The Mer Chronicles series by Tobie Easton
I first met Tobie Easton at YALLWest, and I was immediately intrigued by her Mer Chronicles series. The second in the series, SUBMERGE, debuted yesterday. Have a look at the beautiful world she’s created:
Lia Nautilus may be a Mermaid but she’s never lived in the ocean. Ever since the infamous Little Mermaid unleashed a curse that stripped Mer of their immortality, war has ravaged the Seven Seas. Now Lia lives in a secret community of land-dwelling Mer hidden among Malibu’s seaside mansions and attends high school with humans. To protect everyone around her, she must limit her contact with non-Mer. No exceptions. But when the new girl sets her sights on Lia’s crush, she will risk exposing her deadly secret to stop Clay from falling in love with the wrong girl.
Now that Lia and Clay’s love has broken the Little Mermaid’s curse, everything has changed. Will Lia’s family remain on land, leading the only life she and her sisters have ever known, or will they move below the waves, to the sparkling new capital city? Lia is adamant about staying on land with Clay for her senior year. But at Melusine and her father’s trial, new revelations threaten what Lia holds most dear.
The verdict will shake Lia’s whole world, calling into question her future with Clay, her feelings for Caspian, and the fate of all Merkind. As she wonders who to trust, Lia sets out on a treacherous path that will lead her away from her sheltered Malibu home to a remote and mysterious school for Mermaids—Mermaids who may hold the secret to ancient magic Lia can use to either get back all she’s lost or to embark on a thrilling and dangerous journey.
According to your website bio, you host book clubs for teens and tweens. What is the most enjoyable part of this kind of work?
Book clubs are such a wonderful way to foster discussion about the themes of a book, and to get everyone—myself included—considering the story and characters more deeply. My favorite part is probably when there are divergent opinions within the group, which often spark new ideas.
Indeed they do. In SUBMERGE, Lia is forced to face some challenging choices. What do you hope readers will gain from her experience?
This has always been a series about gray area, because learning to cope with gray area is such an essential part of growing up. Lia’s choices are often morally ambiguous for that reason, which I hope will spur readers to question what they themselves would do and why.
That also demonstrates why the character development within your series is so interesting and complex. I love your website! What advice do you have for writers interested in building an online presence?
Thanks so much! I’d say, start simple. Think about what information readers and press will want access to and make sure that information is easy to find on your page. As for design, I aimed for something that fit both my personality and my books. Apart from your website, try out each social media platform (especially the one that scares you—it may surprise you!), then choose the one or two you genuinely enjoy and focus on those so that you can engage in an authentic way.
Excellent advice. What are some of your current projects?
In addition to a few secret projects that it’s too early to talk about, I’m hard at work on Immerse (Book 3 in the Mer Chronicles series). Since the series was always meant to be a trilogy, it’s exciting to finally get to write storylines I’ve been planning for these characters for several years. So far, I’d describe Immerse as intriguing with unexpected romance and even more unexpected magic.