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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 2.5 stars, 5 Jun 2006
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This review is from: The Last Mermaid (Mass Market Paperback)
I enjoyed SA's "The Smoke Thief" immensely and already have it's sequel on order. After such a great introduction to a newly discovered author, I then ordered several other books by Shana Abé, including "The Last Mermaid"

I've already stated in a previous review that SA does not get the reader hooked on her stories with dark, explosive action scenes, or charm the reader with her humour. She carried off "The Smoke" Thief" I think because it was such a cracking story line; however there was nothing of this in "The Last Mermaid". The basic premise was good, that of the last living Siren who saves a drowning man, Kell. In return for his life he must offer her his heart and soul and never leave her. He is initially entranced by his beautiful mermaid and together they dwell happily with their children on an isolated island off the Scottish coast, until one day Kell grows distant, soon resenting his sea born wife and children and his inability to leave the island as they can. In a moment of insanity he snatches the locket which contains his soul from the Siren's neck, dooming himself to death and the Siren to a lonely existence. Before returning to the open seas, the Siren in her pain curses love. To keep her island and children safe from faithless mortals she ensures three generations of her line will find love almost impossible.

Each of the three stories within this book are set in different time periods; 512 ("The Legend"), 1721 ("The Hero") and the Present ("The Siren"). I felt that the last story was the most moving, as modern American Jessie has no idea of her heritage until she finds herself swimming in the waters of Kell, an island she's inherited, with a fish tail instead of legs. I also enjoyed the fact that the Siren is male in "The Hero", a man up against a deadly female assassin and her mentor dubbed "The Hand of God". The first story in this book is "The Legend", the story of a Prince rescued by a Siren after he is betrayed. I felt this was the dullest story by far; however my aversion to historical romance does make me somewhat biased. In fact it took several sittings to read my way through this 200 page story before moving on to the other two far superior offerings.

If you want wrenching emotions, humorous word play and action, then I'm afraid to say that you should give "The Last Mermaid" a miss. If however you prefer a softer, more haunting quality to your romance then I recommend this book to you. As a big fan of writers such as Sherrilyn Kenyon and Gena Showalter, I personally just don't find SA to be as exciting an author as this pair.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very average stuff from a great author, 17 Mar 2008
This review is from: The Last Mermaid (Mass Market Paperback)
I'm such a fan of Shana Abe, her prose is often sheer poetry, so beautiful. However I wouldn't recommend this as an intro to her work. The idea sounded really exciting but I was really disappointed with the stories, they all seemed to be missing a certain something. I would have gave it 2 stars if not for the lovely prose.

The first story (siren and the king) and the second story (assassin and the selkie) were fine but seemed to fizzle out and run out of spark. Maybe they would have worked better as longer romances? It was a shame because I really wanted to like the characters but they didn't seem that developed. They were both 7/10

However the last story was the worst. Maybe its just me but I just didn't get it and I found myself skimming the pages. It was the only one with a modern setting and I just couldn't get into the story. It sounds a bit harsh but feel this was the weakest story and really let the whole collection down.

Unless you are a die hard fan who has to collect everything by Shana Abe, I would give this a miss and glom her other wonderful works ie Secret Swan etc
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The Last Mermaid
The Last Mermaid by Shana Abe (Mass Market Paperback - Jun 2004)
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