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by Imogen Hermes Gowar
Unfortunately this story is written in present tense and like most books that are written this way, the prose feels stilted and doesn't flow well, plus the tenses get confused when referring to something that happened in the story's past. It's a shame as it had the potential to be really good. People who don't mind reading in present tense may enjoy it more than I was able to. I also had the impression from the description that it would be about a live mermaid rather than an artefact, but I won't blame the author for my expectations being other than what the story was really about.
A merchant, Jonah Hancock, learns that his agent has sold his ship to buy a mermaid. His ship! His means of livelihood!
He is given no choice but to begin a new career in exhibiting what would be considered the body of a freak of nature. It isn't what he wants to do, but it will take him into some unexpected adventures.
The characters were depicted well in this and the plot had some interesting twists and turns, but I found it hard going because of the present tense writing. It just doesn't work for me and I know a lot of other people are the same, so why do recent writers keep doing it? Anyway, I'm giving it 3 stars because I think this author could write well and the plot did have some interesting aspects.