Merrows are supposed to be extinct. No one has seen the water-breathing creatures in over a century.
That’s all eleven-year-old Mira has time to think as she stares at the silver scales that have spread over her foot before she accidentally triggers a curse that will change her world forever. She and her best friend, Peter, are forced to embark on a journey across the kingdom, escaping from ruthless spies who will stop at nothing to capture them before anyone else learns Mira’s secret.
With the help of a runaway scholar and a familiar young boy who reveals that he, too, has just discovered that he is a merrow, the children begin to train to beat the spies at their own game. Before they can truly find safety, Mira must learn to use the mysterious powers of her people, or else she and her friends may never be able to return home again.
Hidden Scales offers away a wonderfully imagined world with courageous and likable characters that were thrown in an adventure towards solving mysteries and unlocking some secrets about themselves.
I like the story, mainly because it feels like I’ve found another magical and fantastic story where I can be a kid myself again. I enjoyed joining the characters in their journey onto finding answers to their questions and also their curious minds. I also like the narration. The town, the capital, and other places were impressively described that you’ll feel like the places were slowly showing itself around you. The way the author tells the story is fascinating because even though I’m not a kid anymore, it does not make me feel bored with reading this. I also love how things were discovered and how most of the stuff in the story is unpredictable.
We have a handful of characters here, but I will talk about Mira, Kay, and Peter the most.
Mira is the main character here. She’s a merrow, but she didn’t know it yet until she saw those silver scales on her feet and she triggers a curse that will lead her to an adventure – to find stuff about being a merrow and to run away from dangerous spies. As a character and also a kid, it is understandable at times why she acts in some ways like being excited over things that are new to her eyes and getting curious over stuff that is unknown and yet intriguing to them. I also remember Bella of Twilight in Mira, in some ways, but I won’t say how because it will spoil you.
Kay is one of the characters here. If I will describe him, he’s fast-learner, dependable, and smart. Kay can quickly react and find some solution in every situation. He is also supportive of his companions, especially with Mira.
Peter. Peter is me, I think lol! He is the bookworm in the group because he likes books. And when he needs to find some answers to every problem they have been experiencing, his always go-to is the books. He knows that books might have the possibility to carry answers to their questions. He is a quiet yet bright kid.
The plot is amazing. And I know that many kids and older readers will enjoy this novel. It offers a variety of things that will surely make you engaged until the end. I hope to see more development in the next book, and I’m looking forward to seeing more about the merrows and other creatures in the story.
Overall, this middle-grade fantasy will surely be loved by MG readers. I am recommending it to anyone who likes MG fantasy and anyone who wants to try MG fantasy.
I received an advance reader’s copy from the author.
Publisher: A.M. Robin
Publication Date: September 1, 2019
Series: Merrows, 01
Genre(s): Middle Grade, Fantasy
A. M. Robin was born and raised in Maryland, where she currently lives and works. She has been working with children in various fields and settings, including brain training, cultural education, and healthcare.