Title: Of Poseidon, Of Triton, Of Neptune
Series: The Syrena Legacy
Author: Anna Banks
Genre: Teen Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (Macmillan)
Release Date: Book 1: May 22, 2012
My Thoughts: The Syrena Legacy is a 3-book series by Anna Banks consisting of the titles: Of Poseidon (Book 1), Of Triton (Book 2), and Of Neptune (Book 3). It is, for all intents & purposes, Twilight with mermaids. Except, I guess where it lacks some of the bite (ha, no pun intended) is that there’s nothing super dangerous or predatory about mermaids–or mermen.
You can read the summary elsewhere online to see what the story’s all about, but it’s the expected girl-meets-shifter/otherworldly-guy teen paranormal romance, and that’s never a bad thing! It fits the genre neatly and I’ve never read a mermaid one (let’s see…to date I’ve done vampires, witches, angels, gods, and right now I’m on aliens), so it belongs in your TBR if you’re a regular YA PNR reader. The writing is sassy, flirty and fun. The books are light reads that won’t hurt your brain; perfect for relaxing. Some of the side characters, like Galen’s sister Rayna and his friend Rachel, are extremely entertaining.
Forgive me for picking a few nits, but the book begins with a horrific tragedy: the MC, Emma, witnesses her best friend killed by a shark. Talk about trauma. And this after Emma just lost her dad to cancer. One would expect Emma to be pretty devastated and haunted for a long time, maybe show signs of PTSD. Now, I get that a merman showing up at your high school would be VERY distracting. But Emma’s ability to bounce right out of any grief to be constantly cute, flirty, silly, and concerned only with her love life and the inner-workings of Syrena politics for the rest of the series rubbed me the wrong way. Emma is also gorgeous, quick-witted, and (without spoiling anything) a very powerful being herself, so she didn’t have any flaws to speak of. (Later books occasionally mention she used to feel like an outcast for her pale complexion, but it’s more of an afterthought. We never see her being treated this way by her community.) However, my lack of sympathy for the MC is remedied by an interesting cast of supporting characters, and mermaid kingdom worldbuilding and intrigue that might put Aquaman to shame.
If you want a lighthearted beach read, I’d say go for Of Poseidon. Especially if you’re a fan of Twilight, Beautiful Creatures, The Goddess Test, Guardian, and all things YA PNR, this one goes right up on the list.