For the Love of Mermaids

by Debbie Herbert, author of Siren’s Secret (Harlequin Nocturne, November 2013)

Mermaids. Murder. Mayhem.

It all melds together in my debut novel, Siren’s Secret.  The premise of the book – a mermaid who catches a serial killer dumping a body at sea – stemmed from a dream.  In it, I swam in deep water and saw a man dumping something out of a boat.  I swam for a closer look, but stopped as I sensed this person was evil . . . and then I woke up.  That’s when the what if questions played in my head.  What if I were a mermaid?  What was the man on the boat up to? What if he hunted me down?  And, how far would I go to protect my secrets?

I’ve always been fascinated by the idea of mermaids, probably stemming from plenty of childhood vacations at the beach.  I imagined mermaids did fun things like frolic with dolphins, collect shells and treasures, and ride the waves.  Very Disney-esque.

As an adult, I continue to be intrigued by mermaids.  I see them as symbols of feminine power and beauty.  They inhabit the sea, and water symbolically represents the feminine – deep emotions, intuition and the subconscious. Ancient cultures had stories of female water goddesses and mermaids.  The mythology dates back 30,000 years, as evidenced by Stone Age paintings depicting creatures with female torsos and fish-like trunks.

My love for fantasy and magic has never dimmed.  I enjoy paranormal books because there is always some mystery or surprise lurking beneath the most mundane human activities.  And I think that in exploring other worlds and creatures, we define what it means to be human and discover who we truly are.

Does the idea of mermaids intrigue you?  Why do you enjoy reading paranormal romance?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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Harlequin’s art department gave us a behind-the-scenes look at the underwater cover shoot for Siren’s Secret! Click here to read about how the cover was made.

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2 Responses to For the Love of Mermaids

  1. Thanks so much for the opportunity and a special thanks to Editor Ann Leslie Tuttle

  2. Wendy Beck

    Mermaids! Yes! Loved this book.