Friday, May 18, 2012

Review: The Vicious Deep by Zoraida Cordova

From Goodreads: For Tristan Hart, everything changes with one crashing wave. He was gone for three days. Sucked out to sea in a tidal wave and spit back ashore at Coney Island with no memory of what happened. Now his dreams are haunted by a terrifying silver mermaid with razor-sharp teeth. His best friend Layla is convinced something is wrong. But how can he explain he can sense emotion like never before? How can he explain he’s heir to a kingdom he never knew existed? That he’s suddenly a pawn in a battle as ancient as the gods. Something happened to him in those three days. He was claimed by the sea ... and now it wants him back. 

My Rating: 3.5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: The Vicious Deep by Zoraida Cordova was a book that I thought would be much darker and have more action. Even though that didn’t turn out to necessarily be the case, I was still pleased with Cordova’s debut because the characterization and worldbuilding were fabulous.

I sometimes find that when female authors are writing from the point-of-view of a male teenager, their protagonist doesn’t sound like a guy. Cordova, however, appears to have nailed it with Tristan’s voice. At times, I really liked Tristan because he had a great sense of humour and because even though he could be quite cocky, he did have his moments of insecurity. At other times though, I wanted to slug him for acting like a jerk and being so thoughtless. Either way, I thought Tristan was a pretty memorable character.

Cordova’s secondary characters were fleshed out nicely too. Although I didn’t care for the romance angle between Tristan and Layla (mainly because Tristan came off as a player to me), I liked that Layla didn’t get overshadowed by Tristan’s personality. I also enjoyed Tristan’s interactions with his parents, Kurt, Thalia and Marty, and I can’t wait to see how he holds up against Nieve.

As well, it’s obvious that Cordova put a lot of thought into her worldbuilding, and I liked the allusions to The Little Mermaid. I would have preferred the search for the Sea King’s missing trident pieces to have started earlier though so that it didn’t feel rushed at the end.

A solid start to what I think will be an extremely fun trilogy, The Vicious Deep was released by Sourcebooks Fire on May 1, 2012.

Comments About the Cover: The storm raging in the background complements the title of the book and the slogan “Don’t let it pull you under.” Also, since The Vicious Deep isn’t overly girly, it could be marketed to male readers and so it’s nice that the cover can appeal to them too.  

In exchange for an honest review, this ARC was received from the publisher (Sourcebooks) for free via NetGalley.


  1. This sounds pretty good! I'm a bit wary when it comes to mermaid books so I'm not sure if I want to pick his one up but it sounds really good and I love books with a male protagonist.

  2. Though it didn't seem to meet your expectations at first, I'm glad that you were able to enjoy the book for the most part. And I agree with you about the male pov written by female authors- it's really hard to make it sound authentic. This sounds like a fun series to chill out and enjoy. I think I'll pick this one up if I see at the library. Happy Friday, Z!

  3. Hi! I just had to pop over and meet you. I just read your bio and I agree! Psych is the bomb. I have my degree in it. Best class ever... Abnormal Psych but I did love my intro as well. I used to commute to school too. Two hours round trip. Lots of naps on the bus.
    About your review. I just win a copy of this one. I am intrigued by the mernan perspective but I think my opinion will run close to yours.

  4. I haven't read this yet but when I first saw the cover I thought the story would be darker too. I don't think I've read any mermaid books from a male point of view so it should be interesting.

  5. I believe this is the first review I've read for this one. I really had no idea what to expect previously so thanks for that. I still have never read a mermaid book before. I guess none so far have particularly captured my attention. Though I am tempted about this one if you say the world building was well done!

  6. I felt much the same way Z! I thought Tristan definitely sounded like a teenage guy, not a woman trying to make him sound like a teenage guy, and that was fun for me to read. He did drive me crazy at times, and like you, I wish the trident-hunt started sooner, but I'm really looking forward to seeing where the series goes. Lovely review:)

  7. I've heard lots of great things about this book. I'm glad you liked it, Zahida! I love when female authors can nail a male's POV perfectly. Not many people can do that. Also, the characters sound really well written, which I love. I think I'll definitely have to check this book out! Wonderful review, Zahida!

  8. I agree about the cover, but it's still a bit deceiving because I would have thought it'd be a darker story too. But, I'm glad to know that the Tristan's voice sounds male. That's important to me for swooning purposes. hehe

    And hasn't anyone ever told you, Don't hate the player, hate the game. LOL


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