Review: Lies Beneath (Lies Beneath # 1) by Anne Greenwood Brown

Lies Beneath - Anne Greenwood Brown

When I learned there was a story about murderous mermaids living in Lake Superior, I couldn't resist checking it out.  I haven't read many books that take place so close to home, so I was quite excited at the prospect of reading Lies Beneath.


The North Shore is probably one of my favorite places on earth.  While I would never live there (lake-effect snow, **shudders**), it is a breathtakingly beautiful area.  This particular story takes place on the Apostle Islands in WI, which is probably a five hour drive from Minneapolis.  The book focuses on the struggle of a merman named Calder White, who is essentially a reluctant serial killer.  Calder cannot resist his mental connection to his sisters and returns home to discover that the family of the man who killed his mother has been found.  Together, Calder and his sisters embark on a mission to take revenge against the humans who ripped their family apart.


Sounds intriguing, right?


Unfortunately, the story quickly evolves into a tale of forbidden insta-love and contains every cliche ever associated with paranormal romance.  While the story isn't badly written, there was never a moment that hooked my attention or compelled me to care about Calder or Lily.  Lies Beneath has too many Twilight-esque similarities, such as the romantic lead who possesses seriously disturbing stalkerish tendencies (ex. the first time he sees Lily is when he's spying on her from her bedroom closet), and the self-sacrificial heroine who romanticizes her monstrous love-interest.


This story would have been markedly better had it focused on the mythology and folklore tied to mermaids.  I actually appreciated the author's brutal portrayal of mermaids, but having Calder narrate the story was a mistake because the reader is not permitted to experience revelations about mermaids along with Lily.  Instead, the reader knows the horribleness of Calder's disposition and life well before Lily does.  It doesn't exactly leave much room for mystery or surprises. 


At any rate, I probably won't read the rest of this series unless I find myself with a tremendous amount of time on my hands.