Review: Forbidden Waters (Mermen & Magic, #1) by L.M. Brown

For the dying race of mer people homosexual relationships are forbidden. When Kyle falls for Prince Finn he knows he is navigating forbidden waters.

To save his clan from the ever-increasing shark attacks, merman Kyle seeks sanctuary for his people in the sunken city of Atlantis, even though he knows that as a homosexual merman he will be sacrificing his own chance for love. Love finds him anyway in the form of Prince Finn, the rebellious young heir to the Atlantean throne.

When their relationship is discovered Kyle is the one to pay the price. Banished from the oceans he seeks shelter in England and finds a new love with human, Jake Seabrook.

For Jake, Kyle is the chance to move on from the crush he has on his straight best friend. The strange man he found naked on the beach seems to fit into his life with ease. If only Kyle weren’t keeping secrets from him, Jake could see them having a future together.

Things are not what they seem for either of the men and when Kyle discovers the truth about Finn he knows he must return to Atlantis.

Three men, a tangled relationship, and one chance for happiness, if they can trust enough to take it.

Well hello L.M. Brown! What a fabulous world and series you've created with Mermen & Magic!

This isn't my first time reading this author, most certainly will not be my last! Forbidden Waters had so much to hold my attention - mythology suspense, Atlantis(!), a love triangle, twists and turns, humor, magic and of course mermen! It was great!

You know what it reminded me of? Early Sherrilyn Kenyon back when her series wasn't super stretched out. (I'm sorry Kenyon fans - I've been there but until Savitar's book comes out, I'm not going back there.) Kenyon had hot characters, great back story and plot mixed in with world building and light snark.  L.M. Brown does this but she went to the ocean with her series and travels to England know gay mermen. Plus, subplots that actually make sense. I recently got burned by a urban fantasy book that was dragged out for no reason. Not the case, in Forbidden Waters.

Kyle is the sudden leader apparent of his nomadic merfolk clan. He is openly gay but can only seek sanctuary in the homophobic Atlantis. He has to hide who he is but that proves to be hard for the happy bottom when he catches Prince Finn's eye. The two can't deny their passion and don't try to hide or fight it. But the author makes merman anatomy cool with heats and only being able to have sex in human form. This factors into some other twists and turns. Kyle and Finn fall for one another but this is a menage book, so things are put on ice on the mermen/merman love front.

As the blurb states, Kyle is banished from Atlantis and ends up in England where he meets human, Jake Seabrook. They both have wounds to heal and they comfort each other. And while this story does have sex and hot moments, the world building, is key to moving the plot along.

How the three men come together is pretty cool. And I expected it to be a sweet little HEA once they all agreed together but nope. There are gods and goddesses and so much more! You know my mythology geek self was all over this! Plus, I really enjoyed the way the author broke down each section of the book.

And get this...the triad, Jake, Finn and Kyle, they do this newfangled invention where they open their mouths and not just put penises inside. They SPOKE to one another. They actually talked before making decisions. And if they made a mistake, well by golly, they discussed that too and learned from it. WTF?! A relationship is hard work with just two people, three or more can be chaos but when all hands are on deck (horrible water pun I know), it can be work. And this throuple definitely are putting in the work.

Now this story does have a few minor hiccups (spoilerish):

- The virgin is penetratively deflowered off page. WTF?! That's the money shot!! No, no, no! Don't tease me in such a way. I wanted to read that scene and savor.
- Kyle/Finn - their side of the triangle - I think there should been another scene with just the two of them after all three men met each other. Something to maybe to not make it seem like it was Jake/Kyle more.
- The trident power thing? What's up with that? It kind of fell off after Atlantis use. There seemed to be something there. Is it tied to the throuple?
- Two out of the three visits Medina. Why not a scene with each man? The last 15-20% got a little rushed comparing to the rest of the novel.

Despite my minor issues, I can only really knock off 1/2 a heart from my entire rating. It was that good for me. The story really kicks ass. Major ass. So much so, I'm all over the next in the series. I have so many things I want for the next book. The biggest being: CASPIAN. Please, please, tell me he's getting a book. I don't even know anything about him. I have a theory about the sort of crass, sort of tight lipped, snarky...magical man but...I'm not telling.

Loved this book. Wished I read this earlier but so happy I came upon this now. Because I'm all over this mermen/mythology tale!

For more information on Goodreads or Booklikes!


  1. Mermen menage (sort of)?!?!?!? O___O

    Excellent review, Baby.

    1. It was hot menage. But there were moments where the head upstairs were used too. It was nice. :D Thanks.

  2. First of all, thank you for your kind words about my story. As a huge Sherrilyn Kenyon fan (she is one of the few M/F authors I still read today) to be compared to her is a huge compliment. And yes, I am also tapping my fingers impatiently for Savitar's story, and Nick's, and if Jared and Jaden turn out to be lovers (not very likely but I'm not the only one living in hope), goodness knows I will be all over that book the minute it is released!

    Secondly, I adore those gifs and pictures. You may be interested to know that the picture of the merman alone holding the trident was the inspiration for Dax.

    With regard to your question about Caspian. Yes, he will have his own story (book 6) and you will get to see more of him between now and then, including what I hope is an unexpected side to him in book 2.

    I am glad your minor hiccups didn't detract from the story too much. A couple of them were actually deliberate as they tie into events later on. The trio's story isn't over yet and will continue in book 5. :-)

    Thank you again for your lovely review of my story. I am glad you enjoyed your first visit with my mermen.

    1. There will be (at least) six books?!! I'm so there!! I'm super excited for this series. I can't wait to see what you have in store for everyone.

      Thank you for writing this. This theme is definitely my kind of read. :D

      More CASPIAN?!! *claps in glee* I can't wait! I have book #2 waiting for me!!

      I can go on for days about my disappointment with Kenyon's series. She has added so many new people and went off on too many tangents, I gave up. I'm sad to say. But if Savitar or any MM action (I too doubt it) ever happens, I'll be back in.

  3. Yes, I have six books planned with Caspian's story being the last.

    There was a hint in one book of Kenyon's but it could go either way. It was a line from the MC POV when the two characters hugged saying they were either brothers or really good friends. The context etc sparked a lot of debate as it was around the time of Ward (?) releasing her MM book in the middle of her series and Kenyon won't elaborate on the relationship.

    I really hope she does go in that direction. I do still read the series but do have trouble keeping track. After Acheron and Styxx I keep comparing the other books by their standards. I have not read the latest one yet.

    Releasing a MM could really revive the series. In a world with so many characters law of averages say that some should be gay. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

    1. I'll join you in keeping fingers crossed for a gay couple in Kenyon's series (I doubt it or if she does do it, I have a feeling she'll cop out like a couple of other popular het UF authors) :/

      Acheron was the best! I read that massive book so many times. LOL But I got lost with all the new characters she kept creating.

      Thankfully I have Kresley Cole. :D

      I'll keep my eye out for all of those books. Keep them coming (Though I'll let you know I want Caspian's BADLY - no pressure.) ;)

    2. I think you could probably pick up Styxx without catching up on the rest of the series. It is more like Acheron's story than the rest of the series and, in my opinion, added to his story, kind of like seeing the other side of things since a lot of it was about his back history, that took place at the same time as Acheron's.

      LM (who can't get it to post anything with my account added today)