Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Marjorie Liu: In The Dark Dreams

In The Dark Dreams is the latest Dirk and Steele novel.  I seemed to have read it out of order and should have read Dark Dreamers instead which is an anthology.  I went into this book believing that it was a continuation of the novels and so I expected the standard supernaturals.  I was absolutely not prepared for a rich undersea world that included mer people.  This is the very first urban fantasy book that I have read with mermen and mermaids.  That fact alone drew me into the story.

Of course this book would not be a Marjorie Liu book without love at first woo woo.  You know the kind of love where you know someone for five seconds and then pledge the rest of your life with them and then seal the deal with some vanilla sex.

Jenny is a little girl and she is on the beach when she spots Perrin a male mermen. He is hurt and so she takes of her shirt and presses it to his wound.  She sings him a little song to calm him because he looks scared.  Suddenly a man walks naked out of the water and he pushes her away.  He encourages her to run and she does as the man, who would later turn out to be Perrin’s father Turon dragged him back to the sea. Apparently from that little meeting the fall desperately in love.  They spend years meeting in their dreams until the threat of the Kracken, (an undersea creature) waking from a deep slumber drives them together.

 So as you can guess, the romance again was completely unbelievable.  I just don’t buy that a five minute conversation on the beach as children is enough to bind two creatures together for life.  I will however say that the rest of the story was compelling.  I found myself drawn into her descriptions and the personalities she chose to give the creatures of the sea.  I was amused by the fact that dolphins were seen as the busybodies of the ocean always willing to tattle tale.  It is quite different than the image we have of dolphins.  A log of imagination went into creating this book and that alone makes it worth the read.

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