Escape to Mermaid Cove, where pirates once roamed in underground coves and smugglers hid their treasure troves…
Like everyone raised in the magical seaside town of Mermaid Cove, the ocean was a huge part of Rose Barros’ life. She lived to the rhythm of the tides until a near-death experience changed her love for the water to a soul-deep terror, driving a wedge between herself and her sister, Reen.
Now, the only thing threatening to drown Rose is a mountain of bills and her sense of duty towards her ageing mother, Pearl. She needs her sister more than ever, but rebellious Reen has skipped town and shows no interest in returning.
When Pearl suddenly takes a turn for the worse, the sisters are forced to reunite. But they discover a heart-stopping secret about how their mother first came to live in the small town. Will Reen run from Mermaid Cove for good? Or will facing up to their family history allow them to leave the past behind and finally put down roots in the place that once captured their hearts?
My thoughts: what started as a romance novel with local girl Rose and newcomer cop Shane, with a mystery they need to solve, takes a rather odd turn into fantasy territory. I should have guessed at all the references to Splash (the 90s movie where Darryl Hannah played a mermaid who falls in love with Tom Hanks). Rose and Reen’s mum Pearl has dementia and is dying. But there’s something she needs to tell them.
As the sisters reconnect and read their mother’s diary, they learn her surprising secret, and why they never met any of her family, and they realise why their connection to the ocean is so strong.
Split into 3 sections, narrated by Rose, then Reen and finally Pearl, the story of the women in their family builds and shifts focus creating a family saga that seems unlikely in a small New England town.
*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.