"To find out what a story's really about,' the Librarian said,

'you don't ask the writer. You ask the reader."

- SNOW & ROSE by Emily Winfield Martin

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Review: THE VICIOUS DEEP and THE SAVAGE BLUE (#2) by Zoraida Cordova (YA)

by Zoraida Cordova
Release date: May 1st, 2012
Published by: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: Young Adult (Mermaids)
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook
Format read: Hardcover I purchased.


For Tristan Hart, everything changes with one crashing wave. 

He was gone for three days. Sucked out to sea in a tidal wave and spit back ashore at Coney Island with no memory of what happened. Now his dreams are haunted by a terrifying silver mermaid with razor-sharp teeth. 

His best friend Layla is convinced something is wrong. But how can he explain he can sense emotion like never before? How can he explain he's heir to a kingdom he never knew existed? That he's suddenly a pawn in a battle as ancient as the gods. 

Something happened to him in those three days. 
He was claimed by the sea...
and now it wants him back.



This continues to be my all-time favorite mermaid story ever!
Actually, it's my favorite merman, underwater, oracles, kingdom book ever!
There is so much to the story, and the author's writing was/is amazing - giving enough details with a strong lead male and point-of-view and the underwater world building is amazing... 

Tristan is your typical teen boy who knows who he is and what he loves - he's captain of the swim team, popular in school and with the girls, haves a wonderful family, best friends and loves his home in Coney Island.
So what happens to the guy who has it all finds out that he's a mermaid? No, no - a merman???
He freaks out!... and then embraces it and just goes with the flow... literally and figuratively.
Oh, and then throw in that the grandfather he never knew nominates him as one of the champions to compete for the throne to be the Sea King - no problem, Tristan takes it all in and cracks a joke about it, because that is Tristan's defense mechanism to take the seriousness out of everything that is happening to him. His attitude his refreshing and realistic - where many people would panic, breakdown and cave into the fear of something so huge happening to them (he has a fishtail!), Tristan took it all in stride and accepted it, because he knew that no matter what he did, he couldn't change the pass and had to face his new future. Tristan, a bit egotistical, but downright loving and loyal, has such a fun attitude and an amusing but brilliant way about looking and dealing with things that he thought were impossible. I really, really enjoyed getting to know Tristan, his old and new friends and family.
Like I mentioned, Tristan is an average teen boy, there are some crude moments and thoughts, crass language and behavior, but the author did it well and did not go overboard - sorry to say, but boys will be boys, even when they're swimming around with a fishtail.

The love story is like no other, it's not the typical storyline where they're all lovey-dovey for each other, it's the love/hate kind where she, Layla, is just as strong-minded and opinionated as Tristan. She never backs down from him, or anyone else. Surprisingly she recovers from the shock of Tristan's news and handles everything pretty well. As well as any human can. I really liked Layla and look forward to seeing how their relationship will develop with everything that is going on, which will be very difficult to keep together.

The story is fast-paced, (which I love and always seem to fall upon), with realistic scenery and characters. All the details to the Sea Kings floating island, Toliss, to the color and texture to Tristan and his merfriends scales and tails, to other creatures living in the sea, and those that have been banished from the sea to live on land - all realistic, beautiful and imaginative. I would love to see this trilogy be turned into a movie in the future - a future that would have all of the technology to truly breathe life into all of this beauty that the author created. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the beginning of Tristan's journey as champion.
I hope to see more of this author's writing soon!!! 

The Vicious Deep #2
by Zoraida Cordova
Release date: May 7th, 2013
Published by: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: Young Adult (Mermaids)
Format: Hardback, Paperback, eBook
Format read: Hardcover I purchased. 


A storm is coming...

The ocean is a vicious place. Deeper and darker than Tristan could have imagined. Beneath its calm blue surface, an ancient battle is churning —and no one is safe.

In the quest for the Sea Throne, Tristan has already watched one good friend die. Now he must lead the rest on a dangerous voyage in search of the trident that will make him king. But while Tristan chases his destiny, the dark forces racing against him are getting stronger, and the sea witch of his nightmares is getting closer.

Battling sea dragons and savage creatures of the deep, Tristan needs his friends' support. But they each have their secrets, and a betrayal will force Tristan to choose between his crown and his best friend Layla — the only girl he's ever loved.


The author has done an amazing job with the continuation of the trilogy...
this time, she dives right into the plot of Tristan's journey without skipping any details and continuing with the fast-paced storyline with non-stop action... 

In the first book, Tristan has a lot to go through in this part of his journey - he learns all about his mermaid heritage, what being a champion is all about, history lessons galore and has made new friends, meets new family members, has made more allies and, of course, has made a handful of enemies too!
It was so interesting to see more unique characters and to get to know them and learn their histories - first we learn that everyone that lives in the sea has stories and hardly ever tells the whole truth, every answer is lyrical or vague, which makes it difficult for Tristan to trust and get the answers he needs to find the other two pieces to the trident. We meet four oracles, sisters who each have their own gifts and will only help if you help them first. We learn more about the crazy princesses and their magic, the landlocked (those that have been banished by the courts) and other mythical creatures - if mermaids exist, why can't vampires, werewolves and other unworldly creatures too? Tristan is hardly ever surprised anymore.
Tristan continues to entertain us with his sarcastic attitude, quick wit and determination. He did not ask for any of this to happen to him, or to anyone involved. But he knows that its something that he must do, and finish, whether he likes to or not. Even when those close to him betray him and he is left alone to his own devices. He steps up and does the best that he can, keeps true to himself and remains loyal to those who continue to support him. The relationships in this trilogy are strong and are major key points to the story. Without support, Tristan would have died many deaths a long time ago. And Tristan knows this, and will do whatever it takes to continue to do what is right for them and is never selfish nor does he ever back down to continue his, and their, fight.

Now, I have a confession - I am loving Nieve! Nieve, the silver mermaid, is beyond wicked and will go to great lengths to become the Queen of the Sea. She is ruthless and mean and knows exactly how to play with Tristan's mind and heart. However, in the beginning of the book, we get a glimpse to a much younger Nieve and my heart went out to her. The cruelty that was brought down on her did help in creating the crazed mermaid that we see now. There was no stopping what she would become and what she would do. However, I do hope that she doesn't succeed.

There's definitely a twist that I did not see coming! And a cliffhanger that left me on the edge of my seat... I need to get to book 3 asap!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Zoraida Cordova

Zoraida Córdova was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador. She made her way up north and now works in the glittering New York City nightlife. She likes shiny things like Christmas, merdudes, and the skyline at night. She loves making new friends.

Goodreads / Website/Blog / Twitter / Facebook 

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