Once upon a time… there was a little mermaid who wished for legs so she could walk on land and learn about the strange creatures that lived there. She thought it would be easy, adjusting to life as a human.
She was wrong.
And even after finding happiness with her family, the Sea Witch isn’t yet done with our little mermaid, giving an enigmatic warning about her future…
A Harmony of Water and Weald is a companion collection to the asexual fairytale retelling Sea Foam and Silence, delving a little deeper into our mermaid’s first experiences as a human as well as what happened after her happily ever after.
I received an ARC of A Harmony of Water and Weald from the author, Lynn E. O’Connacht, herself. We’re friends and she mentioned that she had included me in her acknowledgements, so I was very excited to read it. This did not influence my opinion.
Sea Foam and Silence is one of my favourite books and an amazing verse novel. It’s a retelling of The Little Mermaid, with an asexual little mermaid. You can check out my review here. Since I enjoyed the first book so much, I was very happy to receive the ARC for the companion novel.
One of the things that I find most fascinating with stories that feature magical people is the possibility to see the world through a non-human perspective. It challenges how I perceive certain things, and makes me think more about what it means to be me. O’Connacht does it so well here. The mermaid’s perspective really adds to the worldbuilding, as so much is explained just through how she perceives the places she goes to and the people she meets.
A Harmony of Water and Weald is a collection of verse stories. It shows different events in the little mermaid’s life. It was an interesting way of getting to know more about her and her thoughts on the human world. One of the passages that I found most fascinating is where the little mermaid discusses a mermaid story that the humans have, and where she wonders how they could have gotten so much wrong. I thought that this was an amazing allegory about how easy it is to get a portrayal of an identity wrong, if the author is not #ownvoices.
What I love about O’Connacht’s writing is how she can write about serious things and then have funny and light moments in between. There were several passages where I had to laugh, and even now, reading over them, I have a smile on my lips.
The triad relationship between the three main characters is wonderful. It’s so lovely to see the dynamic between all of them, and I especially loved how the princess and the little mermaid interacted with each other. It was adorable!
It ends on a slight cliffhanger, and has left me yearning for more.
A Harmony of Water and Weald is a beautiful companion novel. The writing is so magical! I recommend reading it after reading Sea Foam and Silence to have a beautiful reading experience.
Are you interested in reading A Harmony of Water and Weald? What are your favourite verse novels?