Thursday, August 30, 2012

Fathomless by Jackson Pearce

Fathomless by Jackson Pearce
Release Date – September 4, 2012
Publisher Website –  Little Brown and Company
Publisher Social Media -  Twitter
Pages -  304 pages
My Rating- 3.5/5
**obtained from publisher via BEA for an honest review**


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Celia Reynolds is the youngest in a set of triplets and the one with the least valuable power. Anne can see the future, and Jane can see the present, but all Celia can see is the past. And the past seems so insignificant -- until Celia meets Lo. 
Lo doesn't know who she is. Or who she was. Once a human, she is now almost entirely a creature of the sea -- a nymph, an ocean girl, a mermaid -- all terms too pretty for the soulless monster she knows she's becoming. Lo clings to shreds of her former self, fighting to remember her past, even as she's tempted to embrace her dark immortality. 
When a handsome boy named Jude falls off a pier and into the ocean, Celia and Lo work together to rescue him from the waves. The two form a friendship, but soon they find themselves competing for Jude's affection. Lo wants more than that, though. According to the ocean girls, there's only one way for Lo to earn back her humanity. She must persuade a mortal to love her . . . and steal his soul.
The ocean hides many secrets, and many dangers. Dangers camouflaged in beautiful packaging.

This novel blends the previous fairytales in this series with mermaids. We learn in Sweetly that young girls are taken by the wolves and turned into mere-creatures. This Little Mermaid retelling is dark like the original and keeps many similar themes.  The mermaids must get a mortal to love her and drown them to steal their soul. It’s the only way to regain the humanity and leave the ocean behind.

The underwater chapters were moody, creepy and yet strangely beautiful. They had a haunting quality to them and I enjoyed them the most. From the descriptions of excruciating pain when Lo walked on land, to the mermaids ability to drown someone, the mermaid components of the story chilled me. Their singular mind set and viewing themselves as a group rather than individuals added to this. It felt a little like a cult.

Some of these mermaids are desperate, and that makes them dangerous. Many of them do not remember their real names, or the lives they left behind. The ones that do remember are the most desperate of all, and even more dangerous. I thought these girls who have had everything taken from them were quite sympathetic. You can understand their motivations, even if you don’t agree with them.

The relationships in the novel were well developed. I felt I could relate to the relationship the three sisters had. They had moments of such loyalty to each other and yet were capable of hurting each other deeply. Their teasing and banter was also wonderful. They are very protective of each other. The romance between Jude and Celia was another highlight.  It was quite sweet and did not develop too quickly. They each had normal apprehensions about the other, especially given how they met. The friendship that develops between Lo and Celia was touching. Born out of each of them getting something they need from the other, a genuine friendship quickly forms.

Like in previous books in this series, I had a harder time connecting with the characters. I, however, liked a lot of these characters much more than the ones in the previous novels. Lo was the one character that really stood out. She was complex, and intriguing. Her fighting to remember who she really is, and the desire to forget. Temptation to give in is there, and she is fighting natural instincts every time she gets out of the water. The excruciating pain she feels in order to keep what is essentially her sanity made her sympathetic.

My only issue is that so much is left open ended. The ending, while unexpected, was less than satisfying for me. for a fourth book to pull all three together in a way that hasn’t happened yet.  Darkly chilling, and desperate mermaids saved this story, and made it a fine addition to the trilogy.


  1. Great review! I'm a big fan of Jackson Pearce, so hopefully I will love this book also.

  2. I 'still' haven't had a chance to start the Sisters Red books, but I SOOOOOOOO want to! Her books sound great, especially this one! I must get on it soon. :)

    Awesome review, Kathy! I'm excited now. :)

  3. I really want to read the Jackson Pearce books, everyone has been talking about them and they sound so interesting, but I'm wary of the fairy tale retelling. I'm sad to hear that the characters are hard to connect with in these stories, but I am interested to see what Pearce does. Great review!


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