Want to follow my reviews?  Follow the Facebook page.
BROWSE BOOK REVIEWS:

"MERMAIDS ARE REAL: THE MYSTIQ PRONG" by BO WU

Posted by Matt McAvoy on Friday, October 12, 2018 Under: Book Reviews




This vivid and colourfully descriptive book goes straight into full-scale fantastical with very little warning.  Telling the tale of Benji, a thirteen-year-old boy who finds out he is, in fact, a mermaid/man, it seems two-parts children’s book to one-part grown-up.  Personally, I feel it is much better in its mature moments, because the story, once it starts to form, is a pretty good one – and an important one at that.

Wu is clearly passionate about the life in our oceans, and the message is a harsh, moral one.  Yet, sadly, for the most part, this becomes incidental – lost in all the detail, of which there is a huge amount.  For the first third, as Benji becomes accustomed to his undersea world, it feels somewhat like a Pixar movie, with bright colours and talking animals.  As the villainous Gouguon develops, however, the book moves toward an adventure-packed, dramatic concept – one much more suited to an older audience, and the author’s voices couldn’t be any more different.  With Gouguon so strongly anti-human, for all their disrespect and damage of the world, this is where it is at its best; by far, my favourite aspect of this book is the interaction with and in the human world, rather than the cartoonish feel of “Aquari”.  With such an important message, and such a ruthless adversary, one particular scene about two-thirds of the way through the book (in which Gouguon sacks an oil rig) really elevates “Mermaids are Real” to grand potential, promising to fully enter the genre of epic-scale showdown fantasy, “Planet of the Apes” or “Narnia”-style.  Sadly, though, it doesn’t deliver this, and the mature aspect of the book is short-lived in comparison to the rest.  I would have liked to have seen a great deal more made of this ecological message and the war brewing beneath it, and much less banter between the underwater characters.  When the tale unfolds, it is a long time coming, and in too small a relative ratio. 

I feel “Mermaids are Real” provides far too much detail, in its monologue and its dialogue, most of which is unnecessary and distracting – in fact, for much of the book I didn’t really know what was going on, because the small points were just coming at me too fast, and too many words were being spoken by the characters, to the extent where perhaps I was even missing the big points.  Bo is a good author, and knows how to craft a book, but in honesty it could comfortably shed a quarter of its peripheral content and be better for it.  There are quite a few errors in the proof - particularly regarding typos and, more specifically, commas – which Bo would be well advised to address. 

I think, primarily, though, this book could be fantastic, and has all the elements of a classic; I feel that it needs to take itself a little more seriously, because its message is about as serious as one gets.  It seems to be aimed at two different audiences, and I think Bo needs to decide whether this is a children’s book or a more serious one; I know which direction I think it should go.

BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON >

In : Book Reviews 


Tags: bo-wu  mermaids  environmental  ecological  marine-life  undersea  fantasy  atlantis  fiction 
Freedom's Light by Robert J. Saniscalchi
***
Action Thriller

Bucket Showers and Baby Goats by Christine Brown
****
Travel Memoir

Four Calling Burds by Vincent Meis
****
LGBTQ / Drama

Promises to the Fallen by Glyn Haynie
*****
War Fiction

An Unwanted and Unwilling Hero by E. Gourm
****
Historical Fantasy

The Girl in the Scarlet Chair by Janice TRemayne
****
Paranormal / YA

Freedom Sex and a Meat Cleaver by Sherman Miles
*****
Travel Memoir

Freedom Sex and a Meat Cleaver by Sherman Miles
****
Historical Fiction

The Intelligence Factor by Mike Logsdon
***
Sci Fi / Action

The Apple by Devashish Sardana
****
Action / Adventure

Destiny's War by Pyram King
****
Historical Fiction

Black Volta by PEte K.J.
****
Drama

Payback by Steve Bassett
***
Noir Fiction

Were We Awake by L.M. Brown
****
Short Stories

Almost Persuaded by Nigel C. Ferguson
****
Crime Thriller

Do We Have A Center by Walter Frank
*****
Politics

World Football Domination
****
Sci-Fi

Sour Blood
***
Crime Thriller

Beware of the Thought Bubbles
*****
Children's

Beyond The Prison Of Beliefs
****
Science/Religion

Rocky Mountain Noir
***
Comedy

Rocky Mountain Noir
***
Science Fiction

Foster Care To Millionaire
****
Memoir

Flow Like A River
*****
Thriller

Secrets To Being Amazing
****
Self-Help

13 Dark Tales: Collection Two
****
Short Stories

The Wooden Man
*****
Children's

Count It All Joy
*****
Drama

Myth Agent
****
Fantasy

Voice of the Sword
***
Fantasy

No Quarter: Dominium
***
Adventure

A Trinity of Wicked Tales
****
Horror


****
Short Stories

The Day I Made Good
****
Crime Drama

Complete Poetry of Norman AJ Berisford
*****
Poetry

Chuck the Rooster Loses His Voice
*****
Children's

Living Blind Without the Internet
****
Documentary

Devil in the Countryside
****
Historical Thriller

Monoland: Into the Gray Horizon
****
Fantasy

Corrosive
****
Horror

Woodiss is Willing
***
Comedy

The Fear
***
Horror

Superi: Reborn
*****
Fantasy

Murder in the Medical Center
***
Drama

The Eye of Nefertiti
****
Children's

Not Exactly Shakespeare
****
Comedy

Finding the Narrow Path
****
Biography

The Wyndham Werewolf
****
Short Stories

Only Human
***
Supernatural

What is Justice
**
Documentary

The Rat Tunnels of Isfahan
****
Historical Fantasy

I Once Was Lost But Now I'm Found
*****
Documentary

Never Too Late To Die
***½
Thriller

Understanding the Patterns of Your Life
***
Non-Fiction

Happiness is Just a Pill Away
*****
Comedy-Drama

The Lucky Winner
***
Crime Thriller

Endohuman
***
Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Tummy Rumble Quake
****
Children's

Monoland: The Shimmering Mist
****
Fantasy

Goodbye Butterfiles
*****
Psychology

Treading the Uneven Road
****
Short Stories

The Cuckoo Colloquium
****
Comedy

When I Turned Nineteen
*****
War Memoir

Fortuna and the Scapegrace
****
Comedy

Gnosis
***
Young Adult

Buy or Die
***
Satire

Faithful Servants
****
Drama

Ghost Dog
***
Crime Adventure

Looper
****
Drama

The Sinister Urge
**
Drama

Read to Succeed
*****
Self Improvement

Gone to the Dogs
*****
Comedy-Drama

Die Back
****
Fantasy

Finding My Platoon Brothers
*****
War Memoir

Delivering Virtue
****
Comedy

The Room Above
***
Fantasy

Written By Blood: Conviction
****
Action

The Day My Kisses Tasted Like Disorder
****
Poetry

I Have Demons
****
Short Stories

Victoria's Voice
****
Real Life

The Revolutionary Youth
*****
Drama

The Dog Thief
*****
Short Stories

Appointment With Fear
*****
Children's

Mermaids Are Real
***
Fantasy

Legends of Persia
***
Historical Fiction

My Groans Pour Out Like Water
*****
Poetry

47 Hours
*****
Political Thriller

The Road to Alexander
***
Historical Fiction

Father Divine's Bikes
****
Drama

Winning With Data
*****
Business

Aquila
****
Historical Fiction

Lions, Leopards and Storms, oh my!
***
Children's

Sparrowhawk on the Horizon
***
Historical Fiction

The Warehouse Tour
***
Short Stories

Feast of Sapphires
****
Poetry

The Night Alphabet
*****
Short Stories

Just Another Girl's Story
***
Autobiography

No-one Listens
***
Poetry

The Roving Mind
*****
Science

Malthus Revisited
***
Suspense/Thriller

My Weight Loss Journey
****
Self-Help

Change of Chaos
****
YA / Fantasy

Fish Farm
****
Thriller

Songs to New York
****
Short Stories

I Claudia
*****
Historical Fiction

God: Challenges From Philosphy and Science
****
Philosophy

The Friar's Lantern
*****
Role Play

Crazy About Kurt
****
Comedy

Dark Cure
****
Action

Translucent Boy
***
Sci-Fi Fantasy

Dart by Dale Renton
****
Sci-fi Fantasy

Monoland: Beyond the Monochrome
*****
Fantasy

Choose a Reality by Emmanuel Morfoboss
***
Self-Help

Wacky on the Junk by Kathy Varner
****
Memoir

Tags

1990s a-a-lotfy a-scholte abortion abuse action addiction adventure africa african-culture afterlife age ajay-shankar alcoholism alejandro-de-gutierre alexander-the-great alphabet american-comedy american-graffiti american-history american-politics ancient ancient-history animal-abuse animal-rescue animal-welfare anthology anthony-michaelides anthony-ranieri anthony-simola anti-hero anxiety arabian arabs artificial-intelligence asia atlantis australia autobiography bereavement biography bittersweet bizarre black-comedy blind bo-wu boats books borneo brian-kindall british british-empire business cameron-k-moore catholic cats chad-lee-erway challenge childhood childhood-trauma childrens-books christ christian christianity christina-williams christine-brown christopher-adam clinchandhill clint-thurmon cody-mclain coffee-break cognitive collection colonialism comedy coming corporate-crime cory-barclay coup creatures crime criminal-justice crm cruelty cynical dale-renton dark data data-analytics david-donachie david-grad david-lee-fish demons denise-wijayaratne detective devashish-sardana diary dictatorship diet disability dog-rescue dogs donald-trump drama drug-abuse drugs dwayne-gill dystopian e-gourm ea-minin earthquake ecological educational egyptian election elizabeth-hamilton-smyth emergency emmanuel-morfoboss emmanuella-hristova emotional empire environmental erotic espionage fable fairy-tale fairytale faith fallacious-rose family fantasy fascist felicia-watson fiction fiona-green first-world-war flash-fiction football foster-care frances-bloom frances-newton friendship frontier funny futuristic gangster george-dalrymple george-koloukis ghana glyn-haynie gm-o'connor god gods golf gory greg-hickey harlin-hailey health health-and-fitness heartbreaking heather-beal henry-woodiss high-school historical historical-fiction history holistic horror humour illustrated immigrants incest international internet ira ireland irish irish-stories italy j-kariuki jacinta-jade james-w-truax janice-tremayne japanese jennifer-macaire jesus jill-kearney john-paul-catton john-simpson journal jungle justice ka-cummins kathy-varner kurt-cobain kyla-ross l-a-macfadden l-m-brown la-noir lady-byrd laura-eckert laura-hergane laura-koerber legendary leigh-holland lgbt lgbtq life lin-wilder lindsay-mccall lindsey-mccall lorna-brown loss lynne-renoir marc-curtis-little margaret-walker maria-luisa-lang marine-life mark-guillerman martin-freznell mathematics matt-nagin medical medical-drama medieval melodrama memoir mermaids michael-a.-greco michael-conlon michael-irwin michael-r-martin middle-east mike-logsdon military mind mitchell-allen mjl-evans monoland monologue motivational myrtle-brooks mystery mythical mythology native-american natural-disaster navy new-jersey new-york nick-dream nigel-c-ferguson nirvana noir non-fction non-fiction norman-aj-berisford northern-ireland novella nutrition observations of oppression otherworld outback pablo-palazuelo paranormal perception persia personal-development pete-k-j peter-learm pharaoh philosophy pirates platoon poetry political political-thriller pop-culture prison pro-life psychology pulp pulp-fiction purgatory puzzle pyram-king quantum-physics race racial rae-louise rainforest reading real-life reality redemption reference regime relationship religion religious remorse revolutionary richard-bunning richard-hacker rick-hall robert-j-saniscalchi robert-kingett role-play roman romance romania ross-libby rural sailing sailors satire sci-fi science science-fiction scientist seafaring self-confidence self-esteem self-help series sexual sexual-harassment sherman-miles short-stories sigal-haber sitcom slavery slice-of-life society sociopath soldier special-forces spiritual sports spy-thriller stage-fright stan-skrabut steve-bassett study superhero supernatural superstition surreal suspense swashbuckling teamwork technology teen teenager terrorists thailand the-sailor the-troubles theodor theological thriller tim time-travel tom-hoffman tomi-farrell torture tough-guy tragedy travel trilogy true-story tv-shows undersea vampire venezuela ventskevitch veteran vietnam vietnam-war vigilante vince-rockston vincent-meis violent volunteer walt-sautter walter-frank war war-memoir weight-loss well-being werewolf western white wildlife will-link yorkshire young-adult
Author Matt McAvoy
Website designed and created by MJV SERVICES, UNITED KINGDOM 2016 - all rights reserved.
*The author has established copyright for all work featured on this website.