BOOK REVIEW: Ocean Heart by Ally Aldridge #Mermaids #YoungAdult

Being a mermaid brings a new depth to ‘it’s complicated.’

High school teen Mariah’s life is anything but simple. Between a crush on her best friend and a rivalry brewing with the swim team star, her powers awaken early.

When Mariah’s guardian meddles in her life with magic, she causes more harm than good. The soul reapers are coming and there’s a werewolf hungry for merblood. All secrets wash ashore sooner or later, and Mariah’s about to discover hers.

Mixing a messy love life with deadly powers will whip up a storm of trouble. Can Mariah contain it or will she be swept up in its wake?

A gripping story about a mermaid, self acceptance, and romance that literally sparks.

*****

Please note the MC is 15 years old, there is a love triangle, and sweet romance scenes (no sex).

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MY REVIEW

3.5 stars

Mermaid books are few and far between, so I was eager to read this one. Toss in some drama and romance, and it made for a good read.

This would have been a four or five-star book for me, but there were areas that were glossed over or just left unfinished. Too many things were thrown in for seemingly no reason. The beginning was a bit slow for me, and I struggled to really dig into the story, but by around chapter three, I didn’t want to put it down. The romance threaded into the story was well done and had me turning the pages. I’m a romantic at heart and couldn’t wait to see what happened. Would Mariah end up with Murray or Jace?

The secondary characters kept things interesting, even if there were parts I felt were needlessly added, particularly where Mariah’s “mum” was concerned and Jace’s mother. We see quite a bit of Murray’s sister, but part of her storyline seemed to have come out of nowhere and was left unresolved. Much like the soul reapers who are mentioned and supposedly feared, and yet they take up very little of the story and are almost an afterthought by the end. A surprise character, related to Mariah, makes an appearance but her role in the book seems almost forced. I think if the author had focused more on Mariah, Jace, and Murray, and threw in fewer random bits of drama, it would have streamlined the story more.

Overall, it was an enjoyable read. I really hope we’ll get to see more of these characters in future stories. I won’t spoil the book and tell you who Mariah ends up with, but their romance was both sweet and fiery. What’s not to love about fated mates?

*Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book and the review above is only my opinion.

Desire Me Again (Multi-author Collection) #paranormalromance #anthology @alicerauthor

The hopeless romantic believes that a soulmate exists for each of us. That there is one person who makes us feel how good it is to love them. For some couples, things trigger them to push that love away. They find out too late they’ve lost true-love. Sometimes genuine love deserves a second-chance at the happy ending that eluded them the first time.

Desire Me Again is an eclectic assortment of short stories exploring a second-chance at love. The collection is as diverse as the authors who wrote them. Here’s a chance to read the work of talented writers you may not have read before. Within these pages, there are blends of tender, often moving and thought-provoking stories.

Book Description for The Holiday Mermaid

The Holiday Mermaid, a seasonal fantasy romance by Alice Renaud: Adam fell for surfer girl Rowena the second he saw her. But just as their summer fling was becoming serious, she left him without any explanation. Now, with Christmas just a few days away, she’s back… and Adam discovers that she’s a shape-shifting mermaid, from a Clan that hates humans. Can he love her as she is? Can she brave her family to be with Adam for good, not just for Christmas?

Buy Links

https://amzn.to/34NstC7

Excerpt 

The salty wind hit Adam in the face as soon as he stepped outside. The rain had paused its relentless hammering, but the iron-grey sky lay low on the deserted beach.

Not quite deserted. A woman was sitting on her own by the sea. Adam strained to see through the mist and spray.  She wore a dark wetsuit, and her long black hair streamed in the wind like a banner. A surfer? But who was mad enough to surf at this time of year?

She wasn’t moving. A tendril of concern snaked into his mind. What if she were injured? She’d get hypothermia if she remained sitting there. He’d better go check on her.

He walked out of his garden and down the stone steps that led to the beach. “Hi there! Are you OK?” he called.

She turned her head. It was Rowena.

Shock hit Adam like a ten foot wave. He stopped, winded. For months he’d prayed that she’d come back. Now that she had, he didn’t know what to think or feel. He stumbled towards her as if he were in a dream, or a nightmare. Why was she here? Had she been on her way to see him, and lost her nerve? Hope and fear played tug-of-war in his chest. Had she only returned to say goodbye?

Rowena turned away and hung her head down, as if ashamed to look at him. Perhaps she had come back to apologise for her behaviour. His sternum ached with the effort of containing his emotions. He forced himself to sound calm and polite. “Hi, Rowena.”

She didn’t answer, only hunched her shoulders even more, as if trying to hide. Was she afraid of him? No matter what she’d done, he’d never hurt her. He gulped some air and came closer. Damn it, he was an adult. He should be able to have a civilised conversation with an ex-girlfriend.

Her neck was so white and slender under the tangled black hair. Adam’s palms itched, as if they yearned for the feel of her satiny skin. The wetsuit clung to her every curve. His gaze glided down her back, to her bottom… the bottom he’d loved to squeeze, nip and kiss…

But a black appendage now lay over the cleft of her buttocks. A foot-long, flexible appendage… What a strange thing to have on a wetsuit. 

Adam gasped as the realization dawned. Astonishment wiped out all other emotions. “Is that a… tail?” She couldn’t have grown a tail. This was demented.

Rowena made a strangled sound, like a sob. She was hugging herself, and now Adam saw what he should have seen earlier. He’d been distracted by his feelings, and he hadn’t believed what his eyes were telling him. What he’d thought was a wetsuit was her own skin, thick, glossy and black, like a porpoise. From the neck up she was human, but below she was… He walked around her and stared, numb with shock, at her long black legs that ended in webbed feet. Her hands, clutching her smooth black sides, were webbed too.

Rowena glanced up at him, her eyes full of anguish. “Yes. I am a mermaid.”

About the Author

Alice lives in London, UK, with her husband and son. By day she’s a compliance manager for a pharmaceutical company. By night she writes fantasy romance about shape shifting mermen, water monsters and time-travelling witches. Her first book, “A Merman’s Choice,” was published in January 2019 by Black Velvet Seductions. It is the first book in a fantasy romance trilogy inspired by the landscapes and legends of Brittany and Wales. The second book, “Music for a Merman,” is out now and the third, “Mermaids Marry in Green” is on pre order now and will be released on 1 November 2020. Alice has also written short stories: “The Sweetest Magic of All,” included in the BVS “Mystic Desire” anthology, out now, and “The Holiday Mermaid” in the BVS “second chance at love” anthology “Desire Me Again”, out in October 2020. Alice loves reading and writing stories, and sharing them with anyone who’s interested!

Author Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AliceRenaudAuthorRomance/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/alicerauthor

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/alice-renaud-author-4219b6166/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/alicerenaudauthor/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18670218.Alice_Renaud

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/alice-renaud

Amazon page: https://www.amazon.com/Alice-Renaud/e/B07L52P17B

Website: https://nomadauthors.com/alicerenaud/alicebooks.html

Spotlight: Sin Seduction boxed set #PNR #BDSM #shifters

Meet your next book boyfriend in this sexy box set!

sin_3

Sin & Seduction: A Limited Edition Spicy Paranormal & Contemporary Romance Collection

Amazon Smart URL: http://hyperurl.co/SinZ

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2yHxc9S

Featuring New York Times, USA Today, and International bestselling authors, Sin & Seduction is a spicy, diverse collection of paranormal & contemporary, hetero & same sex romance reads designed to ignite fires of passion, love, and romance.

Bursting with sexy-as-sin heroes & devilish heroines, our titillating & romantic tales will seduce you and leave you craving more. Get ready for a passionate and exhilarating ride!

Warning: The Sin & Seduction authors suggest all readers ensure snacks and cool drinks are obtained before starting this collection. Once you start, you won’t want to stop until the last page. Please read responsibly.

#spicyromreads #spicyrom #sincollection #contemporaryromance #paranormalromance #steamy #secondchance #shifter #magic #BDSM #bbw #mermaids #firefighters #danger #fatedmates