Sonoma MediaWorks (October 2023)
126 pages; $4.99 paperback
Reviewed by Chandra Claypool (Instagram) (TikTok)
Shimmerfish is a coming-of-age horror about a young woman who flees abuse and finds a new world filled with the enchantments of mermaiding. She’s got her tail, her mer-sona and a mer-name, but something feels fishy, and she’s forced to confront her deepest fears in order to uncover the truth.
I am a huge fan of good word play but there was a bit too much for my taste in this read. I was most definitely fin-ished at 31% through. A hundred mer-cent …. It is not mer-mazing unfortunately. Do you hear me, sea-ster?
I like the concept of mer-witches but I’m a bit unsure about how I truly feel regarding this combo. What the hex. But I did enjoy Anemone as a strange character.
Amy Jay, who ran away, is our main character and I found her to be just ok. I enjoyed some of her storyline and while I can suspend reality most of the time there were just too many things happening here that just didn’t make sense.
This story just wasn’t at all what I was expecting and it didn’t quite work for me. However, if you have an inkling toward mermaid life (no real mermaids here unfortunately) with a splash of thriller weirdness, grab your mono fin and dive right in.
Shimmerfish is a good fit for those seeking a coming-of-age horror story with a unique blend of quirky characters, suspense an a touch of magical realism. Get witchy with it.