Mermaids Never Drown / Zoraida Cordova & Natalie C. Parker, Editors / Book Review


Sirens seeking vengeance. Mermaids seeking legs. Cryptozoology. Boardwalk amusement parks. Deadly storms on the Eastern Seaboard. Generations of secrets.

These fourteen tales dive into the depths of aquatic existence, at sea and on land. Mermaids walk among us. Mermaids watch us from the ocean swells. Welcome to the shadows, the murky depths, the line between magic and mundane. Welcome to the waves.



I absolutely loved this collection. It was everything I could have wanted from mermaids and more. I wasn't expecting much--it's an anthology, after all, and those tend to be pretty middle-of-the-road for me--and so I was absolutely shocked and wonderfully surprised by this read.


Marvelous Mermaids Everything I could have wanted from mermaids was in this collection. Dark and stormy sirens played their part, sometimes maliciously and sometimes with a perfectly cold indifference to humankind. Feisty land-dwelling mermaids spoke out for ocean life. The line between land and water was tantalizingly toed, and I loved every second of it.

Variety One thing I'm always wary of when it comes to anthologies on a very specific theme is sameness. This book is totally, completely, without a doubt about mermaids and yet every one of these stories was so incredibly different. And I adored that. I adored that the theme is both so clear and so easily and expertly expressed in so many styles. Every story felt fresh and new.

Watery Ways This book is an excellent beach read, but it doesn't just encapsulate sunny seaside days. Nights under the cover of the waves play their part. Ravaging storms tear apart towns. Predatory voices lurk in the swells. Boardwalk lights twinkle. Dark underwater caverns yawn. Every seaside haunt was perfect.


Most of the stories in this collection are perfectly YA, but there are a few that toe the line... and one that definitely goes over it. This is a collection I would highly recommend to all fantasy fans, but I'd add a caveat for anyone in the YA market looking for a "safe" reading space. This book can get a little bit more mature than YA readers might be expecting. Mature

Every one of these stories was so incredibly different... and because of that, I experienced some mental whiplash throughout this collection. Going from a particularly whiny young teenager in one story to a very mature couple back to back will do that to you. Whiplash

This might feel like a strange critique for a collection, since the stories don't connect. What could "pacing" have to do with a short story collection? All of the stories in this collection are strong, but the opening and closing stories are snappy as well, excellently paced and incredibly sharp in their storytelling. And the middle stories, while well-told, are more introspective. They unfold more slowly, and so it can feel like a bit of a lull when you trudge through the middle. These stories are undoubtedly worth it, but they don't move as quickly or as distinctly as their bookends. Pacing



Fans of Ed. Dahlia Adler's At Midnight will love this new magically twisted set of tales. Those who loved Tera Lynn Childs's Forgive My Fins will adore these new tongue-in-cheek mermaids.


Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Date: September 26, 2023
Series: Untold Legends
Add to Goodreads
Buy it HERE

Note: I was provided with an ARC by the publisher through Edelweiss+ in exchange for an honest review. All opinions here are my own.


  1. This sounds like an entertaining read and I love the cover! Thanks for sharing your thoughts about it.

  2. This sounds great! I'm glad you were able to enjoy it despite some of the cons. Wonderful review!

  3. You had me at the title, to be honest - I do love a good twist on the familiar and this sounds right up my street :)

  4. Looks like you enjoyed it. Not sure if it's something I'd enjoy though.

  5. This sounds like a fabulous anthology on mermaids, and I do like that there is a variety of stories. Thanks for sharing your review!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Sky's End / Marc J. Gregson / Book Review

Most Ardently: A Pride & Prejudice Remix / Gabe Cole Novoa / Book Review

Best and Worst of 2023