Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly

Waterfire Saga, Book 1

Synopsis: The first in a series of four epic tales set in the depths of the ocean, where six mermaids seek to protect and save their hidden world.

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.

Review: As soon as I saw the cover of the novel, I knew that I had to read it. Yes, because this cover is just sublime! I completely fell in love with the work that the artist was able to achieve. Then, I must also add that I’m always really intrigued when an author presents a story about mermaids. I find it fascinating to learn more about them, since they are not highlighted a lot in literature, even if it is true that there are more and more books about them. I also heard a lot about Jennifer Donnelly, about her novel: Revolution and I was very curious to discover one of her work.

First we discover any Serafina, a young mermaid in phase to be announced before the court, to be the heir to her kingdom. This means she has to pass several tests and to promise her life to the young prince to whom she is engaged to. And for once, I must say that I was surprised to see that the girl is happy with her future wedding as she greatly appreciates the prince. Yes because I was expecting to see a rebellion on one side or the other and this is actually not the case. But of course, a lot of things happen. While the young woman must manage the stress and expectations of each person, she also had the strangest dream ever, wanting her help. And while an attack shakes her kingdom into chaos, it seems that this dream is much more important than she might have initially thought. To save the people who rely on her, she must follow her destiny, although it is very difficult for her to accept it.

I liked the story. The author introduces us to a lot of myths and stories about misunderstood creatures and it is true that everything was really intriguing. I was also surprised to see a mention of Atlantis here; I did not expect that at all. Serafina is a character I enjoyed discovering. While she seems a little naive and overprotected at the beginning of the story, she will be forced to change and to evolve to the person she is intended to become. It was quite interesting to see the change in this short time, and to see her assimilate truths that are not necessarily easy to accept. Regarding the Prince, I was quite surprised to see that she does not have more questions, and while we suspect the identity of one of the characters in the story, I was surprised to see that the hypothesis was not even possible for the young woman. Yet I am quite curious to see what will happen later, because I ‘m sure that many things will follow.

The novel was a nice introduction to this world we did not know about and I really enjoyed learning more this way. The heroine seems perhaps a bit simple at first but she gains weight while advancing in the chapters and I’m curious to see the person she will become.



41 thoughts on “Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly

  1. This book intrigued me from the moment I discovered it. Like you I was attracted to the stunning cover and also like you I like reading about mermaids. I’m really glad you liked it and hope I will like it too! 🙂

  2. Honestly, I don’t like the cover or the synopsis, lol. But I do really want to read more mermaid books. I’ve only ever read two (I think), one of which I hated and the other one had a really lovely twist on mermaids. Anyway, I need to see heroines who grow and develop throughout the story, so I’m glad this one does. I really love learning about different myths, too!

  3. What a lovely cover, it reminds me of Aquamarina who was a character in an animated series that I loved as a girl.

    Hopefully though simple in this first book the characters will develop during future books.

  4. I think the cover is quite gorgeous too, but then I have a thing for underwater scenes 🙂

    Haven’t read too many books about mermaids. This one had caught my eye before as well. If character develops over the series I may pick it up.

  5. This is one that really doesn’t appeal to me, mermaid books and I just don’t get along. I do like that it features Atlantis, but so far the reviews are middle of the road, so I am going to pass.

  6. Glad Serafina grows throughout the story and becomes a bit more worldly so to speak. I have this one on my list for next week so I’m excited to find out what I’ll think of her. I hope book two continues in this vein and has Serafina growing and maturing:)

  7. I have this one for review too, but haven’t started it yet. Serafina sounds like she goes through some major character development which is always good, and I love the sound of all the myths!

  8. All mermaid books I read are always either extrodinarily cringe-worthy or simply just plain old bad, so I’m really happy to hear you enjoyed this one so much – especially as I’ve been seeing quite a few mixed reviews for it. But I’ll definitely have to try this one because you make it sound so fantastic! 😀 Thanks so much for sharing Melliane and, as always, BRILLIANT review! <33

  9. That is an awesome cover. It sounds like maybe this story takes place mostly under the sea? – which I think would be cool. And an Atlantis mention is kinda interesting – I suppose merfolk living under the sea would probably know all about that wouldn’t they? 🙂

    Sounds good!

  10. I really actually loved this (I gave it a 4, so pretty close) it was pretty interesting to read about (although confusing at times, especially because of the info dumps) and I’m not too much of a fan of mermaids, but this was written beautifully, and very visual, which was great. Probably what kept me reading, because I wasn’t really a fan of Serafina at first, though I did like her as she changed, but I LOVED Neela. There was a lot of things going for it though, no romance (well, not really), mainly about sisterhood which you don’t get much either, and it was very well done, and yes, a great start to a series (the first books are usually so-so anyway) 🙂

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