Wild Blue Under by Judi Fennell

Wild Blue Under
Judi Fennell
Sourcebooks, Inc.
November, 2009

Rod Tritone is all set to take over the Mer kingdom when his father retires, until the ruling council tells him he has to marry first. The council gives him legs for the duration of his mission, as well as his future queen’s address and phone number. 

She’s Valerie Dumere, the daughter of a Mer father and a human mother who raised her in landlocked Kansas. When devastatingly handsome Rod Tritone shows up and tries to tell her about the kingdom under the sea, not only does she think he’s crazy, she’s determined that’s the last place she’d ever want to go. 

Then a vicious squad of seagulls tries to stop the Mer Prince from inheriting his throne and Val finds out about her true nature. Now she has to make the choice of a lifetime—stay on land, or follow Rod to his underwater world…

The following is an excerpt from Wild Blue Under by Judi Fennell. Meet Maybelle and Adele, two busybody sparrows who give Neighborhood Watch a whole new meaning and who play an important role in the story without ever even meeting Rod and Valerie. 

       Tap, tap, tap.

       “Should we tell him, Maybelle?” The two sparrows shared their breakfast, huddled beneath Adele’s weathervane in hopes of both avoiding the nasty weather that was rolling in with the clouds and finding out why that herring gull was back, this time tapping the outside of Valerie’s window.

       “No. I don’t think so.”

       “But it’s her window.”

       “I know.”

       “But then she’ll find out we can talk.”

       Maybelle closed her eyes as a particularly blustery wind kicked up. “No—she’ll find out he can talk.”

       “I don’t understand you, Maybelle.”

       Tap, tap, tap.

       “Do you remember Foghorn, Adele? My third mate?”

       “The one with the big—”

       “Uh huh.” Maybelle’s shudder had nothing to do with the weather. “Don’t remind me. The day he lost that tail feather was the happiest day of my life.”

       “But what does that have to do with Valerie?”

       “Well, Foggy always thought he knew what was best. The best place for bread crumbs, the right park bench for Fiddle Faddle…” The sparrows paused a moment to remember the lovely, buttery taste of their favorite treat. “The fastest way to cross Grove Street, where to get the plumpest sunflower seeds… everything. That male was an authority on everything.”

       “I still don’t see—”

       “Pay attention, Adele! Foggy thought he knew what was best and would never consider anything else, least of all what a female had to say or what she ought to know.”

       Tap, tap, tap.

       “Those two males over there aren’t planning to tell her the truth.”

       Adele gasped. “That sunflowers don’t really grow in your stomach if you eat the seeds in their shells?”

       Maybelle rolled her eyes. “No. Not that. They’re not going to tell her she’s a Mer.”

       “How do you know? You can’t possibly hear anything. The air cooler is on, and they’ve shut all the windows.”

       “Oh… well… I might have overheard—”

       “Maybelle Merriweather!” Adele’s high-pitched chirp soared an octave. “You did not go over there and eavesdrop!”

       “No, actually, I eave-sat. And a good thing, too, or we’d be telling Mr. Flying High there that he’s beaking up the wrong window, and she won’t learn the truth.”

       “This wouldn’t have anything to do with that gull telling you to mind your own business when you followed him yesterday, would it?”

       Maybelle fluffed her feathers, then set to preening them. Honestly, it was so blustery today, what with the wind tossing up all sorts of particles. And she’d just groomed herself…

“Of course not, Adele. And he didn’t tell me to mind my own business. He said it wasn’t any of my business. Which, of course, is wrong since this is my street and we don’t want any riffraff moving in.”

       She glared at the big, hulking gull. “Males! They think they’re the gods’ gift to females. And now he’s got The Heir treating Valerie as if she were a featherhead…” Maybelle tsk’d. “No. We girls need to stick together, and she deserves to know what she’s getting into.”

What people are saying about Wild Blue Under: 

“Fennell returns with another underwater adventure, her second story about the Tritone brothers. She’s proving herself to be a solid storyteller, and this tale is an enjoyable and pleasant read.” –-Devon Paige, RT BookReviews Magazine.com 

“Wild Blue Under” is the second book of author, Judi Fennell’s Mer Trilogy, and the first of hers I have read and definitely won’t be the last! This book was such a fun, delightful read.” –-Jaime, Revenge of the Book Nerds

“Bubbly fun! Judi Fennell whips together talking birds, princely peril and a sexy Mer man in this sparkling ‘under the sea’ tale.” —Virginia Kantra, USA Today best-selling author 

About The Author:

Judi Fennell has had her nose in a book and her head in some celestial realm all her life, including those early years when her mom would exhort her to “get outside!” instead of watching Bewitched or I Dream of Jeannie on television. So she did–right into Dad’s hammock with her Nancy Drew books. 

These days she’s more likely to have her nose in her laptop and her head (and the rest of her body) at her favorite bookstore, but she’s still reading, whether it be her latest manuscript or friends’ books. 

A three-time finalist in online contests, Judi has enjoyed the reader feedback she’s received and would love to hear what you think about her Mer series. Check out her website at www.JudiFennell.com for excerpts, reviews and fun pictures from reader and writer conferences, and the chance to “dive in” to her stories.