I don’t often review books on Miss LiV Adventures, but The Mermaid and the Bear, by Ailish Sinclair, may be of interest to many of my readers due to its genre and style. I’ve also enjoyed following this author’s blog, ailishsinclair.com and you may too!
REVIEW: I teetered between 4 and 5 stars, but decided this book (5) is indeed amazing since it had the perfect combination of good, fun storytelling and authentic and ‘deeper’ historical context. Before I go into detail, I’ll declare this an entertaining and satisfying read with a playful and dear aspect that kept it at the top of my reading list each time I considered what to pick up on an evening. I loved the characters and was eager to return to their story-world.
With a topic of a witch panic, I somewhat dreaded a heavy and dark read, but the description – and my experience from reading Ailish Sinclair’s delightful blog – led me to believe the romance and style of the book would suit my appreciation of well told tales and sweet romance, as well. The pairing was artfully done!
The horrors of the Aberdeen witch trials were not diminished, but were delivered in a way that stayed true to the narrating character’s sweet heart. The reasons and religious views that fueled the fires of conflict in that period (and beyond) were presented in a well-rounded way that allowed the reader to both abhor the incidents and forgive the misguided. The points (and characters) were well illustrated when showing that some darker accusers were not acting as religiously correct (or misled), but were rather using the confusion and religious/political unrest to play out the desires of their corrupted – perhaps even evil – selves.
I will definitely recommend this book, and I’m looking forward to more novels from this lively, thoughtful and enjoyable voice.
-Kennedy J Quinn (aka Sheri J Kennedy)