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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Book Review: Emerge by Tobie Easton

Emerge (Mer Chronicles #1) by Tobie Easton
Genre: Young Adult (Fantasy Romance)
Date Published: April 19, 2016
Publisher: Month9Books, LLC

Lia Nautilus may be a Mermaid but she’s never lived in the ocean. Ever since the infamous Little Mermaid unleashed a curse that stripped Mer of their immortality, war has ravaged the Seven Seas. Now Lia lives in a secret community of land-dwelling Mer hidden among Malibu’s seaside mansions and attends high school with humans. To protect everyone around her, she must limit her contact with non-Mer. No exceptions. But when the new girl sets her sights on Lia's crush, she will risk exposing her deadly secret to stop Clay from falling in love with the wrong girl. 

Emerge is the first book in the Mer Chronicles series by Tobie Easton. I'm in love with this world already. Lia is a descendant of the Little Mermaid. I'm not talking about the Disney little Mermaid either. Hans Christian Anderson got it closer to the truth according to these mermaids. Plus, the author added her own touches on the story that really brought it to life and gave it depth. For example, the story on how they got legs, the curse, and details on the "real" Little Mermaid. Their world intrigues me. Was it predictable? Yeah.. maybe at times. But, it was fun, and I really enjoyed it. The characters were lovable. There was humor, drama, suspense, and of course some romance. Speaking of romance, What about Caspian? I like Clay and all. So, I'm not throwing him to the sharks, but I felt like there was some chemistry with Caspian as well. Is it just me? I hope he gets his happily ever after. I'm pumped to get started on the second book. In fact, I'm going to read it now!

Emerge by Tobie Easton was kindly provided to me by Chapter by Chapter Blog Tours for review. The opinions are my own.

Chapter 1
I can’t swim. No matter how sparkly and tempting that water is. No matter how it glistens in the sunlight, ripples in the California breeze, or reflects the swaying palm trees. One quick dip and my legs will go poof.
      Besides, I’m late for P.E. Again.
      I run past the swimming pool and heave open the glass doors to the auditorium. I can’t keep relying on the twins to get me to school on time. I’ve got to learn to drive, but I need better control of my legs first. What dope thought giving a car foot controls was a good idea?
      All my classmates turn to stare, already in gym clothes. We finished volleyball last week—thank the tides!—so today we’re starting a new unit. About half the class wears P.E. shorts and t-shirts and stands near the entrance to the yoga studio. The other half mill around in bathing suits. So lucky.
      I scan the room for the coach. If she’s not here yet, I can pop into the locker room and be in yoga before she knows I’m tardy. I rush toward the changing rooms, salvation in sight, when out marches a woman whose long blond hair is at odds with her bulging muscles.Coach Crane. She was a professional wrestler on one of those gladiator shows in the eighties, and her biceps are bigger than my head. She stops in front of me, her massive frame towering over mine.
      “So nice of you to show up.” A drop of her spittle lands on my cheek, and I scrunch my nose, unable to wipe it off without her noticing.
      “I’m super sorry. My sisters—”
      “Hurry up and change,” she says, stalking past me. Phew!Maybe this day won’t be a total shipwreck after all. Then she adds, “Put on your bathing suit. You’ll be in swim class today.”
      I spin around.
      “What? I’m signed up for y-yoga, not swimming,” I say. Stay calm.
      “Yoga’s full up. You have a swimsuit, don’t you? It’s on your list of required materials.”
      I have a swimsuit in my locker, but it’s for show. No matter what happens, I can’t get into that pool. Sure, I can maintain my legs all day on land, but as soon as I hit the water, my natural instincts will take over. My tail will emerge, scales and all, and I’ll expose my whole family. I’ll put the entire Community of land-dwelling Mer refugees at risk. My breath comes in quick, shallow pants.
      “My mom filed a note in the office,” I say, clinging to the story my parents concocted for such an emergency. “I’m taking private swimming lessons with this coach my parents hired and I’m not supposed to have any outside instruction.”
      Rather than help me, this story makes Coach Crane’s nostrils flare. “I haven’t seen any note, so today you’re swimming. Now go change. I’m not going to tell you again.”
      “No.” Did I just say that? Hands cup over mouths as the room erupts in whispers. No one gets why I’m making a fuss. I wish Caspian were here. What I wouldn’t give for one other Mer who’d understand. “I’m not swimming.”
      I’ve never disobeyed a teacher before. But as much as Coach Crane scares me, that water scares me more. If I swim in the pool, the next place I’ll be swimming is a government laboratory tank, being poked and prodded and then chopped into sushi-sized pieces.“Please. My parents’ll kill me. And I just got over the flu,” I lie, floundering for a good excuse.
      “Listen up … ” the coach sticks one meaty finger in my face.Panic seizes me, and my legs tremble. My control over them is slipping. At this rate, I won’t even need to get in the water to reveal myself. If I lose my focus, I’ll be flat on my fins.
      “Coach Crane?” One of the guys steps forward from the group of yoga students. Clay. His dark hair shines under the fluorescent lights as he shoots me a reassuring smile. “She can take my spot in yoga. I have swim trunks.”
      “Clay, that’s not necessary. She needs to—”
      “I’d rather go swimming.” He cuts the coach off, determination in his hazel eyes.
      Twenty pairs of restless feet tap against the rubber floor. I’m holding everyone up. Then a sweet, chirpy voice pipes up from the throng by the doors. “At this rate, none of us will get to do anything.Can’t Lia and Clay just switch already?” It’s Kelsey, my closest human friend. She twists one of her corkscrew curls around her finger and stares blatantly at the clock.
      Coach Crane looks from the clock ticking away on the wall to me to Clay and back to me. “Fine. Ericson,” she motions to Clay, “go get into your trunks. And you,” she pins me with a fierce glare, “go change into your gym uniform. You’d better be in that studio doing downward dog in less than five minutes.”

Ready for the next books?

Tobie Easton was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, where she’s grown from a little girl who dreamed about magic to a twenty-something who writes about it. A summa cum laude graduate of the University of Southern California, Tobie hosts book clubs for tweens and teens. She and her very kissable husband enjoy traveling the globe and fostering packs of rescue puppies.

To learn more about Tobie Easton and her books, visit her website.You can also find her on Goodreads, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

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