Beautifully Submerged in Magic and Secrets | Review of ‘Submerge’ (Mer Chronicles #2)

By Cynthia Ayala

Submerge by Tobie Easton
Image Credit: Goodreads

“Now that Lia and Clay’s love has broken the Little Mermaid’s curse, everything has changed. Will Lia’s family remain on land, leading the only life she and her sisters have ever known, or will they move below the waves, to the sparkling new capital city? Lia is adamant about staying on land with Clay for her senior year. But at Melusine and her father’s trial, new revelations threaten what Lia holds most dear. The verdict will shake Lia’s whole world, calling into question her future with Clay, her feelings for Caspian, and the fate of all Merkind. As she wonders who to trust, Lia sets out on a treacherous path that will lead her away from her sheltered Malibu home to a remote and mysterious school for Mermaids—Mermaids who may hold the secret to ancient magic Lia can use to either get back all she’s lost or to embark on a thrilling and dangerous journey.”

Published September 12, 2017 by Month9Books Submerge by Tobie Easton is the second novel in her mermaid based fantasy series, the Mer Chronicles.

Submerge was an excellent way to continue this new series that develops the story of The Little Mermaid and the effect her actions had on her people. This series has gone so far beyond that and has taken on a whole new life all on its own, expanding from the “retelling” genre. This is a series that has such a powerful vibe to it that connects to the reader. The magic in the world is captivating because it is something firmly based on the culture of these characters that Easton has created. Emerge never delved into the world of the Mer, of the world of Lia’s ancestors, but now Submerge has, submerging the reader in the culture and politics. Easton has made such a strong effort to make sure her characters have not only a magical life but also a realistic one. There’s no way someone would be able to read this novel and not believe that this is the way that mermaids would live. Moreover, through Lia’s eyes, readers get to experience the awe of this world. Readers cannot forget that Lia was born on land, the ocean world, while it has always called to her, it is not her home the way it would be to her older sisters or cousins. This world, her peoples home is so foreign to her making it such an inspirational journey for her to go on. She is connecting to her culture, to her people in a more profound way than she ever has before. Not only that, but she is connecting to a deeper side of herself than she ever has, and it is incredible. The dynamics of the culture are so different for Lia, but they give the culture and the world a fantastic amount of depth (pun intended). It is complicated, these politics, but also richly diverse and captivating. Much of it is very, old rules and bylaws that these people still follow, highlighting just how different it is from what Lia knows. Her world has always been very progressive, but the Mer culture is not. This is a culture steeped deeply in history, holding tight to history and safety, somewhat guided by prejudice and fear. For Lia this is a whole new world that she seeks to understand and reconcile with what she knows is wrong and what she knows is right, hoping to change. However, everything she sees also makes her marvel.

Easton creates such a magical world here for her readers and through Lia give immense depth and history to he Mer culture. Additionally, with this dive into the Mer Lia experiences amazing character development. Lia has gone through the ringer in this book, but she uses that pain that she has to endure to make herself stronger, to make her magic stronger and challenge the rules, albeit secretly. Her magic is her hope, it is what makes her thrive, what makes her grow into an even more dynamic character because it connects her to hope, to change, to value the price of magic, challenging the right versus the wrong. To see Lia grow so strong and come into herself so much is incredible. Her power also changes the dynamics around her. Those who know her secret value her power, respect it, and those that don’t, they see the change in Lia, this independence, and hope that has lifted her from her sorrow. Her power is her inner strength that works to define her character, her lightness, making her shine off the pages. Her growth is incredible.

Submerge is a magical sequel to Emerge. It takes Lia and readers to a whole new realm of magic and intrigue. (★★★★☆ | A)

Product Details:

Pub Date: Sept. 12, 2017

Page count: 300pp

Age Range: 12 & Over

ISBN: 978-1-9451-0784-9

Publisher: Month9Books

List Price:  $23.99

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