ARC review, book launch, fantasy, Nikki Haverstock

Snowed in Mermaid by Nikki Haverstock

Brooke is preparing to leave Purgatory Falls to spend Christmas with her parents. While she hopes to return to the paranormal safe haven she’s lived in for the past few months, she suspects that once she’s under the influence of her controlling mother she will fall back into the grooves of her old life.

However, Brooke’s plans go awry when a car crashes into the tree of wood nymph, and her best friend, Twyla. Injured, and suffering from the curse that killed the driver of the car that hit her, Twyla’s prognosis seems dire. Brooke has no choice but to postpone her trip and team up with dragon shifter policeman, Aiden, to find a killer and break the curse.

I inhaled the first book in this series and I couldn’t wait for the sequel. However, despite lots to love in this second outing, it was a bit hit and miss for me.

The through theme of this book is about the suffocating nature of a successful family. Brooke is fighting for independence, Aiden is there to give advice as a successful escapee of a controlling family, and the murder mystery explores this in the vast vampire empire that runs the ski resort.

Haverstock realistically portrays the benefits, and downsides, of being part of a rich family that provides comfort but expects much in return. You can clearly see how difficult it is for Brooke to untangle herself, even as you cheer her on to stay in Purgatory Falls.

Brooke isn’t used to snow, but she is certainly getting her fair share of it during her first winter in her new home. The descriptions of the snow were beautiful and frightening in equal measure. I could feel the cold and grew tense during the scenes of driving on snowy roads with poor visibility.

Twyla’s predicament is upsetting and it’s lovely to see all her friends rally around her. I admire the author for putting such an important character into such peril.

Unfortunately, elements of this book didn’t work for me.

Aiden is a nice guy. He’s a lot like Brooke. Guarded, escaped from a controlling family, noble and decent. Unfortunately, he’s not a very interesting person. I’m sure I’d want to have him by my side in real life, but Brooke and Aiden are as dry as crackers when they’re together, and as 90% of the book is the two of them talking, it drained the enjoyment for me. I sorely missed Tavros, Twyla and Esmeralda. The brief mentions of Brooke’s attraction to Aiden felt forced.

The murder mystery involved a sprawling family, and I got lost in the names and connections, especially as few of the characters appeared for more than a paragraph. If the paranormal and magical aspect was taken away, it wouldn’t change the murder, as it was focused on money. I felt cheated by the end reveal, because there was no way I could have put the clues together to guess the killer.

I’m usually drawn into Haverstock’s books and can’t put them down, but the writing felt a little different with this one. It’s very dialogue heavy, and I missed Brooke’s thoughts and descriptions. I also really missed Tavros, Twyla and Esmeralda. Brooke and Aiden are very serious and intense, and the other characters are important for livening them up. The scenes where they’re present were great, but there were too few.

I also missed the elements of magic and fantasy that made me fall in love with Purgatory Falls. They were still there, and I loved when they appeared, but it was only in a handful of scenes.

I award Snowed in Mermaid

Thank you to the author for providing me with an ARC. I’m voluntarily leaving an honest review.

6 thoughts on “Snowed in Mermaid by Nikki Haverstock”

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