Release date: May 6, 2014
Publisher: Disney Press
Reading level: Young Adult
Series: Book 1
Links: Author's Website / Goodreads
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
The first in a series of four epic tales set in the depths of the ocean, where six mermaids seek to protect and save their hidden world.
Deep in the ocean, in a world not so different from our own, live the merpeople. Their communities are spread throughout the oceans, seas, and freshwaters all over the globe.
When Serafina, a mermaid of the Mediterranean Sea, awakens on the morning of her betrothal, her biggest worry should be winning the love of handsome Prince Mahdi. And yet Sera finds herself haunted by strange dreams that foretell the return of an ancient evil. Her dark premonitions are confirmed when an assassin's arrow poisons Sera's mother. Now, Serafina must embark on a quest to find the assassin's master and prevent a war between the Mer nations. Led only by her shadowy dreams, Sera searches for five other mermaid heroines who are scattered across the six seas. Together, they will form an unbreakable bond of sisterhood and uncover a conspiracy that threatens their world's very existence.
When I first began reading Deep Blue, I was overwhelmed with all of the information getting thrown at me and the variety of made-up words and names I had to keep track of and I was worried I was going to DNF this one. Luckily, I stuck it out because Deep Blue ended up being an exciting and magical start to a series I'm excited to continue.
Deep Blue opens with the mermaid Serafina preparing for an important royal event. Unfortunately, she's constantly being distracted by the mysterious dreams she's been having. When the day comes for her betrothal to a mer prince from a nearby sea, all hell breaks loose. Serafina is forced to grow up very quickly and take charge as the threat of war approaches and her dreams prove to be extremely important. While the beginning of it started out a little slow and confusing, the plot quickly picked up and was action packed until the very end. I've always been a fan of mermaid stories, but often they bring the same thing to the table. This was not the case with Deep Blue. I liked all of the original elements Donnelly combined, from Atlantis to dragons.
There were quite a few characters introduced in this series-starter and I had a bit of a hard time keeping track of them all, but hopefully we'll get to know them better as the series continues. The main group of mermaids definitely stood out to me and I'm looking forward to learning more about each of the girls and their backgrounds.
Deep Blue did have a slow start and the made-up language (I discovered the glossary at the end too late!) was often frustrating, but, overall, I really enjoyed this book and am eager to read the next addition to the series. This isn't your typical mermaid tale at all. I have heard such amazing things about Donnelly's previous releases, so will definitely be checking those out soon!