Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Mermaids, Mythology, and the Mysterious Siren

My debut novel, Dark Siren has hit the bookshelves! Publisher’s Weekly praised the emotional fervor and complex mythology of this fast-paced coming of age story for creatures both young and ancient. Dark Siren is a journey of two characters as they find redemption, a second chance at love, and come to accept that sometimes, great evil is necessary to keep what is loved most. This modern fantasy blends adventure, romance, and plenty of action. Fans of the supernatural definitely won’t be disappointed.

So with that in mind, let’s talk creatures!

Mermaids, Mythology, and the Mysterious Siren

fantasy, siren, mermaid

Mermaid: a fabled marine creature with the head and upper body of a woman and the tail of a fish. Mermaids can be female or male (mermen). (Merriam Webster).

Books featuring mermaids (or mer) have really gained popularity in the last year. A search in the Amazon Kindle store brings up dozens of titles with some pretty fantastic looking covers.

In European folklore, *mermaids were sometimes referred to as sirens. Mermen were known to have magical and/or prophetic powers.

At this point, you may be thinking of lovely Ariel from Disney’s The Little Mermaid.
mermaid, romance, supernatural

However, in folklore, merkind were mostly dangerous to humans. Encounters with them brought misfortune, even floods or other natural disasters if a mermaid were offended.

Human men would steal a mermaid’s object, something like a comb or mirror, and marry her. As long as the object remained hidden, the relationship endured.  But if the mermaid discovered her object, she would leave her husband and go back to the sea.

Sirens are a bit darker.

Merriam Webster defines siren as any of a group of female and partly human creatures in Greek mythology that lured mariners to destruction by their singing. (May or may not have fish tail. Always deadly!)

Synonymous with siren: enchantress, femme fatale, seductress, temptress

The myth of sirens probably arose from tales of the perils of the early explorers.

mythology, siren, redemption

*Sirens were daughters of the sea god, Phorcys or of the river god Achelous. In Homer’s Odyssey, Odysseus escaped the danger of the sirens’ song by stopping the ears of his crew with wax and then tying himself to the mast. In this way, Odysseus could hear the beautiful but deadly music without endangering the ship.  

mythology, siren, creatures

Interestingly enough, actual sirens do exist in the animal kingdom. These eel-shaped amphibians constitute a genus (siren) and have small forelimbs but neither hind legs nor pelvis. They are embodied with permanent external gills as well as lungs.

So you could run into these creepy but kinda cute little suckers in the water or on land!

siren, creatures, paranormal

Pretty cool, huh?

Dark Siren features two main characters, Kalista and Rhane. Kalista isn’t little. And she's definitely not a mermaid. And Rhane…well, he’s a different breed altogether.

Thinner than Blood is my latest release and my take on dystopian paranormal...there are no mermaids or sirens. But there are shapeshifters and a bit of mad science. It's a permanently free ebook. Available on Barnes & Noble. Smashwords (in a variety of formats, including mobi for Kindle). Kobo. And the iTunes store. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

There was an error in this gadget