Maine, 1905: historian Frances Schmidt travels north in hopes of reading lawyer Garrett Hathaway's collection of books about mermen and mermaids. Ready to charm a crotchety old man, she's surprised to find a handsome young music-lover. But while Garrett seems more than willing to be her friend, he shies from getting any closer.
Garrett is hiding a terrible secret - no one knows that he is a merman. When he touches salt water, he sprouts gills and a blue, scaly tail. Despite his growing love for Frances, he is certain that she will see him as a monster if she ever learns the truth.
Can Frances change his mind? Or is she in over her head?
I loved listening to this story. It's unique that it's set in the early 1900's and about young women setting out to fulfill her dreams. Once she got to where she needed to go, she found more than what she knew she would. She fell in love with a young man but he has a secret. His secret kept him from telling her how he felt about her. Little does she know that once they kissed it would change her life forever.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
*I received this book in exchange for an honest review*
I love mermaid books so I was very excited to get the opportunity to review this book. Over Her Head is situation in the year 1905. It is a story about a young woman who was the only woman at Winthrop University studying history. She was completing her dissertation on merfolk but was having difficulties finding sources. Upon learning of a man in Maine that had an extensive library on merfolk, she takes off from Boston and shows up on his doorstep. I’m not going to go into anymore details because I hate spoilers. But I will say that Francis and Garrett have an interesting set of interactions. There is also the “lovely” woman, Mrs. Cooper, that Francis boards at her home…that woman is definitely a piece of work!! In the end, things work out pretty much as I figured they would; but at least it’s a happy ending.
Overall, the story is decent but the narration on the audio version is not the best. I understand that it takes a lot to edit out background noises, but there were some places when the sound of the pages being turned was a bit annoying. The narrator also did not have much voice variation, and that did not help give voice to the story. But she spoke clear and concise. One thing that was very well done, was the descriptions of Garrett’s home. I could definitely picture it, and would love to see it! I give this book a rating of 3.5 STARS.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Any additional comments?
This is a great book written by Nora Fleischer. This is a quick short book that you can listen to while cleaning the house. Frances Schmidt is a historian and travels to Main to read Garrett Hathaway’s collection of books about mermen and mermaids. She is surprised when she meets Garrett that he is a very handsome man. The more time they spend together they realize that they are more than just friends. But Garrett has a big secret that he must tell her, that he really is a merman. <br/><br/>The narrator Anna Starr did a great job with this book, and was very easy to listen to. She did a great job with the different voices of each character in this book. It was very easy to listen to in one sitting and I didn’t want to stop listening until the end.<br/><br/>If you are looking for a book with a great story, and characters then you need to listen to this book. I am looking forward to listening to the next book by this author and narrator. <br/><br/>A Review copy was provided to me in exchange for a fair and honest review. The free book held no determination on my personal review.<br/>
Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
I'd recommend it to a friend who likes this genre and who just wants a light novella.
How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?
I personally like more suspense and danger. I would of made the villains, who were basically nosy annoying busy bodies more evil and malicious.
What aspect of Anna Starr’s performance would you have changed?
She was an average narrator, not lacking but not outstanding either. Just an over all performance improvement would of been nice.
Do you think Over Her Head needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?
Yes I do think this could be a start of a series. There are questions about the origins of the mer-people as well as the heroe's parentage that could be answered in a follow up. I do think this could become a fun series.
Any additional comments?
“I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via AudiobookBlast dot come”<br/><br/>This is a fun short light hearted paranormal romance. I did like the heroine's personality. She was a strong independent woman in an era that didn't value such characteristics in woman. The heroes best friend was a hoot. The author did a good job with developing her characters.<br/><br/>I just like more action in my novels. For someone that likes a G rated light romance with out gore, this book would be a good choice.
Narration - Anna Starr - OK. This is weird, because she has a lovely voice, but at times, it seemed a little monotone, but then, it also seemed perfect for the character of Francis since she was an average looking scholar-woman from the early 1900's. The narration seemed to fit the time period to me.
The story is a sweet romance. Francis goes (on her own - which is pretty scandalous for this time period) to the coast to attempt to gain entry to Garrett's extensive library of books on Merpeople (which she has chosen for her thesis) He's turned all other's before her away, but after she shares some conversation and a plate of her fabulous cookies with Garrett, he succumbs and allows her into his collection. They strike up an unusual friendship during her research, which they both secretly hope becomes more.
Garrett has his secrets though and he's terrified Francis, or anyone else for that matter will find out. (of course she does) but you have to read/listen on your own to find out exactly what those secrets are!
Cute story, I enjoyed it!
I was given a free copy of this audiobook in exchange for an unbiased review
I thought this was a neat little original short story. It's something I've never heard before with Garrett being a merman. I like Francis a lot. She stood up for herself to ol' Mrs. Cooper which I thought was great. I didn't want to over think it because it was folklore mixed with fiction and it made sense to me. It was a good listen by Nora Fleischer and I'll be looking to see what she does in the future.
Anna Starr's a good narrator although I did notice some audio issues but nothing major. In fact, I like her voice a lot. There weren't many voice inflections but she added them in at good places in the story. Otherwise much of the story was monotone. That said, she has a good voice for this and I look forward to hearing more from her.
Audiobook received from Audioblast Newsletter in exchange for an unbiased review.
Set in early 1900s Maine, Frances Schmidt isn’t your average historian. Nope. She’s a woman. She has worked very hard to get her peers to ignore this fact so that she can finish her degree. She’s so close and the last big hurdle is completing her dissertation, one that she has focused on the myths and legends on merpeople. So she must travel to Maine to try to persuade Garrett Hathaway of letting her study his collection of such legends and tales. Since he is a very private person, she has quite a challenge ahead of him.
The bulk of this story is told through Frances eyes and I really enjoyed her character. She’s chosen a field that is male dominated and has a passion for it. Her peers are a mix of men; some support her efforts, some don’t mind her as long as she doesn’t act like a woman, and then there are some who actively try to block or sabotage her efforts. Also, I liked that she isn’t tall and willowy, but rather short and curvy. Some even call her stocky.
Garrett starts off as a pretty ordinary, if a little reclusive. However, he has a secret, one that has both left him lonely and hating himself but also given him such glee. I also suspect it is the reason he has such an athletic body.
The relationship between these two starts off perfectly professionally. Frances stays at a boarding house while in Maine, making sure to leave Garrett’s house each day before sunset. Propriety must be maintained. She initially bribes him with cookies she baked herself. This later turns into a mutual enjoyment of baking. It was quite sweet to watch the romance blossom between these two, and come to near disastrous ruin a few times due to misunderstandings. These two had to work for their love!
Sprinkled throughout the story are tidbits on merpeople – fanciful bits tossed in by the author but then also poems and works by other authors are cited by the main characters. These were especially nice touches.
My one little quibble occurs near the end of the story, and as such, deals with a spoiler. SPOILER ALERT It wasn’t clear to me how or why Frances became a mermaid when she takes a swim with Garrett. He thinks he transmitted a disease to her, but surely he (or other merpeople) have swum with other people and they didn’t run into merpeople. I could have used a few lines stolen from mythology to make this more plausible. Or perhaps some mystical/magical reason for the transformation. END SPOILER
Other than that one minor criticism, I really enjoyed this novella. The mix of merpeople myths, historical fiction, and romance kept me listening and not wanting to set the book down.
The Narration: Anna Starr was a good pick for Frances. She had a solid, no nonsense voice for her that could also be a bit vulnerable when it came to matters of the heart. Starr had a range of voices that allowed both male and female characters to come through distinctly.