Sorry this review's even longer than my review of The Immortal Rules.. *couldn't stop talking*
Of Poseidon is the best mermaid book I've read in my life, although I should really say Syrena, since the M word makes Galen angry... I loved every single moment of this perfect book and knew it would be amazing from the very first page. With a clever blend of humour and romance with an exciting plot, Of Poseidon will please readers of all kinds. I don't think it's possible to describe and explain all of the ways it ravished my mind but we'll give it a go...
Emma McIntosh and her best friend, Chloe, are enjoying a sunny day at the beach….when Emma finds herself running face-first into the steely chest of one impossibly fine specimen named Galen. He and Emma had one of the most gripping exchanges and first-meetings I had ever seen. Immediately I felt the chemistry and couldn't wait for their relationship to develop into something more! If you had watched me read this book, you probably would've seen a cheesy grin plastered all over my face. Chloe is immensely entertaining with her confidence and lack of verbal filter, and one of the biggest strengths of this book is definitely Banks' humorous style of writing. Of Poseidon has a lot of depth and emotion to offer, and the moments of light-heartedness throughout the book are perfectly done, as they don't ever feel out of place.
Of Poseidon has a fascinating story line that is developed and consistently focused on throughout the book. Even with everything else happening, Banks keeps Emma's journey of self-discovery central to the plot. After Emma experiences a frightening shark attack at the beach, we're shocked to find that she can breathe underwater and communicate with the sea creatures. It then becomes obvious to us and Galen, the Syrenian prince, that Emma is much more like him than she realises. After Galen moves to attend her high school for "research", he spends all of his time trying to convince her that she's more than just a human but she refuses to believe this for a long time. (She doesn't even like fish!!) With this, we learn so much about the intriguing and unique history of the Syrenian world, as well as the make up of the species itself. I was glued to the pages and utterly fascinated by what Banks had created! Emma's true identity is swathed in mystery and the twists sustain the story for the book's entirety. While it's clear she's not human, there's still SO MUCH MORE for us to learn!
Banks injects romance into every little nook of the novel and I gobbled up every single bit. Every time Emma and Galen's special violet eyes met each other, I swooned. Galen's the fastest of his kind, able to race missiles and Blend in the water. How can you not be impressed? His character has many facets and seeing them all was an absolute joy. He gets angry, cheeky, sentimental, humorous, protective, provocative… You'll be shaking the book and screaming "MORE! MORE! MORE!". I cannot stress enough how well Banks develops the characters and gets us to fall in love with them. They all have so much depth and finishing the book is really like losing something of yourself! As I said before, the chemistry between him and Emma is truly a sight to see. While we'd love for them to live happily ever after, Syrena politics just have to get in the way. Every third generation, two direct descendants from the House of Poseidon and the House of Triton must mate. We discover that Emma is the only living heir of Poseidon and Galen's brother, Grom, is now the King of Triton. Do we all see the serious issue here?! To complicate things further, some Syrenian believe in "special mates", where two people are perfect for each other in every way and will produce the strongest offspring. *cough*GalenEmma*cough* Galen's torn between his feelings for Emma, his job back home and his duty as Grom's brother - I don't think you'll be bored for even a second.
I must give a mention to the brilliant secondary characters in this novel too. I loved them all just as much as I did Galen and Emma, and was very surprised by this. How often are all of the characters in a book well-developed, interesting and with a story of their own? Rayna is Galen's twin and she gets off to a rocky start with Emma. While this was a huge source of entertainment (seriously, they have a vicious smack down), the growth of their relationship was very fun to watch. Everyone, get out your "I Heart Toraf" shirts right now. This best friend of Galen's is one of the most likeable characters I've ever met. He's the comedian of the bunch and is completely huggable, kissable and marriable. He isn't a love interest for Emma but if she saw him that way I would be 100% conflicted because his parents are called Brilliant and Magnificent. The cool bit? Toraf's head over heels in love with Rayna, who's stubborn and refuses to admit she even likes him as a friend. They've known each other since they were children and are now being put into an arranged marriage… *squeals* This is an exciting side-plot that you'll actually be eager to get more of!
The skill and effort put into writing Of Poseidon is obvious and I think you'll be hard-pressed to find someone who didn't enjoy it. Add exquisite characters together with an enticing plot (did I mention Emma's mysterious stalker in the sea?) and this is what you get! Everything about Of Poseison is done with wonderful execution and I'm just chomping at the bit for more after that cliffhanger! The foundations are all laid out now, so can you imagine the kind of epic that will be in the sequel? *faints* I hope the sheer length of this review convinces you of how good this book is. (I could write more..) READ IT. If you don't, you are really missing out on a gem of 2012!
SORRY. I know this review is absolute overkill but... *is insanely in love* And love makes us do crazy things......right? Tell me you're going to read this book!