HH Com 439

Leah Sunderland has been cheated out of the last eight years of her life, thanks to a coma. To make matters even worse, she’s died and can’t quite get to Heaven. Instead, she’s stuck in the middle of nowhere with no company except a fairy godmother named Mabel. Since it’s Mabel’s fault that Leah died, she offers Leah a choice: remain on earth as a ghost forever, or complete a fairy-tale task like the stories of old.

When Leah picks the fairy tale, she has no idea what she’s getting into. In the space of minutes, she’s dumped into the ocean, robbed of her voice, and given a tail. Mabel’s decree: make the handsome prince fall madly in love with her in the next thirty days, or else she’s right back to ghost-world.

The problem is, the man Leah needs to seduce thinks that she is the mistress of his sworn enemy. He wants nothing to do with her.

The second problem? She’s fallen in love with him.

And that’s against all the rules of the mermaid curse.

THE MERMAID CURSE is a 90,000 word paranormal romance.

I'm not sure why I'm seeing all these "can't get into heaven till you perform a trick" books lately but this has to be the tenth at least.

There's nothing here but gimmick. Focus on the story: Leah. Write short declarative sentences. Leave the cute for later. Tell us what she wants and who is standing in her way. Does she WANT to get to heaven? If I was in limbo, the place I'd want to be is back in New York. Damn fast too. And why does she pick the mermaid fairy err...tail?


mozartgirl said...

I don't see the (substantial)difference between this book and the Disney movie "The Little Mermaid"?

Anonymous said...

I think this one sounds really fresh and fun, and the plot seems complex enough to hold my interest. I'm intrigued by the love interest, and I bet this author has the creativity and humor to pull off a really great story.

Anonymous said...

I liked this. Sounds cute and wasn't vague and too wordy like most hooks.

Miss Snark missed the mark on this one.

Inkwolf said...

Gotta agree with Mozartgirl.

In the film, Ariel the mermaid trades her voice for legs, and voicelessly must make the prince fall in love with her (and kiss her) within three days, or she will belong to the sea witch who enchanted her.

The mermaid, combined with the loss of voice and the goal of making the prince fall in love with her within a time limit are just too similar to escape comparison. And Disney cartoons are something that people watch over and over in childhood until they are burned into their brains, and become treasured (almost SACRED in some cases) memories.

I'm sorry, but if you DO succeed in publishing this, your book is going to get kicked to the moon and back by PO'ed Disney and Ariel fans.

Anonymous said...

Um...I'm pretty sure it's *supposed* to be a rip on _The Little Mermaid_. I'm very interested in seeing this author's all-grown-up version.

Anonymous said...

I think it IS supposed to be a new version of The Little Mermaid, which was a treasured story long before Disney came along. I'm a huge fan of books based on fairy tale motifs, like Ella Enchanted and Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, and I'd love to read one about mermaids.

Sara Dennis said...

While this may well be a retelling of the Little Mermaid, the story's not Disney's. Hans Christian Andersen wrote the original.

Annie said...

Hans Christian Andersen's little mermaid story was around well before the Disney version. (Disney changed some key elements, such as letting the mermaid actually win the prince.) I don't think there's anything wrong with using the old story in this context, so long as it's a unique treatment that holds together.

Jodi Meadows said...

I love this. There are lots more mermaid stories than the little mermaid, disney version. In fact, it's an old, old fairy tale -- look it up!

I think this sounds great. A normal girl trapped in a fairy tales -- and in non-disneyfied versions of fairy tales, they don't end up happy.

The writing is sharp and snappy with a great sense of humor about the whole thing. I really want to read this book!

Anonymous said...

My heart is breaking. "This is just like Disney's Little Mermaid!" Actually, it's just like Hans Christian Andersen's Little Mermaid, on which the film was based (though the endings are quite different). I'm going to go sob in the corner of the library where books are kept, far away from the video shelves. *sob sob*

Anonymous said...

Mozartgirl, I'm pretty sure the author intended it to sound like the fairy tale The Little Mermaid. That's the point.

writtenwyrdd said...

I gotta say, that my thought when I read this was that Leah must be an idiot, because the original Little Mermaid ends with the mermaid losing and becoming sea foam. That doesn't bode well for her quest.

I assumed that the author wouldn't riff off of Disney's version.

I was confused by the second problem, though. Why wouldn't she fall in love witht he prince, considering that is how the original fairy tale ran? I'd have expected her not to be in love with him, and the problem wouuld be her lack of interest. And, if this is humor, she'd spend a bunch of time arguing for a different fairy tale to suffer through.

Anonymous said...

sobbing anonymous:

Can I join you?

Anonymous said...

I thought the accept- Jesus-as-your-savior-thing was THE way to slip through those pearly gates.

Dang, just when you think you've got something aced, they change the freakin' rules.

Virginia Miss said...

What does Leah get if she completes her fairy tale?

I actually think this adhered to the hook formula pretty well, we get a sense of the romantic complications with the two problems given. I also think it's well written. The only thing is, will agents see this as overdone instead of a cool update of an old fairy tale?