Retro Review: Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs

Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs
Genre: Contemporary Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: June 1, 2010

Forgive My Fins is a lighthearted romantic YA story. The plot is straightforward enough: Lily Sanderson is a half-human/half-human who has a crush on her high school champion swimmer, Brody. She’s totally positive that the moment she reveals that she’s a mermaid, he’ll fall instantly in love with her and agree to come live with her as a merman in her underwater kingdom. Standing in the way of her perfect plan is Quince, a neighborhood guy who seems to live to annoy her. Lily’s under a lot of pressure as the princess of her kingdom to pick someone to bond with soon. When her attempt to finally confess to Brody causes the attempted bonding to go laughably wrong, she sets off to undo the damage before she ends up separated from her crush forever.

I picked this book up after falling in love with Tera Lynn Childs’s Medusa Girls series, a trilogy I’m hoping to re-read and review at another time. Also, I love mermaids. Scary mermaids, cute mermaids, fluffy mermaids, I’ll take them all. And this book is indeed fluffy. It’s the novel equivalent of a big, oversized plushie you might win at a carnival. (Hey, when this book came out, carnivals were a thing.) Do you need a plush toy half the size of your bed? Of course not. Do you have space for it? Highly questionable. Do you want it anyway? Of course you do. Because squeezing its guts out after a hard day is therapeutic, and quite frankly, we could all use a little bit of that stuffy-squeezing therapy right now.

The plot does have some questionable moments. Not the least of which is that the setup revolves around two characters kissing people who weren’t expecting to be kissed without any sort of lead-up. But I could extend it a little grace in that regard, not only because the book is over ten years old at this point, but more importantly, the two offenders suffer the consequences of their terrible ideas almost instantly.

Lily skirts the edge of being a Mary Sue at times, but she was ultimately able to stay out of those waters for me. Yes, guys think she’s pretty even though she doesn’t. But she has the one thing Mary Sues never have, and that’s a genuine flaw. Lily has a really bad habit of envisioning how she wants reality to be and acting on it, rather than seeing it for what it is, and I appreciated the way she’s forced to confront that. The story isn’t complex, and it isn’t trying to be. If you need a light refresher in the middle of some heavier reading, Forgive My Fins may be right up your alley. Or rather, your current.

Rating: 4 out of 5

You can find Forgive My Fins on Goodreads

You can also buy Forgive My Fins on Amazon. (Affiliate link)

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