The Siren and the Deep Blue Sea
For a novel featuring a romance that has been hyped up over four other books, The Siren and the Deep Blue Sea was a big letdown.
The last in a series about the Embraced, people born with special abilities, this story follows Maeve and Brody as they continue the fight against the villainous Circle of Five.
Maeve grew up as an orphan in a convent with her four older, adopted sisters. She can transform herself into a seal, making her a selkie, and has also realized that she has visions. With her sisters now all married with children, Maeve feels out of place and that her sisters treat her as if she is still a child. No one seems concerned that Brody has not checked in for a significant amount of time, so Maeve decides it’s up to her to find him. Along the way, she has visions that lead her back to the convent and then to meet the Seer, the man that prophesied peace for all.
After another vision in which Maeve calls a woman “mother”, she sets off for a long-forgotten island to meet that woman. It turns out Maeve is a princess and her mother the queen of an ancient people. Shortly thereafter, Brody – who has recently discovered his ability to shapeshift into other humans – arrives disguised as the Seer and he and Maeve must devise a plan to defeat the Chameleon and the Circle of Five.
The problem with teasing a relationship through four previous novels is that it’s easy for that relationship to let readers down. And that is exactly what happens here. Brody and Maeve’s romance just could not live up to the hype. The biggest issue I had with it was the fact they really do not spend all that much time together until around the halfway point of the book. Each is off on their own missions to defeat the villains and they only meet up again later on. While I liked Brody in the rest of the books, in this one he turned into one of those heroes who knows better than the heroine what she wants or needs. Everything kept circling back to how he can’t be with Maeve because he can’t be in human form for more than two hours a day, and even when Maeve assured him she didn’t care what form he came to her in, he continued with his refusal to be in a relationship with her. In the meantime, a romantic subplot romance between two other characters takes place but is NOT the same.
One of the most important things about a villain is their motivations to do the things they do, and the motivations for one of the baddies was so utterly ridiculous I rolled my eyes every time it was mentioned. Murdering someone because they are more attractive than you may have worked in a certain 1937 Disney film but is just annoying in 2020. Again, it was disappointing to have this buildup for the big bad – and then they really were not that bad at all. Just incredibly vain.
One thing Kerrelyn Sparks has always excelled at is worldbuilding throughout a series, and she does a great job building a world in this one. But while that was about the only redeeming quality of this title, it wasn’t enough. The problems with the romance and the idiotic villains were just too much to keep me from enjoying The Siren and the Deep Blue Sea.