Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Lost Voices by Sarah Porter

Title/Author: Lost Voices (Lost Voices #1) by Sarah Porter
Publisher/Date published: Harcourt Books, July 4th 2011
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: "What happens to the girls nobody sees — the ones who are ignored, mistreated, hidden away? The girls nobody hears when they cry for help?
Fourteen-year-old Luce is one of those lost girls. After her father vanishes in a storm at sea, she is stuck in a grim, gray Alaskan fishing village with her alcoholic uncle. When her uncle crosses an unspeakable line, Luce reaches the depths of despair. Abandoned on the cliffs near her home, she expects to die when she tumbles to the icy, churning waves below. Instead, she undergoes an astonishing transformation and becomes a mermaid.
A tribe of mermaids finds Luce and welcomes her in — all of them, like her, lost girls who surrendered their humanity in the darkest moments of their lives. The mermaids are beautiful, free, and ageless, and Luce is thrilled with her new life until she discovers the catch: they feel an uncontrollable desire to drown seafarers, using their enchanted voices to lure ships into the rocks.
Luce’s own talent at singing captures the attention of the tribe’s queen, the fierce and elegant Catarina, and Luce soon finds herself pressured to join in committing mass murder. Luce’s struggle to retain her inner humanity puts her at odds with her friends; even worse, Catarina seems to regard Luce as a potential rival. But the appearance of a devious new mermaid brings a real threat to Catarina’s leadership and endangers the very existence of the tribe. Can Luce find the courage to challenge the newcomer, even at the risk of becoming rejected and alone once again?"

I think it was lucky for me that I read a review about this book before I started it. I somehow skimmed over the part in the summary where it mentions that it's really dark. Really, REALLY dark. And that's something that's good to know going in, because I'd expected something different altogether otherwise.

I liked Luce, though I did think her extreme loyalty to Catarina right from the start was odd. I mean, I can understand loyalty after you've been friends for a while, but right from the moment you meet? That was a bit unbelievable for me. I liked that Luce still had a conscience, something most of the other girls seemed to have lost at the same time they traded their legs for fins. I get that awful, unspeakable things have happened to these girls, but that doesn't make it less wrong to sink ships and kill people. Just for the fun of it.

It was a bit off-putting. I had a hard time connecting to other characters because they delighted so much in killing people. Innocent people who just happened to sail their boats at the wrong place and time. Catarina annoyed me a bit, she and Luce were supposedly really close, but she doesn't want to tell Luce about her past and then turns around and discusses it with a newcomer. I thought she was two-faced and just not the kind of person I'd put my trust in.

I had expected a bit more from the underwater-world, but it seemed a bit bland and grey. I did however like the whole idea of girls becoming mermaids for the reasons in this book and the mermaid-lore described in the book, including the singing and especially all their songs being different. I'm curious to see what will happen in the next book and if a certain boy will make another appearance, cause that could really add some extra intrigue!

I enjoyed the book, but going in you need to know that it's really dark. The ending left me feeling a bit confused, it somehow didn't feel like the end of a book. But I did like Luce and I'm looking forward to finding out what happens next!
My rating: 3 stars


  1. Wow! Sounds interesting. I don't think I would have ever guessed that it was so dark based on the cover. I like the idea of the girls turning into mermaids, but I doubt I'll read this one. Great review, and Thanks for posting!

  2. Sounds interesting, though I don't think it's my kind of book. I tend to like fluffier mermaid stories.
    And I wouldn't have guessed it was so dark either :P

  3. I very much agree with you on this. It was so dark...too dark for me. And I also thought Catarina was like two different people. It didn't make sense to the reader.