Of Neptune by Anna Banks

Of Neptune by Anna BanksEmma and Galen have decided to get some much needed alone time by taking a road trip. Emma’s grandfather pushes them in the direction of a small town called Neptune, which turns out to be something completely unexpected. In Neptune, Syrena live in harmony with humans and Half-Breeds. Emma begins to realize that she may have another choice for her future and when a Half-Breed named Reed begins to pay her extra attention, Galen is worried that Emma may decide to stay in Neptune forever.

The first book in this series was really good–it was one of the first mermaid YA books I’ve read and it seemed really original and had a great plot. The second book fell pretty flat in my opinion and I nearly gave up on the series after that. However, because I feel compelled to always finish a series (the exception being Lauren Kate’s Fallen series, ugh), I decided that I had to read Of Neptune. I was hoping that it would revive the trilogy for me, but unfortunately it was more like the second book than the first.

The romance between Emma and Galen seemed to die after the first book. I felt like I had little interest in their love story anymore because there didn’t really even seem to be one. Their love story, along with much of the plot of this book, seemed contrived. Emma and Galen seem like they keep trying to force their relationship to be something it’s not, and by going on a road trip it seemed like they were trying to get everything back on track. However, when they find Neptune and realize they both have radically differing opinions on the small town, it just drags them further apart.

Emma and Galen are both extreme in their personalities–Emma is super trusting and so ridiculously naive that sometimes you just want to slap her, and Galen is super overprotective and sometimes channels Edward Cullen. So when they meet a Half-Breed named Reed who invites them back to their town, Galen automatically hates him just because he so much as glances at Emma, and Emma automatically trusts him and agrees to go with him with or without Galen, just because he is a Half-Breed like herself. The guy could still be a murdering psychopath! Who just runs off with someone they meet in the woods? So naturally, Reed creates a rift between Emma and Galen because he obviously has the hots for Emma, which annoys Galen. And what’s even more annoying is that Emma pretends to be unaware of it, and even when Reed is blatant about it she just shrugs it off and ignores it.

The bigger conflict in this book is that technically a town like Neptune where humans and Syrena live together and where Half-Breeds exist at all is illegal by Syrena rules, and since Galen is a Triton royal, he is under obligation to tell his brother, the king. The problem is that Emma loves the town and loves the idea of mermaids and humans living together, so Galen and Emma soon find themselves in the middle of a political struggle. This leads to the even bigger issue surrounding their relationship: they have no idea what they will do when they’re finally mated–will Galen live on land with Emma or will Emma live in the ocean with Galen?

Overall, Of Neptune was kind of a blah ending to the trilogy. Everything was basically wrapped up plot-wise, but much of the book felt contrived and Emma just got more annoying as the series progressed.

Of Neptune was released on May 13, 2014 and is the final book in The Syrena Legacy.

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Of Triton by Anna Banks

Of Triton by Anna BanksWARNING: SPOILERS FOR OF POSEIDON AHEAD

Emma has just discovered that not only is she a Half-Breed, but her mother is a long lost mermaid princess. Emma herself is having trouble coming to terms with her identity because she feels torn between the human world and the world of the Syrena where Galen, the boy she loves, is a prince. When her mother reveals herself to the Syrena world, it nearly starts a war between the two kingdoms of Triton and Poseidon, and forces Emma to figure out where exactly she belongs.

I am a huge mermaid fan, and I’ve been saying forever that there need to be MORE MERMAIDS!! There haven’t been many mermaid stories until recently, and I’m glad to see the increase in the appearance of mermaids in young adult literature. However, while I really loved Of Poseidon, I’m afraid Of TritonĀ really didn’t do it for me.

In the first book it seemed like there were so many sparks between Emma and Galen so I was really excited to see where the second book would take them. However, in the second book it seemed like there were no sparks at all! There were very few times in the book where Emma and Galen were actually together but when they were it was like there was absolutely no chemistry. I found myself really bored with their relationship overall, and I feel like they didn’t really even grow as a couple throughout this book.

Emma herself seemed to be more childish in this book and weirdly kept calling herself out on her own immaturity. I felt like I liked her a lot better in the previous book. The narration of the story also bothered me a bit–Emma’s narration is told in first person and Galen’s is told in third person, which is just a really strange switch that didn’t really make sense to me.

The overall plot was just so-so in my opinion. I found it hard to get through this book and it definitely took me a lot longer to read than I had expected. I think the lack of sparks between the characters and the somewhat blahness of the plot made it hard for this book to really hold my interest.

Overall, Of Triton was a disappointing sequel to Of Poseidon. The sparks have died and the plot made this just seem like a filler book that is leading up to a (hopefully) more exciting third book.

Of Triton was released on May 28, 2013 and is the second book in the Of Poseidon series. The third book, Of Neptune, is expected to be released in 2014.