In The Hunted, Bethany-Kris opens a new world—the 9INE REALMS—for readers with a dark fairy tale retelling, and pulls inspiration from the cult classic favorite and the Hans Christian Andersen original to redefine what it means to be The Little Mermaid.
Let the hunt begin …
After witnessing the murder of his mother by a mermaid, Prince Eryx Bloodhurst of Atlas makes a deal to sedate his need for vengeance: they’ll catch the mermaid who did the deed, but he’ll pay for it with his crown.
Arelle, third princess of the Blu Sea, has never known the true cruelty of the forbidden lands firsthand, but she will soon. The halfling prince with murder in his eyes and the sea’s songs in his blood will make sure of that.
He should kill her.
Perhaps, keeping her might be worse.
Two kingdoms are falling. One king is losing it all and another threatens to ruin everything. The rules of the land and sea are changing. Secrets of the past are spilling.
And all because of a prince and his little mermaid—whether they live or die—nothing in the realm will ever be the same.
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Fly Girl’s Review:
I’ve waited with much anticipation for a Bethany-Kris novel that was a standalone unique novel. My last one by her was Cozen, a Mafia Mystery that was to die for and even made my Top 10 for 2018 list. Last year she did a Mafia series that didn’t spark my interest for some reason, so when I saw this on the upcoming list I jumped at it.
Arelle isn’t just a mermaid, but one of four princesses to the Blue Sea. She, however, isn’t the demure thing of a Disney movie, she’s tough, gritty, has no sense of responsibility other than to follow her sisters. Not a great princess in my book. When she gets all of her sisters caught or killed, she then starts to realize that she has a responsibility to her people. But she still goes down a selfish path and mates with a land walker instead of the merman chosen for her to help strengthen their clan and help protect the Blue Sea. It seems through the whole novel that the girl is selfish while the land walker she mates with is just trying to find the love he lost when his mother took her own life.
Of course there is lots of confusion and he doesn’t learn until much later that his mother begged to die, so his hunt for Arella is actually about trying to kill her first. Then the mating happens and he can’t seem to get enough of her. It takes him about a third of the book to realize what the mating bond is and that he loves her.
Although this isn’t the end of Arella’s story, the entire book feels selfish in her pursuit of love and his of revenge. The one thing I’m not so sure about is the mating bond. The way they talk about it, the individuals really don’t have a choice since they are tied to one another magically, so how does it still give them the ability to decide on love?
I’m giving this a 3.5 because of the selfish properties. I feel like love should be selfless and this doesn’t really fit that. The world-building and the story are well worth the read though.
3.5 of 5 Propellers
Connect with Bethany-Kris
Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.