Writing isn’t a very easy thing. I’m fairly sure that anyone who has ever picked up a pen and paper has learned that lesson. But writing about mermaids? That takes the challenge of writing to a whole new level.
When Lost Voices arrived in the mail, I wasn’t completely sure that it was going to be a book I liked. It looked fluffy and cliché; “All filler, no killer,” if you will. And I was not pleasantly surprised upon opening the book. The first sentence seemed like that of every other book: “’Lucette? Did you even hear the question?’” Bland, drab, and ordinary. However, as I read on, I slowly became more and more obsessed with the intricate yet simple tale.
Lost Voices follows Luce, a young girl who was raised on the outskirts of society. After her father disappears off the coasts of Alaska, Luce is left to live with her uncle, who regularly beats Luce during his drunken tirades. After her uncle finally crosses the line, Luce is salvaged from the wreckage of the trauma and turned into a mermaid. She’s then adopted by a motley tribe of mermaids who, despite their differences, manage to get along and stay together. But Luce’s fight to retain her inner humanity puts her at odds with the other mermaids, and soon she realizes that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
Ms. Porter does an excellent job of illustrating the female dynamic. However, amidst her girliness, she leaves out a very important element: the male figure. And, while Luce tries to remember that not all men are bad, the story nonetheless demonizes them. Although it’s worth noting that Luce’s particular story line is a shining example of acceptance and forgiveness.
The plot-line of the book is exciting and fast-paced, something which I thoroughly enjoyed. There isn’t a whole lot of waiting around for something to happen, and surely no skipping pages. Every chapter introduces new characters, wacky plot-twists, or back-story to the already amazingly well-sculpted characters.
I very much enjoyed reading Lost Voices. It’s a strong, well-built story that leaves you wondering just enough to keep you reading, but explains enough that you don’t become confused and uninterested. And, on top of that, it’s a story about mermaids, which surely beats out another book about vampires.
Lilly is fearless, except when it comes to spiders. Lilly is brave, except when it comes to extreme sports. Lilly is awesome, no matter what.