Antara - Marilena Mexi The storyline: Antara is a Fantasy Fairytale in classical style, with much adventure, magical elements, good versus evil and a good dose of romance. It is a completely original and unique tale; I am sure you have never heard or read a mermaid story like this one before. There is an island, where half of it is inhabited by “Merfolk” and the other half by humans. These two groups have co-existed in piece for many generations; until a huge catastrophe caused by mysterious sources strikes that peaceful place, transforming it into a scenery of war and suffering. Merfolk and humans turn into enemies and hell is broke lose until something bigger and stronger stopped it: love. Through the love of Asteria, a mermaid, queen of the merfolk and Orestis, king of the humans, piece is restored and the island of Aster becomes once again the paradise it was before.

The illustrations: The book is filled with gorgeous digital paintings, by Marilena herself. You see beautiful concepts of the environments present in the story. Portraits and character concepts help us understanding how they looked and having a better sense of the characters in the story as well. Just by looking at the images, we can travel deeper through the tale as we let our imagination flow. The illustrations also contribute to our sense of enjoyment while reading though the pages of Antara.

In general: This is a book I had a wonderful time reading. I was curious all the time to understand what caused the evil catastrophe to hit the island of Aster. I was very curious as well to know what would happen next, how the story would develop and unfold. I enjoyed very much going through the illustrations and having a glimpse of what that world looked like. There are some issues with the English translation; though this is a minor detail if you’re looking for an enjoyable and unique read on your free time.