***I was granted permission to read this by the author and publisher due to winning the ARC in a giveaway prior to release. I chose to do a review on my own. Quotations could change from ARC to publication.***
Rating: 5 stars
Pub date: 29 October 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Format: ARC via author
Status: Book one of the Aquarathi series
THE GIRL WHO WOULD BE QUEEN
Nerissa Marin hides among teens in her human form, waiting for the day she can claim her birthright—the undersea kingdom stolen from her the day her father was murdered. Blending in is her best weapon—until her father’s betrayer confronts Nerissa and challenges her to a battle to the death on Nerissa’s upcoming birthday—the day she comes of age.
Amid danger and the heartbreak of her missing mother, falling for a human boy is the last thing Nerissa should do. But Lo Seavon breaches her defenses and somehow becomes the only person she can count on to help her desperate search for her mother, a prisoner of Nerissa’s mortal enemy. Is Lo the linchpin that might win Nerissa back her crown? Or will this mortal boy become the weakness that destroys her?
I admit, mermaids have never been my thing. I’ve never really been interested in them – until the YA Scavenger Hunt that is. When I read the description of Waterfell, I knew I had to read it. When Amalie contacted me to let me know I won her giveaway, I squealed. No, really. I did. My son looked at me like I’d lost my mind. We were on a boat out at the lake. It echoed in our little cove. Good thing that was just for winning and not reading it!
From the beginning I was hooked. Nerissa is such a magnetic character. She makes you want to know more about her and about her situation. What could possibly make a princess want to stay away from her kingdom?!
Rissa’s world is rocked when new boy, Lo, arrives. She’s asked to show him around their school and she’s less than thrilled, but finds he can match her snark for snark.
“Whoa, try not to sound so ecstatic! New kid babysitter, the job you’ve always wanted.” – Lo, pg 34
Who doesn’t love a cute guy with a great sense of humour and a good dose of snarkiness?
Best friend, Jenna, is always up to diffuse the tension between Rissa and Lo.
“Hey, I’m Jenna, the snarky one’s best friend, and this is my boyfriend, Sawyer. I take it you’re the Antichrist or something.” – Jenna, pg 38.
Rissa trusts Jenna enough to reveal her secret – that she’s an alien water creature called an Aquarathi. Jenna freaks a bit, but promises to keep Rissa’s secret and to stay by her side. Definitely the type of best friend every girl needs! (:
Despite Rissa’s best efforts, she finds herself falling for Lo –
The boy with the eyes of my home’s darkest secrets.
A cute guy with reminders of home etched into his being? She doesn’t stand a chance!
Rissa is challenged by her guardians’ son, Spieo, on not wanting to return home to Waterfell, but to remain in human form in San Diego. He calls her a coward because she doesn’t want to fight for her throne. She reminds him that before her father was murdered, he anted her to stay away from Waterfell. Her throne has also been usurped by Ehmora. He also resents that she told Jenna the truth about their kind.
Before she can drown herself in her guilt, she discovers that her long suspected dead mother is really in the clutches of Ehmora and Ehmora challenges Rissa to a fight to the death for the High Court throne. Ehmora uses Rissa’s mother as a bargaining chip. Rissa is torn on what her next course of action should be.
What will happen? Does Lo return Rissa’s affections, or did Rissa realise her feelings too late? Does Rissa accept Ehmora’s challenge for the throne? Does someone reveal himself or herself as a traitor?
Find out by reading all of Waterfell! Seriously, it’s a FANTASTIC book! If I could’ve shirked all responsibilities, I would’ve read it all in one go. Can I have Oceanborn now? Yes, please? (: