The Lake Michigan Mermaid: A Tale in Poems

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By Linda Nemec Foster and Anne-Marie Oomen

Illustrated by Meridith Ridl

The Lake Michigan Mermaid is a new tale that feels familiar. The breeze off the lake, the sand underfoot, the supreme sadness of being young and not in control—these sensations come rushing back page by page, bringing to life an ancient myth of coming of age in a troubled world. Freed from the minds of Linda Nemec Foster and Anne-Marie Oomen, The Lake Michigan Mermaid serves as a voice of reason for when we’re caught in the riptide.

This is a gripping tale in poems of a young girl’s desperate search for guidance in a world turned upside down by family and economic upheaval. Raised in a ramshackle cottage on the shores of Lake Michigan, Lykretia takes refuge in her beloved lake in the face of her grandmother’s illness and her mother’s eager attempts to sell their home following her recent divorce. One day Lykretia spots a creature in the water, something beautiful and inexplicable. Is it the mythical Lake Michigan mermaid, or an embodiment of the stories her grandmother told as dementia ravaged her mind? Thus begins a telepathic conversation between a lost young girl and Phyliadellacia, the mermaid who saves her in more ways than one.

Accompanied by haunting illustrations, The Lake Michigan Mermaid offers a tender tale of friendship, redemption, and the life-giving power of water. As it explores family relationships and generational bonds, this book is an unforgettable experience that aims to connect readers of all ages.

Hardcover, 64 pages, 30 color illustrations

Dimensions: 6-1/4 x 8-1/4 x 5/8 inches

An earthy, bittersweet fable, told in shimmering glimpses, of four hearts searching for connection -- with each other, and with what is beyond their understanding. Oomen and Foster weave their magical tale out of beach grass and ribbon, out of sorrow and joy, out of water, sand, and ice. – Lynne Rae Perkins, Newbery-winning author of Criss Cross