November 2012, 252 pages, Ebook, Review copy
Content: some teen romance, some violence, fair amount of humour, lots of snakes/snake like creatures
Summary from Ciye's website
Being the only human in a world of merfolk... isn’t easy. Florence Waverley chose to stay in Niemela, but things have gone awry. Secrets have risen and the prince she cares about has pulled away. All the while, dark dreams warn her of a tragedy that only she can stop. But in order to save the merman she loves, Florence will have to enter the Life Path tournament: a brutal test of fear and madness.
The tournament is a rite of passage--a maze where young mermaids and mermen battle to find their purpose. It is also a place where Florence will face grave danger: mermaids with evil magic, tunnels filled with sea fire, and guardians who wish to use her as a pawn in their secret plans. But will Florence be strong enough to survive the tournament... or will she perish inside it?
Another personally adapted for me version to reduce the snake instances which would have made me stop reading this ace tale about life underwater for a human who must among other things learn how to control sea animals. I'm once again grateful for Ciye censoring some of the scenes, as this is a wonderful series. I confess the story didn't head in the direction I thought it would until the end – what did happen was a huge surprise, and I was disappointed when I found myself at the end of the book. I don't want Florence's adventures to end! She grows hugely as a person, and learns to interact with more than just the merpeople like Princess Yolee.
Minor diversion alert
I'm rather fond of the variable ability Florence with animals because it reminds me of Fawn from Disney Fairies,
|Fawn looks ace in this outfit|
who is her land counterpart since Disney fairies can't swim, unlike Winx Club fairies who can with both Harmonix and Sirenix powers.
|Winx in Harmonix form trying to focus enough to gain Sirenix power in season 5 of Winx Club|
Minor diversion over
I have to say it didn't get a perfect grade as I thought Florence was being a tad melodramatic over being ignored by a certain merman, but that's a personal choice. The enemies stunned me by their deviousness, which was both creepy and cool at the same time. As for the games...the tests were immensely clever, and I both wished I could be in them and was heartily glad I didn't have to train for them. They are more fun than The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, that's for sure.
Princess Yolee made me smile a lot as usual, and she shines as a character with more strength than her family gives her credit for. Ok so I probably prefer her to Florence, but that's the way it is. I so wish Yolee could have her own stories, as they would be full of fun and some hardship. I do feel sorry for how lonely she was before Florence arrived, she's a sweet girl who is intelligent and frequently overlooked.
Be sure to read where it all started in book 1, Florence (Young Adult, 9/10E)