Title: Of Poseidon
Author: Anna Banks
Release Date: Available
With Of Poseidon, author Anna Banks makes her debut in the world of young adult romance. Clumsy high school senior Emma has no idea she can hold her breath for thirty minutes or play basketball with dolphins until she runs into Galen (literally) at the beach. Galen is prince of a kingdom of the Syrena, mermaid-like creatures who live at the bottom of the ocean. When Galen discovers that Emma could be the glue that would reunite the two estranged Syrena kingdoms, he takes it upon himself to train her in their ways. Naturally, a forbidden and enticing romance develops.
Perhaps the most fascinating aspect of this novel is its narrative style. Told from both Emma’s and Galen’s points of view, Emma’s narrative is in the first person, while Galen’s is in the third. This gives a unique insight into Emma’s feelings and motives, while Galen remains more mysterious. The different narrators also allow the reader to witness Emma’s exploration of the Syrena world while Galen is simultaneously trying to understand humans. Emma is witty and funny, describing herself as an “intoxicated walrus”. Above all, it is her candid dialogue, self-depreciating humor, and overuse of the word “Ohmysweetgoodness” that kept me hooked until the last page.
Although the story is a light romantic fantasy, some readers may be sensitive to the dynamic of Emma and Galen’s relationship. Galen always has Emma’s best interests at heart, but he is slightly Edward Cullen-esque, sneaking into her room through the balcony and stalking her on her date with a human boy. Emma is flattered, not disturbed, that he can make her “feel like some sort of pet”. And she is not the only female marginalized in the book. In Syrena culture, females have no choice in their mating partner, and do not even have to be present at the marriage ceremony. However, Banks does point out and briefly address the injustice of this system.
Overall, I found Of Poseidon humorous and engaging. Readers will enjoy Emma’s quirky diction and her charming banter with Galen. The novel is a quick read, an excellent book to devour over a weekend. I look forward to reading Anna Banks’ future books for young adults.
Review by Sami;
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