Review: Deep Betrayal by Anne Greenwood Brown

It’s been thirty days, two hours, and seventeen minutes since Calder left Lily standing on the shores of Lake Superior. Not that she’s counting. And when Calder does return, it’s not quite the reunion Lily hoped for. Especially after she lets her father in on a huge secret: he, like Calder, is a merman. Obsessed with his new identity, Lily’s dad monopolizes Calder’s time as the two of them spend every day in the water, leaving Lily behind.

Then dead bodies start washing ashore. Calder blames his mermaid sisters, but Lily fears her father has embraced the merman’s natural need to kill. As the body count grows, everyone is pointing fingers. Lily doesn’t know what to believe—only that whoever’s responsible is sure to strike again…

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Review contains some spoilers due to being a sequel and all. Review for first book is here.

So, contrary to that of the first book, Deep Betrayal is written in Lily’s point of view instead of sexy merman Calder’s. Which you would think would be awesome but… I don’t know, it was okay. I mean, we get to look at Calder more (yum) but Lily is more or less landlocked and spends most of the time out of the water. And as sad as this makes me to say, I think it was because of that that it took me a long time to really get in this story.

Then there’s the major story element where Lily’s dad (major spoiler for the first book alert) finds his mermanishness and he and Calder go gallivanting (what’s the fish equivalent for this word?) off to be mermen together leaving Lily to hang around her human peeps. Well, what a way to take a relationship and just make it kinda non-existent without them actually breaking up. This eventually becomes a major point of contention between Calder and Lily which is strange to say the least. She gets jealous of her dad for getting her boyfriend’s attention. Out of context it’s weird. Even in context it’s still kinda weird.

And it is like this for many, many pages. In about the last 150 pages it got more interesting and action-y (if not a bit strange at times, but whatever) as finally we see more plot moving with Lily and Calder together and doing things like they were in the first book. But then, to be honest, the very end was kind of a baseball-smacking-your-face-from-left-field. Don’t get me wrong, I liked it, but it was one of those things where it was the last thing I actually expected to happen happened.

I was so excited to see a sequel for Lies Beneath, but the sequel felt as though it had been pieced together from the original outlinings of a multi-book series into one book. Dad plot, the strange, but interesting mythical creature plot and then ending, which just… needed to be longer; it just felt too rushed. None of the above mentioned plot arcs really intermingled, thus gave the multi-book-pushed-into-one feel.

I also recommend Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown and Between the Sea and Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore.

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Jennifer Dee

Jennifer spends most of her time with books. Whether it's reading, writing, selling, fangirling or crafting for them. When her duties YA/ MG editor of Novel Thoughts are momentarily fulfilled, she works as a Children's bookseller and is the Middle Grade editor for Riffle. She also enjoys coffee, bagels, knitting and Percy Jackson.
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