Sunday, November 23, 2014

Waking the Merrow

Remember the over-the-top-crazed-fan-girl enthusiasm I oozed in 2013 when I finished reading Anthony Paull’s Desperation Lingers?
Mere weeks from the end of 2014, I’ve found this year’s equivalent.
Heather Rigney’s debut novel, Waking the Merrow - adapted from her short story “Mermaids Are Not Nice” - impressed the hell out of me from the very first sentence to the last.
Evie McFagan is just the kind of heroine I love.  She’s a pudgy, unattractive and friendless funeral director steeped in alcohol and the lies she tells her acquaintances at the local bar.  Utterly unreliable, she has trouble finding allies who’ll believe that her daughter has been kidnapped…by an evil, man-eating mermaid.
From there, Rigney weaves a tale - or tail, if you will (sorry - couldn’t resist) - through the waters of Narragansett Bay.  She earns major props from this child of Hog Island summers when she touches briefly, poetically, and violently on the nearby islands of Prudence, Hope and Despair.  Werewolf and vampire battles have nothing on Ms. Rigney’s imaginings.  Trust me.  The combination of warring merpeople and artful writing makes this a page-turner.
Then there’s Rigney’s sense of humor:
“Naked, tattooed men meandered around, lit torches, congregated in groups, spoke in hushed voices.  It was like pictures I had seen on the internet of ComicCon, except no one was wearing a cape.  And there were no females.  So, yes, it was just like ComicCon.”
Yeah.  I know you just LOL’ed.
Last but not least, there’s, well, the end.  Which I can’t discuss because I don’t do spoilers.  Suffice it to say I am waiting for the sequel.  (You hear that, Heather?  Hurry up!)
In the meantime, my only gripe with Heather Rigney is that I’ve now got one more creature to worry about when I swim in Narragansett Bay.
For more about Heather Rigney and her work, visit her web site.  Or click here to buy Waking the Merrow.

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