao
    21 July, 2012

    I used to dream of seeing a real mermaid. I remember my childhood days. haha… It would certainly hook up mermaid fans. 🙂

    Reply
  15. mark pogi
    21 July, 2012

    The book seems to be interesting based on your reviews. The only mermaids I see was on TV and in the Carnival. XD

    Reply
  16. ralph
    21 July, 2012

    mermaids and romance… a good combination for a fairytale love story… i do have a short novel of my own in my blog, written by my ex-gf (LOL)… Queen Stephanie. hope you can find time to read and comment what you think of it… salamat. Yahweh bless.

    Reply
  17. Unsugarcoated Reviews
    21 July, 2012

    It has been ages since I last read a book about mermaids. Well it’s fantasy, so anything goes I guess 😀

    Reply
  18. Che Ramos
    21 July, 2012

    sound interesting. I find your honesty funny. you really showed your confusion on the story and brought it out in your review. great job!

    Reply
  19. Airra Pingol
    22 July, 2012

    Though im not usually a big fan of mermaid stories.. I find this one quite interesting 🙂

    Reply
  20. claire
    22 July, 2012

    Interesting! I’m not really fond of reading books but I am interested in mermaid stories. You caught my attention and might as well read this book

    http://www.clairerafols.com

    Reply
  21. Angie Vianzon
    22 July, 2012

    I’m a big fan of mermaid and actually dreamed of becoming one but I’m not sure if I ever want to read something related to them although I would love to watch them.

    Anyway, I still liked the story and hopefully I can let myself read stories about mermaid one time.

    Reply
  22. Swexie
    23 July, 2012

    I had Ariel in mind, too, when I saw that cover. Seagarette? I think t would be ridiculous underwater, but let’s just use our imagination. =)

    Reply
  23. Francis Balgos
    23 July, 2012

    Surprising that you gave four even after the mess up with POV..
    Must be a very interesting plot

    Reply
  24. ventocoseuss
    23 July, 2012

    This might be a hit with people, as the issue about mermaids are in the limelight. Haha.. Good story, fitting for a movie. 😀

    Reply
  25. Teresa Martinez
    23 July, 2012

    Reading and finishing a book is quite challenging for me at this time because of various obligations although I have always loved reading. I’ll definitely try to read this one as my curiosity was piqued by your review.

    Reply
  26. The Chef
    23 July, 2012

    hahaha.. i would love to try that seagarette hahaha.. I am not into this kind of reading but thanks for sharing.. a friend of mine would love this book though.. I will share it to him

    Reply
  27. nicklelove
    23 July, 2012

    The seagarette has a purpose for Selkies. I don’t think it’s the same as our cigarettes. LOL.

    Reply
  28. nicklelove
    23 July, 2012

    I gave it a 4 because I really liked the story. The formatting has no weigh in such decision. It was originally in PDF format, converted to epub, I guess that’s what messed it up. 😉

    Reply
  29. nicklelove
    23 July, 2012

    I could just imagine. That’s why I use as much of my free time in reading books because once I start working, I’ll have less time for them. 🙂

    Reply
  30. Karen
    23 July, 2012

    Well, aside from the Little Mermaid and Marina…i haven’t read a book or watched a television series about mermaid and other undersea creature. Tell me if Yara is just dreaming in the whole story.

    Reply
  31. Maria Gemma Defeo-Hilotin
    27 July, 2012

    I have yet to read a mermaid story… I prefer watching movies about it instead though! lol! I love how you made your review very personal.. makes us non-readers go with your emotions about the whole thing.

    Reply
  32. Franc Ramon
    11 August, 2012

    You really know how to hype books and is able to provide a good recap of the book.

    Reply

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