This book is March’s Sapphic Book Club read hosted by @sapphicliterature.
Title: Ice Massacre
Series: Mermaids of Erina Kwai
Publisher: Rogue Cannon Publishing
Release Date: September 18th 2014
Genres: Fantasy, YA, LGBT
Mermaids are the enemy to the people of Eriana Kwai. Metlaa Gaela should know this having lost her only brother to the Massacre – a yearly event when the wariors of Eriana Kwai battle the sea demons.
And yet, when she goes on her own Massacre, she still longs for the sea. She still has doubts about slaughtering mermaids. She still has compassion.
“Don’t think about it. You’re part of the sea now.” I wasn’t sure where my boldness came from, but soemhow I felt like I belonged on the water I thought maybe it was best not to say that aloud.
I enjoyed how the characters grew throughout the book. They started out as basically children facing impossible but still children. It was interesting to watch how stress and battles affected each of them – how they hardened, how they made decisions, how they tried to survive.
“Five hundred and four demons weren’t enough. For them, and for all the people who depended on me back home, I would slay every single one.”
Even Meela, with all her compassion, keeps on fighting to save herself and her crew. She struggles with her loyalty to her people and reuniting with a person from her past but she keeps on fighting. She wants both. She will make mistakes because of it. But ultimately her inside conflict can finally bring a change.
I liked the way side characters were written – they all had distinct personalities and they processed the stress of the battle differently. It was a great background to Meela’s struggles and provided some nice contrast.
I particulary loved the battle scenes. They were intense and realistic. They showed the struggle of killing and the struggle of losing your own people. They deceipted the stress, the desperation, the will to live.
As I said, it only took me so long to finish this book because I was in a reading slump. Otherwise i would be done with it in 3 days max – the pace is amazing and the suspense makes you want to read just one more chapter.
I don’t have many complaints about this book but I think the flashback was a bit too long or at least should be weaved into the main story because it dragged on a bit at the end. Also, I’m still trying to figure out a realistic reason to send 18 year olds to fight a war. I understand the bit as to why the island didn’t get much help from the mainland – with the current events it’s a great social commentary – but my brain hung onto placing the responsibility to slaughter the enemies onto a bunch of children.
“For Eriana Kwai,” she said. “We’ll make sure this Massacre was the last.” “For Eriana Kwai.” And for Lysi I thought.