The Siren

326p. ebook available. HarperCollins/HarperTeen. 2016. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780062391995.
Gr 7 Up—Kahlen still has trouble adjusting to the life of a siren. After becoming a siren 80 years ago, she is still unable to subdue the disgust and shame she feels while taking innocent lives in order to feed the Ocean. The Ocean is a motherly being who feeds off lives that drown in her waters. Sirens are the few young women whose lives she saves from death in order to keep her fed. Ocean cares intensely for Kahlen. However, when the protagonist falls in love with Akinli, a human boy, her responsibility to care for her sisters (also sirens) and the Ocean becomes a complicated task. Her sisters, along with the Ocean, watch her soul and body deteriorate the longer she is away from Akinli, who appreciates the true Kahlen, aside from her beauty and silence. Overall, the heroine is a meek character, but her muddled past, thoughts, and actions make her slightly interesting. Teens will appreciate her passion for her relationships—whether romantic or sisterly. Secondary characters aren't as intriguing or fully developed. Despite these shortcomings, the novel is fairly well written and offers a twist on Hans Christian Andersen's "The Little Mermaid" that romance fans will enjoy.
VERDICT A satisfactory purchase for libraries with a strong and faithful Cass fan base.

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