Stop Calling Them Mermaids
There's a reason mankind knows more about other planets than we do of Earth's oceans, and it ain't that we lack technology to explore the watery world fencing our shores, folks. Hardly. You're telling me scientists put a man on the moon decades ago, but they still can't determine the location where Blue Whales mate?
The reason is them. They go many names - The Deep Dwellers ... Salt folk ... Mermaids.
Actually, I take that last one back.
I have it on good authority they hate being called mermaids. They feel it makes them sound weak and flowery. Just think about the description for a second - glittery fish scales and seashell bras ... come on. What pervy, old sailor dreamed that up? The chafing alone should make anyone in their right mind rethink Disney's charming, happy depiction of a Little Mermaid named Ariel.
Apologies if I seem jaded. This is what happens when you spend too much time with Selkie slave catchers. Look, if you're still reading this, I'm guessing you're okay with learning the facts. Might as well lay the truth on you. In all honesty, you probably won't ever see a mermaid or merfolk, at least not that you would recognize. The good kind, Merrows, they blend in with us. Might even be your neighborhood friendly cat lady.
As for the other kind, well, let's just say they consider it beneath them to step foot on land. Plus, there's the whole can't-breathe-air thing. Kinda gets in the way of going on land to hunt humans.
That's where the Selkies come in.
For the unSalted among you wondering what Selkies are, they're people who can transform into seals based on the type of hoodie they wear. Sounds wicked cool, right?
Schyeah. That's how they get you. They lure you with promises of transforming and experiencing the watery world in a way no human ever could on their own.
What those sorry Selkie slavers won't tell you is that once the hood goes on, you need help to revert back into human form. Don a Selkie hoodie and you shackle yourself to that dangerous realm beneath the waves. Good luck escaping. Even those fortunate enough to find their way back to shore forever glance over their shoulder, hoping they don't see others in hooded suits come to drag them back.
You see, most people forgot those old stories our ancestors told as bedtime stories to keep them safe. Instead, they allowed society to swap those warnings out for cutesy love triangles and happy endings. They let their guards down about merfolk because some no account, singing Jamaican crab and a smokin' hot redhead with a killer voice convinced them otherwise.
But fairytales hail from truth, and I think we should set the record straight.
Life isn't better under the sea, friends.
It's time to stop calling them mermaids, acknowledge what's really going on in the Salted depths, and recognize those who've escaped that watery hell.
It's time to get Salted.
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Salted was an intriguing read that kept me hooked. It is a different spin on the underwater world and creatures, which I found brought quite a bit of originality to the genre.
It's always hard to find a unique novel on mermaids. I've seen a spin or two from time to time, but nothing really original, and certainly nothing I'd really describe as 'cool'. That was until I got the chance to read Salted.
Galvin puts a new spin on life under the sea. I'm used to reading about more utopian scenarios beneath the waves, but here we discover a dank, dark world filled with kidnappers and slavers.
Aaron Galvin has a vivid and rich imagination (I'm a fan of Tolkien and Martin so I'm really into detail)...The plot is clever, inspiring, and definitely thought provoking. I'll never be able to look at a seal in quite the same way again!
We've been in a bit of a rut in the merbook business lately. Waiting for sequels, reading some filler in the time between...and then Salted waltzes in, and it blew my mind...it's a totally fresh take on selkies and merpeople, and definitely one of the best of the newer crop of mer-novels released. Go read it!
About the Author
He is also an accomplished actor. Aaron has worked in Hollywood blockbusters, (Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight, and Clint Eastwood's Flags of Our Fathers), and starred in dozens of indie films.
Aaron is a proud member of SCBWI. He lives in Southern California with his wife and daughter.
Learn more about Aaron
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