When you think of mermaids, you probably think of The Little Mermaid’s Ariel earnestly yearning to be “a part of your world.” What you probably don’t think of is a merman dragging himself along rocks and sand to a wagon so that he can be carried to a house on Venice Beach where he will have sex with a woman who is obsessed with love.
And yet, that’s exactly what happens in Melissa Broder’s new novel The Pisces.
The Pisces follows Lucy, a student who has been working on her dissertation about Sappho for nine years with no sign of finishing. Lucy’s world is turned upside down when she and her boyfriend break up and she learns that she has to finish her dissertation over the summer or she’ll lose her school funding. Worried, Lucy’s sister Annika invites Lucy to spend the summer living and dog-sitting in her house in Venice Beach where Lucy can get away from the stress of her program, work on her dissertation, go to therapy, and recover from her breakup. Reluctantly, Lucy goes, and everything seems normal. Read more…