The Lonely Merman
Author: Kay Berrisford
Title: The Lonely Merman
Series: Landlocked Heart
Rating: Three Petals
On the Author's Website:
It's Friday afternoon, and the last thing Ben wants to be doing is trudging through a wet forest in search of a public hazard. But duty calls, and turns out more exciting than Ben imagined when he encounters a magical ruin, an enchanted pool, and Lyle—a merman who's cursed to be landlocked many miles from the sea.
Lyle is flamboyant and exciting—he's got tentacles, for goodness sake!—and Ben falls hard. But Lyle's been hurt before and finds trust difficult, refusing even to reveal how to break the curse that imprisons him. Ben's just an ordinary guy, and can't help wondering if he can ever be the hero Lyle needs.
I received this book as an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
When Ben stumbles upon Lyle in the woods, Ben doesn't know what to think. He's repulsed by the creepy guy in an oversized cloak, yet at the same time he can't help being intrigued. They keep meeting more and more until intrigue becomes love, but love might not be enough to save Lyle, who is dying from a curse every day he remains trapped in the woods.
This was a very cute story. I liked the balance of Ben's conservationist need to inspect the tower and lake where Lyle lives and his need to understand and then protect Lyle. The magic involved was interesting too. Lyle's curse and the magic he uses to keep himself safe was very interesting to read about and was definitely the best part of this story.
What I didn't like was all the time skips and the moments when a character explained what happened five minutes ago instead of Berrisford taking the time to write out the full scene. It made the story feel choppy and rushed. What could have been a very interesting love story lacked the proper build-up because of those missing scenes, which unfortunately made a lot of the plot feel unnecessary. By the time I got to the end I was ready for the story to end.
Overall I did enjoy reading this story, which is why I do recommend it. It was cute with interesting characters and well written magic. However, the story itself felt rushed and choppy thanks to a lot of time skips and the characters explaining instead of showing.
Maggie reviews paranormal and fantasy novels and novellas. She also interviews authors and hosts giveaways.