Lies Beneath

Lies Beneath

4.1 36
by Anne Greenwood Brown

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Fans of Amanda Hocking's novel, Wake, will dive into this paranormal romance featuring mermaids--the killer kind--and won't come up for air!

Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans and absorb their


Fans of Amanda Hocking's novel, Wake, will dive into this paranormal romance featuring mermaids--the killer kind--and won't come up for air!

Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans and absorb their positive energy. Usually, they select their victims at random, but this time around, the underwater clan chooses its target for a reason: revenge. They want to kill Jason Hancock, the man they blame for their mother's death.

It's going to take a concerted effort to lure the aquaphobic Hancock onto the water. Calder's job is to gain Hancock's trust by getting close to his family. Relying on his irresistible good looks and charm, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter Lily. Easy enough, but Calder screws everything up by falling in love--just as Lily starts to suspect there's more to the monster-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined, and just as the mermaids threaten to take matters into their own hands, forcing Calder to choose between them and the girl he loves.

One thing's for sure: whatever Calder decides, the outcome won't be pretty.

"Riveting! A cold-blooded tale of secrets, revenge, and forbidden love that will leave you terrified to go in the water."--Gretchen McNeil, author of Possess

"Scary and spooky . . . I really enjoyed reading this."--USA Today

“A haunting tale of revenge and romance.”--Justine Magazine

From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—Calder and his murderous mermaid sisters have spent years obsessing over a man named Jason Hancock, who was promised to their family as an infant after their mother saved his father's life. Finally Hancock has moved back to the shores of Lake Superior with his family to take up residence in his old house. Unfortunately, a lifetime spent listening to his father tell horrific yet improbable tales of "monsters" has made him wary of the water. Calder is dispatched, disguised in human form, to lure one of Hancock's daughters to the water instead, to be used as bait. Calder selects the elder daughter, beautiful Lily, and needless to say he quickly becomes distracted from his mission. The romance that ensues feels familiar, with a merman in place of other supernatural creatures du jour. Calder is amazingly handsome and alluring (due to his merman powers), while there is something different about Lily, who seems to have a special connection to the water. As narrator and romantic hero, Calder is problematic, not just because he is a self-confessed serial killer (though he feels bad about it, or at least he has mixed feelings), but also because he is a total wimp, constantly being bossed around by his sisters and whining about the cold water. A few plot twists keep the story going, and a sequel is in the works.—Eliza Langhans, Hatfield Public Library, MA
Children's Literature - Enid Portnoy
From "The Little Mermaid" to other movies, cartoons, myths and fantastic sightings of half-fish, half-human creatures from the deep, Brown weaves a spell which is part reality and part fiction within a modern setting. The fantasy in the book pairs normal eighteen year old teenagers with merpeople of about the same age. They meet each other on the Apostle Islands along the shores of Lake Superior. Three mermaid sisters and their brother, Calder, a merman, have come together to take revenge on the person they believe killed their mother long ago. Calder is to play the role of a boyfriend of the daughter of the man the mermaids wish to lure into the depths of the lake. In the cold waters they will squeeze life out of him, just as they have done to other victims in the past. Readers who fantasize about mermaids and sea legends will undoubtedly identify with the plot, which is filled with romance, murder and mystery. When Calder begins to have doubts about his siblings' sinister plot he realizes that he has grown attached to his new human friends. He analyzes stories being circulated about a monster in the lake. He wonders if he will ever be able to reveal his true identity to people he likes. Is there any place which can promise him safety when his true identity is discovered? At times, the book's plot resembles a watery version of a vampire story, or one about an alien creature from a strange environment. However, to her credit, Brown offers logical explanations to several weird happenings and behaviors, such as how the merfamily morphs back and forth between sea and land. In spite of the phrase repetition "tingling sensations" used all too frequently, teen readers should find enough conflict and action to hold their attention on events. The plot and characters are different from other water adventures and leave readers anxious to see what will occur next. Brown catches the readers' sympathies as her characters try to live their double lives. Albert Einstein once suggested, "Imagination is more important than knowledge." Readers will have to wait for the spring of 2013 to decide if they agree, when Brown promises to release a sequel in which the victim's daughter tells her side of the story, entitled Deep Betrayal.
VOYA - Cheryl Clark
Gorgeous Calder and his beautiful sisters are mermaids, but not the cute Disney kind. They lure humans into the water and kill them in order to feed on their emotions. Now they have their sights set on a different type of prey; they are stalking Jason Hancock to avenge their mother's death. To get close to Jason, Calder has to get close to his daughter. There is only one thing Calder did not count on: falling in love. Once again we have a girl-meets-boy-who-happens-to-be-a-monster love story. Brown distinguishes her tale from other Twilight knock-offs by setting it in the water and using a mythological creature that is less frightening than a vampire—her beasts are mermaids. The story itself holds the reader's interest, and the normally depressive main character, Calder, undergoes a personality shift by the end of the novel. Neither the plot nor the romance, however, is particularly compelling. The book will temporarily satisfy young people's craving for fantasy romance, but it will probably not win any new readers to the genre. Reviewer: Cheryl Clark
Kirkus Reviews
Riding the wave of mermaid paranormalia is a young merman with a mission. For 18-year-old Calder White, family life is a little different. He spends part of his year living in Lake Superior with his three sisters, plotting revenge on Jason Hancock, the son of the man the merpeople hold responsible for killing their mother. Calder plans to lure Jason into the water by using Jason's daughters Lily and Sophie, but he does not count on falling in love with Lily nor on her learning of his true nature. When he is about to spring the trap, Calder finds himself out of his depth and drowning. Narrator Calder isn't particularly self-reflective, which ably conveys his emotional numbness but also makes him rather dull. There's little that's engaging about Brown's treatment of the mermaid mythology, the characters or the plot, making it an underwater retread of stories about sparkly creatures and dangerous love. Initially borrowing from Native American tales, Brown dumps the legends quickly into the inky depths. Astute readers will see the entire plot arc from the first few pages, which makes Calder and Lily's romance feel forced from the beginning. About as exciting as a handful of chum. (Paranormal romance. 12 & up)

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Random House Children's Books
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Read an Excerpt



I hadn’t killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that. Sure, I’d wanted to, but too many suspicious drownings got people talking. Fearful towns- people were the last thing I needed. Besides, I was getting a sick thrill out of denying my body what it craved. Self-­control was my latest obsession. I doubted my sisters could say the same thing.

Rising through the Caribbean waters, I walked my fingers up the bank of dead coral until I found the pattern of cracks I was looking for. I followed it to the surface, coming up at the spot where I’d stashed my pile of human clothes. My cell phone was ringing somewhere in the pile. Maris, I thought, gritting my teeth. I’d lost count of how many times she’d called today. I’d let all her attempts go to voice mail.

A splashing sound pulled my attention from my sister’s ringtone, and I jerked around to face the ocean. An easy hundred yards away, a girl lay on an inflatable raft. A yellow light outlined her body. She wasn’t ripe yet. Maybe, if I waited, the yellow light would grow into something more brilliant—­more satisfying—­more worth breaking my hard-­won self-­control over.

Against my will, the memory of my last kill teased the corners of my brain. It tempted me, mocked me for ever thinking I could rise above my nature. My fingers twitched at the months-­old memory: the grabbing, the diving, the guise of human legs giving way to tail and fin, the tingling sensation heating my core as I pinned my prey to the ocean floor, absorbing that intoxicating light, drawing the brilliant emotion out of her body until I felt almost . . .

Oh, what the hell.

But before I dove after the unsuspecting girl, my cell went off again. For a second I considered chucking it into the ocean; it was the disposable kind, after all. But that was a little extreme. Even for me. I let it go to voice mail. I mean, it wasn’t like I didn’t know why Maris was calling. The old, familiar pull was back. That pull—­somewhere behind my rib cage, between my heart and my lungs—­that told me it was almost time to leave Bahamian warmth and return to my family in the cold, bleak waters of Lake Superior. It was time to migrate.

A shiver rippled down my arms. Get a grip, Calder, I told myself. Ignore it. You don’t have to leave quite yet. I could hear the memory of my mother’s voice telling me the same thing, just as she had before my first migration. Focus, son, she’d said, rumpling my curly hair. Timing is everything.

Thirty years might have passed, but the loss of my mother still gripped my stomach. It hurt to remember. And the great lake only made the memories more painful. No, there was no good reason to go back to the States. Except that I had no choice.

The urge to migrate was irresistible. Far more powerful than the urge to kill. With each rise and fall of the moon, with each turn of the tide, it grew more impossible to ignore. Experience told me there were only a few more weeks before I had to rejoin my sisters. By the end of May, I’d be shooting through the water on a missile’s course. God help anyone who got in my way.

My cell went off again. With a resigned curse, I pulled myself halfway out of the water and dug through my clothes until I found it and hit Send.

“Nice of you to take my call,” Maris said.

“What do you want?”

“It’s time. Get home. Now.” Her voice, originally sarcastic, now rang with her usual fanaticism. I could hear my other sisters, Pavati and Tallulah, in the background, echoing her enthusiasm.

“Why now?” I asked, my voice flat. “It’s still April.”

“Why are you being such a pain?”

“It’s nothing.” There was a long pause on the other end. I closed my eyes and waited for her to figure it out. It didn’t take more than a few seconds.

“How long?”

“Five months.”

“Damn it, Calder, why do you always have to be such a masochist? God, you must be a mess.”

“I’m pacing myself. Mind your own business, Maris.” There was no point in trying to explain my abstinence to her. I could barely explain it to myself. I watched mournfully as the yellow-­lit raft girl paddled safely toward shore.

“Your mental health is my business. Do you think you could take better care of it? One kill, Calder. Just one. It would make you feel so much better.”

“I’m. Fine,” I spit through my teeth.

“You’re an ass, but that’s beside the point. I’ve got something to improve your mood.”

I rolled my eyes and waited for her to give it a shot. Good luck, I thought.

“We’ve found Jason Hancock.”

My heart lurched at the sound of the name, but I kept quiet rather than give in to her assurance. I’d heard this all before. My silence prompted something on the other end. Panic? Tallulah’s voice was now ringing through the receiver, a fluid stream of words almost too quick for me to catch.

I let my gaze drift up to the thin lace of clouds above me. My sisters sounded sure of themselves. Perhaps this time they’d gotten it right. “Fine. I’ll start off tomorrow.”

“No,” Maris said. “There’s no time for you to swim. Take a plane.”

She hung up before I could protest.

From the Hardcover edition.

Meet the Author

ANNE GREENWOOD BROWN grew up sailing the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior, leaning over the rail and wondering, with a lake that big, that ancient, what amazing thing might flash by. Now she knows. Lies Beneath is her first novel.

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Lies Beneath (Lib)(CD) 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
UrbanGirlReview More than 1 year ago
First off, if you're looking for a sweet cheerful mermaid tale, this is not it!  What it is though, is a suspenseful, dark tale, entwined in turmoil with a little revenge sprinkled on top.  It's like comparing The Little Mermaid to Jaws.     I couldn't put Lies Beneath down until the very last page.  It was a thrill ride from start to finish and Calder's voice was a refreshing take on the original fairy tale.  I liked the mysterious parts of the story; the missing details you have to piece together.    At first Lily was sensible about Calder in that she directly confessed to him that he was making her nervous.  But as soon as Calder read her poetry, Lily swooned and completely tossed out her common sense.  This is my only criticism of the book.   I'm not a "horror story" kind of gal, so when I looked at the cover of a girl, blood, and water, my initial reaction was of a scary horror story.  But, after reading the jacket description, it was clear it was not a thriller.  For those reasons, I'm not a fan of the cover.    The whole tale was striking and thought-provoking.  I extremely enjoyed Lies Beneath with the cute romance between Calder and Lily, the sinister plot, and the triumphant ending of the book. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you are looking for a quick read to quench a paranormal romance thirst, this is it!
eternalised More than 1 year ago
The book had an interesting premise, but fell flat. Calder turns out to be the same stalker-type we encounter in dozens of other YA books. There’s insta-love, Calder is stuck-up, too sure of himself, and overall, not a likeable character to read about. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
RebeccaEnzor More than 1 year ago
The single best part about this book are the predatory mermaids. I've read a lot of mermaid books lately, and none of them have been quite so dark as this one - and I loved the dark bits. The twist at the end was pretty good, although I could definitely see most of it coming, but the middle was flat. While I know Calder isn't really supposed to feel much emotion, I would have liked to feel the pull between his bond to his sisters and his budding relationship with Lily more. I'd definitely read the sequel if it was on sale, but I wish I hadn't paid $9 for this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Andrea17 More than 1 year ago
This is not the first mermaid book I've read, but this is the first mermaid book where they aren't singing on rocks and rescuing prince's from sunken ships. These mermaids are dangerous. They are murders. Jealous creatures that drown their victims when they are at their peek of happiness so they can absorb said happiness into themselves. Fun bunch, right? Calder and his sisters have been searching for Jason Hancock for decades. He is responsible for the death of their mother and they are desperate for revenge. When they finally find him and his family, they devise a plan to get Hancock out into the water once Calder gets close to one of his daughters, either Lily or Sophie. Originally planning to use Sophie, Calder changes his mind to Lily after seeing the bond between her and Hancock. Anne is a talented writer using both clear descriptions and engrossing main characters. I wish the secondary characters had a bit more depth to them as they all seemed a bit flat and, for some of them, I didn't really see their importance. They were just kind of . . . there. The romance doesn't become a factor until closer to the end of the novel. What I enjoy about this romance is that Lily doesn't immediately fall for Calder. She knows there is something off about him and avoids him, trusting her gut and not falling for the creepy stalker. It takes him a while to gain her trust, even after he proves it to an exceptional degree. Lies Beneath is dark. These mermaids are out for revenge, for blood, and their own personal brand of justice. Anne's take on mermaid mythology is wonderfully different. She explains that ever gnawing question of just how mercreatures are born, gives them the ability to walk on land while giving them the need to be in water, and gives them the perfect mix of beauty and danger.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very good and very unique!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dazzlamb More than 1 year ago
Calder and his sisters are on a mission. Avenge their mother and kill the man who was responsible for her death so many years ago. Jason Hancock is afraid of the sea, so isn't it a bitter fate that the evil mermaids are set out to drown him? To find access to him and gain his trust Calder is delegated to seduce Hancock's daughter Lily. Who would've thought they'd fall in love? LIES BENEATH is told from Calder's point of view. A male mermaid narrator, what a novelty! He can be calculating and unforgiving when thoughts of revenge crowd his mind, but also very honest and exposed when he's talking about his feelings for Lily. Their love story follows an often-used scheme, seducing the girl to get what you want, falling in love with her and causing a major conflict when she finds out about your ulterior motives. But of course their romance can't be gerneralized like that. Lily and Calder have their very own touches to add and are a unique couple together. We are equipped with a map showing the various places of interest to the plot, it's a welcome help to navigate our story more easily. Set in Wisconsin, and exploring Lake Superior LIES BENEATH has a very maritime and adventurous feel to it. Just grab a copy and you will be intrigued from the first sentence: „ I hadn't killed anyone all winter, and I have to say I felt pretty good about that.“ ¿ p. 1 5/5 ***** LIES BENEATH – What a killer of a YA mermaid story debut! Grab your floaties, it's getting dangerously good! With its mermaid legends, cold-blooded killings and a tempestuous romance, LIES BENEATH was a highlight of my 2012 summer reading list. Calder and his sisters are set out to kill. They are violent and pretty feersome as it is, but revenge as their drive? Whew! I'm already looking forward to pick up the second book, hoping it's just as chilling and murderous a mermaid tale as LIEST BENEATH.
RandomAsADD More than 1 year ago
I really, really enjoyed this book. I have to say, the synopsis and the cover made me not want to read it so it's been on my shelf for a while - but it was great. Not your average mermaid book that's for sure. I honestly wasn't expecting to like it as much as I did. Fans of Amanda Hocking's "Watersong" series will really enjoy this! Just bought the sequel - let's hope it's just as good!
Brooke-The-Cover-Contessa More than 1 year ago
AH-MAE-ZING! Started and finished this TODAY! I was not expecting to like this book as much as I did! I actually had no idea what to expect. I met this author at a huge book signing last year and purchased the book 1) because I LOVE the cover and 2) because I was trying to be supportive of the authors at the event! Typically, I don't read the blurb for books, so I wasn't sure what this book was about, except that it had to do with mermaids. I was completely surprised by the POV, the story and most of all the fact that it took me very little time to read through it. I didn't want to put it down! Blurb from Goodreads: Calder White lives in the cold, clear waters of Lake Superior, the only brother in a family of murderous mermaids. To survive, Calder and his sisters prey on humans and absorb their positive energy. Usually, they select their victims at random, but this time around, the underwater clan chooses its target for a reason: revenge. They want to kill Jason Hancock, the man they blame for their mother's death. It's going to take a concerted effort to lure the aquaphobic Hancock onto the water. Calder's job is to gain Hancock's trust by getting close to his family. Relying on his irresistible good looks and charm, Calder sets out to seduce Hancock's daughter Lily. Easy enough, but Calder screws everything up by falling in love--just as Lily starts to suspect there's more to the monster-in-the-lake legends than she ever imagined, and just as the mermaids threaten to take matters into their own hands, forcing Calder to choose between them and the girl he loves. One thing's for sure: whatever Calder decides, the outcome won't be pretty. First, as I said, I love this cover. It's just totally beautiful. I love the colors and the total simplicity of what it says. It really drew me into wanting to read it. Next, a YA book from the male POV? I was totally surprised by this. I have not read many YA books from the male POV at all. So I wasn't sure what to expect from this, to be honest, but I really loved it. And the author handled it very well. Calder is this handsome, hard to resist 18 year old guy who easily draws people in. The fact that he's a mermaid helps, of course. He's smooth and sexy, tan, with perfect hair and the greatest green eyes. But he's different from his family, always has been. He doesn't want to be this monster of prey that mer-people are known to be. But it's in his nature and he finds it really hard to resist. I really fell for him, despite being undecided as to whether or not he's a good guy. He's so torn, I like it. Teen angst from a boy! Lily is an awesome heroine. She's very strong, and strong minded. She doesn't come off as the innocent, easily swayed type, which I really like. She's smart and sassy and doesn't whine in any way. Of course we see her through Calder's eyes and I think he's as surprised by her as she is by him. And it's nice that there is no "insta-love" between her and Calder, we watch it grow and blossom throughout the story. Calder's sisters were a force to be reckoned with. Like Calder they are beautiful and easily get what they want. But make no mistake, they area deadly. Mermaids are not at all the "Little Mermaid" from the Disney movies, Think more Pirate's of the Caribbean, scary stuff!  This book was much darker than what I expected. I guess not having read any mermaid stories, my mind was not sure what to expect. But I wasn't expecting all the talk of death and stealing people's emotions. I guess my mind was stuck on the Disney aspect of mermaids. But they are predatory and calculating. And they will manipulate anyone and anything that they need to to get their way. It blew me away. I found it hard to put this one down. The plot line was well laid out and the character development was spot on. The author easily overlapped the world of the mermaids with those of the humans. It was flawlessly perfected. Brown has written a book that is filled with bite. Brown wastes no time in showing the true nature of mer-people and running with it to create a story that is original and keeps you captivated from beginning to end. And the twists were unexpected. Fans of paranormal romance and mermaids will truly be engrossed in this story. Well done! 5/5 stars from me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ImaginaryReads More than 1 year ago
I picked up this book because of the unique twist on merpeople. Dark, murderous merpeople who use their charms to take lives and who are out for revenge? I was intrigued. Rather than the happy mermaids of recent legend, such as the Little Mermaid, the merpeople are miserable creatures who feed on the happiness of humans. It would appear that each race is jealous of the other, and one for incorrect myths. Lies Beneath was too focused on the revenge angle for my liking. It was a nice touch and a catalyst for all the events that happen in the novel. However, I left the book not having gotten to know any of the characters except for Calder and the barest of his thoughts about the other characters. Calder spends most of his time spying on the Hancock family and away from his sisters, plotting how to lure Jason Hancock onto the water so that his sisters can have their revenge and he can win his independence from his family. Calder is an interesting character. I respect his self-restraint when it comes to killing people, though his motives for doing so remain unclear, and he respects life. Although Maris is the head of their family, Calder doesn't blindly follow orders. The other character motives are even harder to discern. At first, I thought that Lily was rebellious because of her tattoo; now, I don't know what kind of person she is except that she's observant and that she likes Victorian poetry. The rest of her family seem to be mere pawns in the game of revenge. They seems like nice people, but I didn't get to know them at all. The same happens with Jake. He plays a pivotal part in the book, but his actions contradict each other and I don't know what's his game. He warns people about the creatures in the lake, yet he has a special interest in them. Overall, this didn't turn out to be the read for me, and I won't be reading book two.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
EverAfterEsther More than 1 year ago
I've been a fan of mermaids for years, but my favourites have typically been of the red-headed, overly curious, rebellious type. So when I picked up Lies Beneath only to encounter a cold-blooded killer merman, I started off a little bit hesitant about the book. I wasn't expecting Anne to entrance me with this touching story, and to weave an intricate tale with some ugly truth bared for the whole world to see - and yet still find a way to identify with a character I never thought I'd relate to. That's so rare in fiction, and even rarer in real life, that it was a real treat to read about in Lies Beneath. Reasons to Read: 1.These aren't the mermaids most of us are familiar with...: (Somewhat unfortunately) Ariel doesn't make an appearance. (Props to Anne for mentioning her though!) The merpeople in Lies Beneath are vicious killers. At first, I thought I wouldn't be able to identify with them because of this and was afraid I wouldn't feel a connection with the book as a result. But instead I found it fascinating to see that they had their limits - there were times when they drew the line and stood their ground and fought against what we assumed to be their nature. This was easily the mos tinteresting aspect of the book, because we get to see such a huge change and we're led to ask a lot of questions regarding nature vs nurture. 2.A feisty, strong love interest: I really didn't think I'd like Lily at first, but she grew on me SO quickly. I loved that she could dish it all back at Calder, and wasn't weak or whiny or oblivious. She totally keeps Calder on his toes all the time, refuses to back down, and makes some EXTREMELY selfless decisions. 3.Unpredictable twists & surprises: There was plenty of mysterious mythology and legends to hint at what was going on, but just enough to keep me guessing. And there were some truly unexpected turn of events, which were cleverly hidden from the reader (and for good reason). My only real complaint was that I did feel like a few too many of the issues were fairly neatly wrapped up; and while that's mostly a good thing, I still like a little bit of realism in my books. It isn't that everything turned out perfectly, but it was a little too convenient for my taste. And it admittedly did take me a little while to get used to reading from the perspective of a sea "monster" so used to killing. That can be a little bit hard to swallow at certain times. But this was one beautifully written and thought out story that I easily devoured. Exaclty the kind of merpeople book I like to read (and I'm picky about them, too). E-galley received from publisher via Net Galley for my honest review; no other compensation was received.
jwitt33 More than 1 year ago
This is not your Disney merpeople!! Awesome! That's really all I can say about this book - Awesome! Unfortunately, that's not really enough words to write a review so I'll try to expand on that a little bit. First off, I LOVE stories about mermaids! Most of them are about nice, friendly, beautiful mermaids who go out of their way to help humans, but this one sets itself apart from the others from the get go. As Calder (the male narrator, which I also loved) explains it, "She seriously did not get this at all. She obviously had some Disney version of mermaids in her head. I wondered how she'd respond when I told her the truth. That we were murderers, monsters, fiends. That I'd lured her out here to kill her. That I was doing everything within my power to fight against nature." Merpeople can't produce their own emotions apparently, so to prevent them from going into a deep depression, they "steal" the good emotions from humans, killing them in the process so they can "wring out" every last drop of happiness! I really love that the author took a much darker look at merpeople and made them predators. It really worked for this story and I was hooked almost from the beginning. I have to admit that Calder and his three sisters, Maris, Pavati and Tallulah, weren't really likable at the start of the book, but that made Calder's transformation and growth stand out even more. There was definite character development there! I also thought the pacing was great, and there were just the right number of action scenes vs. emotional ones. In summary, I really enjoyed this book and find it very hard to believe that this is a debut novel, but it is! I will definitely be reading more from Anne Greenwood Brown in the future, and can't wait to read Lies Beneath #2 to find out what happens with Lily and Calder :)
Amber_Elise More than 1 year ago
REVIEW BASED ON ARC! What began as a mediocre read quickly turned into a fast paced story in which the line between good and evil are very easily blurred. Calder White is a mermaid, but not like the Little Mermaid. He drowns humans for the fleeting moment of experiencing their happiness. When his sisters relay news that they've finally found the son of the man who killed their mother, Calder is too happy to quickly kill him so that he can carry on his merry little way-away from his sisters. Except Lily happens and killing her father gets a lot more complicated. To be completely honest, I did not think that I was going to enjoy this book. After 86 pages I set aside the book to tackle other books on my TBR list but I eventually came back. And something happened. Maybe my mindset changed or the book picked up but I was turning pages quick as ever! I loved the idea of murderous mermaids a la mythical sirens and Calder was as heartless as they come. The characters were very interesting especially Calder's three sisters led by the ever-planning Maris. If there was an award for the Most Dysfunctional Mermaid Family I'm pretty sure the White's would have no competition. Maris is just so downright evil she makes Calder seem tame. Overall, Lily Hancock, the love interest, was an interesting and stable character but I found the story involving Calder and his family more appealing. The writing was very strong as well. What made this novel so unique is that it is told from a male perspective which was a something I personally don't come across too often in the young adult genre. In my opinion, the book starting off very rushed and unsure of itself (ie the sisters initial plot to get revenge on the Hancocks) but once it decided on a plot, I really enjoyed it. Lies Beneath is a great introductory novel and I cannot wait to find out more about Calder and his blooming love with Lily. With great characters and a revenge-driven plot for revenge, Lies Beneath will makes waves (yes I just did that) this summer!
Tiffany-St-James More than 1 year ago
I loved this book so much I read it in a day. Well, I actually do that with all my books..... but that's beside the point. I only wish the sequel was going to be Lily's point of veiw on what happened. You know, in this book. It would be interesting to see if Lily really did like Calder when he first tried. And, because I love Harry Potter, I must say that I wish Rowling would do a book on the Marauder's era. It would have been great! I also agree with an anonymous reveiwer that it did seem really close to Twilight. I mean, supernatural creatures who say they are monsters, A girl who disagrees with that statement, and 'forbidden love'. Also, the part about Talullah was amazing. I knew it from the beginning! And, for those who would actually take the time to read this reveiw, my pen name comes from Gallagher Girls by Ally Carter. Read it. I command you! Or I'll use hypnosis! *insert evil laughter here*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was exceptional! Although the sequence of the events are eerily simular to that of Twilight, I think that the the characters we're their own and this is by far the best mermaid YA book I have read in a while. Great character development and good writting -- 5 stars all the way :)
Falln2books More than 1 year ago
I have never read a mermaid book before, and I never thought I'd want to. However, this story sounded too interesting to pass up, and I'm glad I made the decision to give mermaids a try. Lies Beneath completely submerges you in mermaid life, and it's a lot darker than one might imagine. These mermaids aren't from the Disney cartoon movies. They are serial killers, and they hold a grudge. Lies Beneath is told from Calder's POV, and it was a bit hard for me to adjust to that, being a female and all. Once I got into the story, though, I barely noticed the gender of the narrator. A few things that bugged me were the fact that the everyone called people by their first and last names 99% of the time. Seriously, no one talks like that. It got on my nerves and pulled me out of the story at times. Another thing that bothered me was the fact that Calder called Victorian Era poets "the Victorians," like these authors were in some bad indie rock band or something. Other than that, though, the book was wonderful. It took Calder awhile to grow on me, but once he did, I could definitely sympathize with his character. He wasn't created to be a killer, and he didn't want the life he'd been given. I felt bad for him in that aspect. He also had a good heart, and always tried to do the right thing. He did the best he could with the lot he'd been given, and I couldn't fault him for the mistakes he made. I never really related to him, but I did sympathize with him. I cared what happened to him and wanted to finish his story. Lily was a very brave character, and I enjoyed learning about her through Calder's eyes. I wish I could have known what she was thinking, though. She made some strange, and sometimes not-too-bright, decisions, and I would have liked to have known what motivated her actions. I do understand why this book was told from Calder's POV, though, and the story wouldn't have been complete had it not been from his perspective. I wish Brown had switched back and forth or something, but it may not have had the same effect. In this aspect, I'm leaving it at the author knows best. If there is a sequel, maybe we can get to know how Lily's mind works. The other characters in this story weren't incredibly well-developed, but they definitely weren't stereotypes, which was a relief. Also, the book wasn't set in a high school, and that made for a nice change. I didn't realize how tired I was about reading books set in high schools until I read one that wasn't set in a school. I know high schools are part of daily life for teens, but sometimes, a change of scenery is nice. The story itself is a bit slow moving at first, but by the middle, it's impossible to put the book down. I had the basic idea figured out, but I wasn't sure how it'd play out. Brown also rewarded me with plenty of surprises along the way to keep me interested. I wasn't bored at all while reading this book. Brown's writing, for the most part, is very good and believable. The story has a nice flow to it, and the pacing was pretty spot on. The ending wrapped everything up nicely, but managed to leave the possibility open for a sequel, should the author and publisher so choose to produce one. Over all, I would recommend this book to people who love mermaid tales and those who are new to the genre, like I am. I think most people would enjoy this story. So if you're looking for something different in the YA genre, check out Lies Beneath. You won't regret it.
HardcoverLifeBlog More than 1 year ago
Lies Beneath is the first mermaid Young Adult novel I’ve ever read. Mermaids seem to be a popular creature feature lately, especially in the summer, and it’s not hard to understand why. Unfortunately, this rendition of a mermaid tale really wasn’t for me. Into the story: Calder is a merman who is mentally dragged, every year, to Lake Superior where he and his three sisters are from. The merfamily, since their mother died, have been on a mission to kill the man who they believe is responsible for their mother’s death. Calder and his sisters have finally found the man and have learned he is moving near Lake Superior after having avoided water his entire life. The goal: Calder needs to seduce his intended victims daughter into order to get to his real target. The biology of merpeople in Lies Beneath: 1. Beautiful (duh). 2. Can transform into humans but need to be near water a lot or they dry out. 3. Have an impulsion to kill in order to steal the positive emotions of their victims. 4. Can be born mermaid or made into one. 5. Don’t have any positive emotions themselves. 6. Merman don’t reproduce. Babies are made with humans and have to live with human father for one year than returned to mother. I love the idea of murderous mermaids and that opening line is killer! Unfortunately, that's really the extent of things I liked about this book. The problems I had with this novel definitely outweigh anything I liked about it. First, the whole biology of the mermaids made no sense and I felt it wasn’t very thought out or explained very well. For all I know it was well thought out but I was so confused through most of it because of the lack of explanation. Second the motivations of the characters were hard to figure out. I had no idea why Calder and his sisters had this crazy need to kill his man. It felt like a compulsion merpeople have but they explained that it was just for revenge. Also, I thought that since mermaids couldn’t have any positive emotions than the personalities of the characters were off. Calder and his sisters definitely felt moments of happiness without having to kill anything. I just felt like the rules of merpeople were there to move the story forward but weren’t actually incorporated into what the characters were like. I can deal with some major plot holes if I really like the male character ( for example Patch in Hush, Hush) but Calder wasn’t redeemable. The Ohhh and Ahhhh factor missing with Calder is just one. HE IS A COLD BLOODED KILLER! These women that rationalize these male characters who kill people are beyond me. No matter how many times they say they want to kill someone near you or you, you run into their arms like that’s the dreamiest thing you’ve ever heard. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the girl reforming the bad boy. But girl reforming the serial killer? Not my taste. I did like Calder and his love interests interactions but it was insta-love and I just couldn't feel anything for them or any of the other characters. OVERALL: It has a great open line and an interesting premise but really fell short in characterization and plot for me ---3.5 out of 10.
FeatheredQuillBookReviews More than 1 year ago
Readers will be thrilled with this new YA because the experience they ‘think’ they’ll receive is completely wrong. Most people think of mermaids as Disney animated characters that became popular ‘under the sea.’ But from the opening quote of this very cool novel, readers will be hooked and creeped out all at the same time. This is the story of Calder White, a boy who can change into a merman when he enters the water. Calder didn’t start out life as a merman; he was changed when he was a baby and fell out of a boat on Lake Superior. Having three sisters who actually began their lives as mermaids is a little difficult for Calder who still has some of his morality intact, whereas his siblings are stone cold killers. Luring people to them with their looks and charm, they take their prey into the depths of the lake and ‘drain’ them of their emotions (i.e.: excitement, happiness, joy, etc.) Any positive emotion is absorbed into these creatures which gives them a brief moment of happiness that cancels out the painful emptiness in their minds. Calder, who is spending time in the Caribbean, is called back home by his sisters. They believe that they’ve found the son of Jason Hancock, a man who they think killed their mother. The sisters make a diabolical plan; they want Calder to lure Hancock’s daughter, Lily, into their clutches so they can get to her father and extract their revenge. Calder has never met a woman he couldn’t make fall in love with him at first sight, but he soon realizes that he’s met his match in Lily. She’s not a pushover and does not fall for his fatal charms, but she does notice that he and his family are more than a little strange. Lily begins to suspect that that there’s something dark going on in the neighborhood and begins an investigation that brings fear very, very close to home. So well-written, the characters are beyond surprising and the author has a true gift of being able to lure readers in with her haunting scenes. Quill Says: Chock full of subtle surprises, readers who live near large lakes may just move to the desert after they’ve devoured this one!
chapterxchapter More than 1 year ago
I knew absolutely nothing when I started reading Lies Beneath. I didn’t have time when I began reading it to check it out on Goodreads for ratings or a brief synopsis, the only thing that gave the theme of the novel away was the cover of a mermaid with bloodied water above/behind her. That alone caught my interest and right off the bat I assumed that the story would be in the point of view of a female main character—I was surprised not only by the fact that Lies Beneath began with an opening paragraph that already had me interested, but by the fact that it also was in the POV of a teenage guy. Which I was absolutely cool with, especially since he is a merman who feels happiness from murdering humans, has three twisted sisters and plans on murdering a man out of vengeance for his family of mer-people. Considering that as of late, there have been tons of mermaid novels being released, I was wondering if Lies Beneath would be able to catch my eye and make me see any differences that would make the story interesting. I’m so very happy to say that Lies Beneath was so different. I mean, sure there have been serial killer mermaids before—but I like to think of Lies Beneath as Hush, Hush with mermaids. The way that Brown wrote the novel gave it that Hush, Hush feel and of course, the main character Calder acted in a way that had me thinking (and I quote!): “Oh my gosh, he’s just like Patch but with fins!”. Indeed I said that. Anyways, back to the review! The story kept up a consistent pace and never stopped holding my interest. The fact that Calder was constantly stalking Lily Hancock because of her father Jason Hancock had me wondering what would happen next especially since his relationship with her that was supposed to be strictly emotionless ended up growing into something else entirely. The funny thing with Lies Beneath is that I couldn’t stop reading. Actually. I didn’t want to stop reading. I wanted to know what would happen next because of the way Brown wrote it with constant cliff-hangers that left me dying to know what happens next. The romance portion of the novel was cute, especially since Lily was a character that I think we rarely see in YA. She wasn’t afraid to get herself involved with the dangerous world of the mermaids, faced Calder’s sisters and got all cute with him without seeming all that afraid of the consequences that came with them being together. (Can you say “awww”?). I would recommend Lies Beneath to fans of mermaid lore, Becca Fitzpatrick`s Hush, Hush and readers who want to get completely absorbed in a novel. Lies Beneath was breathtaking.
VeraciousRose More than 1 year ago
Calder White, our 18 year old protagonist, is a merman. He and his three sisters sustain themselves in the cold Lake Superior waters by absorbing the positive emotions of humans. Rarely do their victims survive. It's not a pretty way to live, but unlike his sisters, Calder doesn't enjoy killing and fights against his instincts. Given the choice, Calder would break all family ties and go off on his own. When Jason Hancock, who the sisters blame for their mother's death, moves back to town, Calder is given a choice - help his sisters bring this man to justice or be tied to them forever. The plan is to use one of Jason Hancock's daughters for bait ... I love Calder. He is such a conflicted soul, and he wants to be good and decent, but he just doesn't feel that's his nature. He's supposed to be a killer and he fights it so hard, and I love him for that. And I love Lily Hancock just as much - she's smart and courageous and feisty and she keeps Calder on his toes/fins, depending on whether he's dry or wet. Anne Greenwood Brown has created a mesmerizing world. The pacing is fast, the tension tight, the dialogue flows seamlessly, the characters and their relationships are complex, and there's a brilliant plot twist at the end!! This is an excellent addition to library reading lists for ages 12+, although this is one I want my own copy of so I can reread it! And no, I won't be swimming in lakes any time soon. But I will be holding my breath waiting for the sequel, DEEP BETRAYAL!