“Insane, I knew. Words meant nothing, she was full of her own kind of madness. It would kill her, sooner or later.
Madness kills us all.”
**I received this novel for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review**
This book was wonderful. Seriously… What a beautiful story full of feels, violence and loads of good stuff. This novel definitely exceeded my expectations. I thought this book was gonna be shit. Plus it is shelved as a ‘dark fantasy’ so I was expecting just a standard grimdark. Actually no I expected a grimdark with mermaids? Which scares me.. I don’t like mermaids, so I thought this book would be terrible and extremely cheesy, it did take a good 80 pages for me to be drawn into the story however I was wrong about it being shit and cheesy, I’m so happy I was wrong. This novel is so much more then just a ‘Grimdark’, it was so freaking amazing and it was literally an emotional roller coaster. I can’t remember the last time I read something so full of feels, I know what your thinking… “This girl is always talking about the feels” I know I’m extra and always get the ‘feels’, but this novel was different, this novel made me laugh & more importantly cry. It got to the point where I would have to put the book down and just cry hysterically for like ten minutes then try to blow my nose for an hour. I have never felt feels like this. Not even joking or exaggerating, imagine someone grabbing your heart and squeezing it for fun, until it explodes. That’s clearly what this book does to you. I couldn’t take the feels. We always talk about feeling sympathy for characters, well I’ve never felt empathy like I have for the main character in this book. She’s so goddamn precious, I hate this author, why is the author such a cruel man to make us feel this way? Why does he torture my precious Arukh endlessly. But anyway this book has definitely left a lasting impression on me and I’ll be thinking about the story for a very long time.
You’ve never heard of this author?! Clearly you’ve been living under a rock….. So have I, don’t worry. This author is so unknown. Who even is D.G Valdron? When this book was recommended to me by one of my favourite authors (Fletcher because the dudes got good taste), I tried researching the man who wrote it, I literally found nothing. There’s a blank goodreads page with no photo, 14 reviews on this book and that’s it. Upon searching deeper I finally found his paperback edition of The Mermaids Tale, the book was $32. I thought to myself ‘what the actual heck the pages must be made of solid gold or some shit’. Anyway that lead me to the publisher & I finally found a picture and some information on the author. He is literally a man of mystery and I’m so intrigued… Is he even real or what?! The real point im trying to get at is, that I have found a hidden gem & the publisher is willing to share the ebook for free for a whole entire two weeks to help with awareness, this novel is deserving of so much love and praise. It is so brilliantly written and the story itself is so wonderful. If you don’t download it while it’s for free, you missed your chance at discovering what a treasure this story is.
“What a strange pathetic mad thing she was.
We all were.”
So basically this novel is about a world at war. All races are warring against one another in a city full of brutality. Imagine a world with nearly every beast you’ve learnt about in mythology. Trolls, Mermaids, Selks, Kobolds, Goblins, Hobgoblins, Humans (obviously the rarest beasts of mythology, like who has ever seen or heard of a human before?), there’s Giants, Vampires & Arukh (Orcs). There is a special magical race who are consider sacred, they are the Mermaids, born from Selks but permanently water bound. The Selks find a Mermaid murdered and call in an Arukh to investigate. The Arukh are abominations, prone to violence, soulless killers & basically scum of the earth. Our Main character soon finds out that she’s on the hunt for a mass murderer who has a fetish for mutilating and raping their victims. But during her search for the killer the Arukh goes on a journey of self discovery and looks for her own redemption. This novel is hauntingly beautiful, heart breaking & will leave you breathless. Told in first person perspective this mystery novel is a must read for people who are not highly sensitive to graphic violence and rape. The writing is sensational, especially when you take into consideration the fact that this is pretty much a debut novel. I didn’t come across any mistakes and found the writing to flow perfectly. The prose is definitely unique, I personally have never read anything like this novel before, its beautiful, lyrical, philosophical, flowery, wonderful & a journey of self discovery. I loved this story so much.
“What does Arukh mean?”
I sat on the dock again. The Mermaids were gathered in the water around me. I wasn’t sure which of them had asked.
“It is a word of the goblins. It means abomination. Abomination in the eyes of God.”
“All of them.”
The emotions I had while reading this novel were so intense. The way the Arukh are treated tore me to shreds, our main Arukh lets the way other think of her define who she is, people think she’s an animal so she herself thinks of herself as an abomination and an animal. By the end of the novel I was furious with the way Arukh are treated, especially my Arukh. She’s so clever, kind, badass & doesn’t kill mercilessly. I loved her and hate the way she was treated and hated reading about the on going battle she had with herself daily, it broke my heart. Imagine thinking of yourself as scum and an abomination but also protecting and caring for others, but then always thinking your not good enough to protect anyone and always knowing you’ll be shun and tortured by others. Imagine every single person you ever meet instantly hating you because of your race? At some points in the novel I felt I was suffocating, this story definitely is confronting and sometimes hard to read, not because the writing is difficult to cipher but because it deals with things us humans hate to think about, the three main themes in this novel are; Rape, murder & racism.
Luckily there was some good stuff happening too, the journey of self discovery is inspiring and there a lot of humor thrown in to break up all the grim stuff happening “I saw one dwarf stick his buttocks out an upper floor and shit in the street.” there is talking shits “I had a dream,” the Vampire announced. “I dreamt that I squatted, and dropped a large piece of shit. And then it began to speak to me.”
“This was your dream?” I asked.”.
Also the mystery of the murderer in this novel keeps you guessing until the end, it’s full of twists, unexpectedness & badassery. A fantastic novel that I will definitely read again soon and I can finally justify paying the $32 for the paperback edition.
“My chest felt full, like there was something inside trying to get out. My eyes were burning. I blinked again and again to clear them, but they still burned.”
“This is why whenever you find an Arukh, it must be destroyed!”
I turned and fled.
Behind me, a Mermaid called, “we know.”
“Arrah!” I roared, running into the night.
They had destroyed me.”
Recommended to all fantasy fans and also people who love self discovery novels. Please remember that this novel is a grimdark so if your a sensitive fucker stay away please.. there is themes of excessive rape (gang rape aswell), graphic violence & racism.
Ps.In celebration of all things Arukh, the publisher will be making this novel for free on Kobo from the 31st of July to the 13th of August. Please make sure you grab your free addition and do not fret, I’ll be bumping this review the day the deal goes live and posting status reminders aswell.