Friday, May 02, 2014 10:27

Review 256. Jennifer Donnelly – Deep blue.

18601430Title: Deep blue.
Author: Jennifer Donnelly.
Pages: 320.
Published: May 6th 2014 by Disney Press.
Sort: Waterfire saga #1.
Source: Netgalley & Publisher.
Deep in the ocean, in a world not so different from our own, live the merpeople. Their communities are spread throughout the oceans, seas, and freshwaters all over the globe. When Serafina, a mermaid of the Mediterranean Sea, awakens on the morning of her betrothal, her biggest worry should be winning the love of handsome Prince Mahdi. And yet Sera finds herself haunted by strange dreams that foretell the return of an ancient evil. Her dark premonitions are confirmed when an assassin's arrow poisons Sera's mother. Now, Serafina must embark on a quest to find the assassin's master and prevent a war between the Mer nations. Led only by her shadowy dreams, Sera searches for five other mermaid heroines who are scattered across the six seas. Together, they will form an unbreakable bond of sisterhood and uncover a conspiracy that threatens their world's very existence.
Rating:

Hello pretty cover, hello interesting blurb: you got me fooled again. This book left me bored and disconnected with any of the characters. It was very disappointing.

Serafina is the daughter of Queen of Miromara. She must perform a Songspell to prove she will be the next Queen. But of course things don’t go according to plan; her mother is hit by a poisoned arrow and Serafine must flee with her best friend whose name I already forgot. They run, get captured, are saved, run some more, bladiebla. The purpose of this book was in the end that Serafine is one of the six to stop a monster from breaking loose into their world.
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The main problem was my disconnection with the story and therefore the characters. We are thrown right into the story, which doesn’t have to be a problem, but the author is trying TOO hard to create an unique world. I was drowning in a sea of confusion by all the details and information. Instead of being wrapped into the story, I couldn’t give a single fuck (sorry for the language.) I wish she used all those names, places, food and whatever she was talking about, with more care. It could have turned out into a good world-building, but I ended up skipping everything hoping for the plot to kick in.

Serafina is like the story, boring. She isn’t such a bad character, but there was nothing special about her and I didn’t care about her fate. She is also in constant need of guidance and support; I expected her to have more strength. Her best friend was more interesting, but apparently not memorable because I seriously can’t remember her name.. Prince Mahdi was hardly mentioned in the book, but the things I saw about him disappoint me. What I did like was the fact that there is no romance in this book. I was already waiting for insta-love or a love-triangle, but there is none. Serafina is actually quite smart when it comes to protecting her heart and she is realistic in her feelings for Mahdi.

Throughout the story I was hoping for action or spectacular magic. The middle part wasn’t exciting at all. It became more interesting when Serafina and the six girls arrive at the witches, but that is where the book comes to an ending. It almost feels like this book is a prequel or a step-up for the true story.
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Mel@thedailyprophecy

Mel is a microbiology technician who is obsessed with Disney, fairytale retellings and fantasy. If she's not reading or blogging, she's either busy with gaming, hanging out with family or watching a TV show. She loves summer and bright nail polish. One of her dreams is to travel the world. She has found her Prince Charming and they are together for 7+ years.

39 comments:

  1. I am SUPER glad I didn't request this book on Netgalley. I was initially interested because woohoo! mermaids! but I'm glad I listened to that small voice in my head warning me that this was probably one of those books I'll hate. Reading this review now I'm glad I controlled the eager beaver in me. It sounds absolutely horrifying! I hate it when authors overkill with their details. I like a detailed world but please don't push it. Let it come naturally! Don't force or try too hard to make it too vivid because it becomes a one big blur later on. And the main character sounds weak-willed to me. I want a strong, independent character. It would be hard for me to swallow she's one of the chosen ones if she can't even stand on her own two feet!

    Faye at The Social Potato Reviews

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    1. I was also afraid. Mermaid books seem to disappoint me often. The overkill was just such a waste of the promise :(

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  2. Awww Man! I was really intrigued when I read about this book. I mean, Mermaids, I've never read anything with Mermaids before. But I knew it was either gonna be hit or miss. Either Really Great or Epic Fail.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your review! I think I'll be skipping this one. lol
    Have a sweet weekend & Happy Reading xoxo
    Michelle @ Book Hangovers

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    1. I loved the concept too! Thanks, I hope you have a great week :)

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  3. Oh I was thinking about picking this up, but maybe not. With such a great concept, it's too bad it turned out so mediocre! The characters sound really disappointing, and I hate when world-building = info-dump! BTW thumbs up for incorporating "drowning in a sea"! That made me laugh! :)

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    1. Haha, I just had to put that sentence in my review.

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  4. Well that's unfortunate. I think the best part about this book is that it prompted you to include a Jim GIF :)

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  5. Okay I was super intrigued by this one but I reallyyyy wasn't sure it was my thing so I've been stalking reviews and I'm learning it's def not for me! So sad! Thanks for your honest thoughts!

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  6. *Sighs* Aww...sorry you didn't enjoy this as much as you wanted to Melanie! :( Honestly, most mermaid books are either plain old "meh" or just downright horrible. At least this one wasn't horrible though! But, yeah, most of the reviews I've been reading have been pretty much saying the same thing - world-building through info-dump, and not fully connectable characters.

    Anyway, I think I'm going to give this one a miss as I think everything you've stated her would bother me as well. Thanks for sharing and, as always, BEAUTIFUL review! <3

    ~ Zoe @ The Infinite To-Read Shelf

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  7. Another mermaid story bites the dust. Why do authors keep on missing the mark with these books? If the character is someone we don't care about, then we won't care about the rest of the plot as well. Thank you Mel for your honest review.

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

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    1. I have no idea.. I guess sometimes they try TOO hard and that leads to thinks like info-dump.

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  8. I always tell myself to read more mermaid stories. I was never particularly interested in this one, since I'm not a fan of the cover or the synopsis, but I've been seeing it around a lot so I wanted to read it. Anyhow, it looks seriously boring. I bet it's one of those books where absolutely nothing happens in the first 90% of haha. I love myself some amazing world building, but it gets so boring when it's overdone. :( Lovely review, Mel!

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    1. Unfortunately, that is spot on. Most of the things happen towards the ending and that wasn't enough.

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  9. Meh. What a suckerpunch! :O This book actually looks so intriguing, I'm sorry it turned out to be such a bore :( I was interested in checking this one out too, but maybe now I'll put it at the bottom of my TBR list! :P But maybe if it does pick up in the end, it looks like it may promise something better for the sequel, so maybe you should check it out! :D
    Lovely review, Mel!! :D <33

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  10. I can definitely see why this one didn't work for you :| I felt like I was drowing with info dumps as well but I guess after a while it does get easier. I liked this a little more than you did.

    Lovely review, hun! <33

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  11. I had heard a review before saying that she loved the world-building. Like, she enjoyed all the new dialects and the information given about how the underwater world was. I guess it didn't work out with you. I was actually a little interested in this one but I guess I better think twice now. At least there's some hope for the sequel.

    How was the whole mermaid concept handled though? I personally have never read a single mermaid book, unless you would count The Little Mermaid. The only mermaid YA I've ever seen was something called Fins are Forever, and the title sounded so cheesy I didn't even get interested in that one. But I do wonder how such a subject that requires a lot of world-building and details be executed properly to make the reader believe that the protagonist is a mermaid.

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    1. I think it really depends on personal taste. For me, it was a bit too much. I liked that the author tried to create this world with all these unique features, but she didn't handle it well enough for me :)

      It's subtle. Sometimes you are reminded that she is a mermaid, but it's not overly used. Like, she would 'swim away'

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  12. Aw. I'm so sorry you didn't like this book sweetie. I have seen others not liking it as well :\ Can't decide if I wish to give it a try. Sigh. But maybe :D But yeah. It sucks when a book is boring :\ Thank you for sharing, though. <3 :)

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    1. Well, there is at least no love-triangle and I know how much you hate those :p

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  13. It's such a shame to hear that you didn't enjoy the book, I've heard mix things about it and can't decide if I want to give it a chance. I've never read a book about Mermaids before though :) Thank you for sharing your thoughts, hope you're having a great weekend :) xx

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  14. I'm sorry that this book didn't work out for you Melanie, characters that don't leave lasting impressions with you are the worst! I think I think most of the reviews I've read for this book haven't been that praising so far, which is a real shame! Thanks for the honest review and I hope your next book is more enjoyable!

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  15. Ah.... this one... I've unfortunately also heard of the "merlfriends" and the pet octopus... It's a shame that this disappointed you as well Mel :( I hate it too when a book just dumps so many characters and unique terminology on you; it really gives an opposite effect than what the author is aiming for. I feel like the YA world is missing good mermaid books. I can't seem to recall off the top of my head, but have you read Monstrous Beauty? <---GOOD. REALLY GOOD. Nevertheless, really fair review and hope your next read is better <3 Vivian

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    1. The pet octopus was kinda cute, haha. No,I haven't read that one, but it has been on my radar for a while now. I will put it higher on my list now!

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  16. I am still reading thru this one but I am having a bit of a disconnect as well.

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  17. Oh, I'm sorry this worked out so poorly for you, Mel! It's very frustrating when that happens, and it does sound, from the synopsis, like it has a heap of potential. If I had gone into it without reading any reviews first, I think I would have been quite taken aback.

    If you do end up reading the sequel, I hope it ends up outshining this by far! xx

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  18. It's too bad that this one is disappointing. Serafina definitely sounds like a pretty mediocre character, but I'm glad that the action at least picks up towards the end of the novel. I'm not sure if I'll be reading this one or not. I think I may still give it a try! Thanks for the great, honest review :)

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  19. Ooh, I know exactly what you mean! I liked it a bit better and was able to at least mostly be engaged in the story, but a lot of the plot is really repetitive and all a lead up simply for the ending. The information is very much dumped, and I found all of the puns kind of stupid. I think I'll read the second book to give this series another chance, because it really is an interesting idea. :) Great review!

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    1. Agreed. The concept is great, but the execution lacks. I hope the story picks up in the sequel :)

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  20. I've seen a lot of negative reviews for this one and yours is no exception. I saw complaints about the world-building and the words the author used and boy, it must be confusing and very annoying judging by what you said.
    I am surprised that there's no romance in this one; it's just expected. :P

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    1. True! It was great that the romance was left out. If there would be insta-love or a love-triangle, I don't think I would have finished it.

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  21. Aw how sad! I have really enjoyed some of her past books so I wanted to read this one. I'm sorry the book didn't work out for you.

    Thanks for the great review!

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  22. Booo, disconnection does not bode well for me. Blythe liked this one a lot, but I'm really afraid I'm going to be in the two star realm too, so I keep subtly pushing this one back on my pile. :(

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  23. Now I cannot get with a book that is boring. I'm sorry you didn't have much luck with this one!

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  24. So this is the second not so good review I have read from some bloggers I really trust. A boring book is not on the top of my to do list at the moment, thanks for the review!

    Ashley @ The Quiet Concert

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    1. Good decision, there are far better books out there!

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  25. I felt similar about this one. I was a smidgen more entertained but I was so disappointed that I wasn't able to connect to any of the characters. I felt the same about the world...just too many info dumps. I was never able to actually visualize the world. I'll try the sequel too with the exact same hope.

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  26. No romance? Wow. That's always a welcome and refreshing change of pace in YA, but it's a shame the story wasn't better. The last book I read about mermaids was September Girls, and that was underwhelming, to say the least. It didn't make me want to go out and get this one, and it looks like I'm not missing out.

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