Book Reviews, YA book reviews

The Mermaid by Christina Henry



My Rating ~ Three stars

3-gold-stars copy 2

RELEASED: 19 June 2018

Publisher: Titan Publishing

Format: Paperback

Pages: 321


From the author of Lost Boy comes a beautiful historical fairy tale about a mermaid who leaves the sea, only to become the star attraction of history’s greatest showman. Once there was a mermaid called Amelia who could never be content in the sea, a mermaid who longed to know all the world and all its wonders, and so she came to live on land. Once there was a man called P. T. Barnum, a man who longed to make his fortune by selling the wondrous and miraculous, and there is nothing more miraculous than a real mermaid. Amelia agrees to play the mermaid for Barnum and walk among men in their world, believing she can leave anytime she likes. But Barnum has never given up a money-making scheme in his life, and he’s determined to hold on to his mermaid.




Amelia is a mermaid who has always longed to walk on the land.  When she is caught in the net of a fisherman, who then lets her go, she returns to him to live among the humans.  Due to circulating rumours about her mermaid origins, P.T. Barnum sends his friend Levi to convince her to star as an attraction in his museum.  Amelia wants to see the world, so she agrees to join them, but the job might be more than she bargained for.

I loved Lost Boy so so much, it is one of my all time favourite books, so I was super excited to read this book.  But, although it was fine, it was just that – ok.  I enjoyed reading it, but I just didn’t end up caring enough about the characters or liking any of them all that much, except for Amelia herself.  I was used to the shocking revelations and anger producing villains of Christina’s other books (Alice and Red Queen as well as Lost Boy) and I just didn’t get any of those strong feelings from The Mermaid.   Maybe those expectations tarnished my experience of the book.  I did love Amelia’s character.  She was brave and stood up for herself in a world where no other women did.  I enjoyed the way she was not depicted as a typical looking mermaid we have all come to expect from traditional mermaid stories, and the fact that she was not at all apologetic about it.

I find it so difficult to review books I’m a bit “meh” about.  Ones I love or hate are easy to write passionately about, but I struggle with the ones that leave me without any real lasting impressions.  The ones that leave me thinking “Ok, nice story, moving on to the next book”.  I honestly wish I had loved The Mermaid more, but unfortunately, although I liked it, it just wasn’t all that memorable for me.




The Mermaid photo by

Photo via my Instagram account – Bookbookowl



6 thoughts on “The Mermaid by Christina Henry”

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