Saturday, April 24, 2010
Written by: Donna Jo Napoli
Released: September 1, 1998 by Scholastic Inc.
Summary: In Donna Jo Napoli's beautiful prose, the tragic love story between a mermaid and a mortal comes to life for young readers. When Sirena meets Philoctetes, Hercules' friend, she falls in love. But the young warrior must return home to fight the Trojan War and leave his magical love behind.
I loved how this book incorporated Greek stories (like the Rick Riordan books do) into the actual story which is a little but Little Mermaid. The history behind how mermaids came to be was interesting as was how they would become immortal.
The romance of the novel was bittersweet just like then ending but at the same time I don’t think that it would have worked the same way, nor would it have been so beautiful. It was nice to read about how the love between Sirena and Philoctetes grew as they spent their years on their island and how they made their relationship work for them. I don’t think that it would have worked if it wasn’t just the two of them secluded on their island either. I think that prejudices would have then interfered and come between them.
The plot was simple and to the point; mermaid falls in love with sailor, sailor falls in love with mermaid, they live together in their romance until something forces them apart but their love lives on. The secondary characters had few appearances but they helped move along the story and sometimes interfered as well. Basically they were the parts that caused any friction.
I thought that Sirena as a mermaid was the smartest out there. She seemed to not be swayed by the pack and was able to place herself apart from the mob mentality that persisted with all the other sea creatures. She seemed to be the only one who was actually capable of having true feelings that weren’t derived from the want to only become immortal.
One thing that I really didn’t care for with this book was the fact that it was written in prose. I don’t know why but it just always takes me so much longer to get into a book and a character when it’s written like that. However, it was beautifully written and I did enjoy it once I got the hang of read it like that.
Overall, I’m giving this book a 6/10. While I did enjoy it, nothing really happened.