Coming Up for Air (Kirstin’s Review)

Title: Coming Up for Air
Author: Amanda Meuwissen
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: April 30th, 2019
Genre(s): Romance, Fantasy
Page Count: 200
Reviewed by: Kirstin
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5


It’s not easy being someone’s fairy tale.

Leigh Hurley is making a name for himself among thieves and criminals, even if it isn’t the life he would’ve chosen. He shouldn’t have screwed over the Moretti brothers, though. It landed him in the river with weights on his feet. But somehow he’s escaped certain death. The last thing he remembers before waking on the riverbank is a beautiful face and a soft kiss.

Then, Tolomeo turns up naked at Leigh’s apartment.

Tolly comes from a race of killers—merfolk who drown humans for fun. But Tolly is different, and when he sees a human in trouble, he offers a kiss, granting the man the ability to breathe underwater… and himself the ability to walk on land, at least until the next full moon. The ancient laws state that if he is given a vow of love by the one he kissed, he will be able to keep his legs. If not, he will be put to death when he returns to the water.

But love is not something Leigh offers easily… and Tolly has a secret of his own.

This book totally made me happy dance!!

It was sentimentally romantic. Romantically sentimental? It was super sweet and cute and there were mermaid tails and mobsters and cops and robbers and learning sign language to ask out a crush and monsters with claws. In short, it was perfect.

When Leigh is fitted with concrete boots and thrown into the water, he’s pretty sure it’s over. Then he sees a man swimming towards him, then kiss him. And then he’s laying on solid ground again. And now he’s got a merfolk named Tolly who has legs and/or a tail. And he’s his. To own and to have forever and ever. At least, if the mob doesn’t kill Leigh first. Or the spell isn’t broken that will take Tolly’s legs away forever.

I’m seriously so hyped on this story. I am amazed and astounded and aflutter at how much this moved me to feel. I fell in love with Tolly instantly, then with Leigh about 2 minutes later. I never once questioned the story. I never once questioned their feelings. It was all there, laid out, plain as day in words and dialogue and gestures and glances and sighs.

I loved Alvin. He’s the best friend/mob boss son/brother from another mother to Leigh. He was so damn sweet and funny and awed by everything.

There was humor and action and suspense and explosions and sex. There was fun dialogue…

“I’ll bring the forks. Do you know what a fork–”

“Yes. I am not the little mermaid.”

This was like nothing I’ve read before and I just want to read it again for the first time. Magical and whimsical and an utter delight.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Coming Up for Air provided by author in exchange of an honest review.


Reading has become such a huge part of my life as an adult. I love the escape, but I also try to take something from each story for myself. I am a lover of words. I love dialogue. I love a slow burn and a happy ever after.

Favorite Authors: Garrett Leigh, Amy Lane, Mary Calmes, Lane Hayes, T.J. Klune, Roan Parrish, N.R. Walker, Cara Dee, Anyta Sunday

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