Win a signed copy of Real Mermaids! Details at the end of this post.


I bolted upright in the bathtub and hacked a mouthful of water. A wave sloshed onto the tile floor.

“Jade?” Dad’s knock sounded from the other side of the bathroom door. “You okay, honey?”

“Yea…yeah,” I managed to say between coughs, embar­rassed that I’d fallen asleep in the tub, freaked out that I must have slipped underwater. I took a long, shaky breath. “I’m fine, Dad. Thanks.”

A shiver ran along my damp arm as I pulled a strand of hair from my mouth. What would have happened if I hadn’t woken up? My thoughts turned instantly to Mom.

No. I couldn’t go there…

“Can I get you anything?” Dad asked.

I rubbed my eyes and instantly regretted it. Epsom salt. Tear ducts. Ye-owch. Real smooth, Jade. But at least the cramps were gone.

“No, I’m good.” I blinked through the haze to the coun­ter where Dad’s drugstore bag spilled over with Super Maxi 32-packs and extra-long panty liners. Hadn’t I tortured the poor guy enough for one day?

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


About the book:

First zit. First crush. First…mermaid’s tail?

If she hadn’t been so clueless, she might have seen it coming. But really, who expects to get into a relaxing bathtub after a stressful day of shopping for tankinis and come out with scales and a tail?

Most. Embarrassing. Moment. Ever.

Jade soon discovers she inherited her mermaid tendencies from her mom. But this revelation raises a serious question: if Mom was a mermaid, how did she drown?

Jade is determined to find out. But how does a plus-sized, aqua-phobic, mer-girl go about doing that, exactly? And how will Jade ever be able to explain her secret to her best friend Cori, and her crush, Luke?

This summer is about to get a lot more interesting…

What people are saying:

“Ms. Boudreau writes knowingly about the political minefield of adolescent girl relationships and surging guy-crushes, and she puts Jade in quite a crucible: Trying to solve the mystery of her mother’s death, pass high school, keep her friends, win the guy—and not morph into a fish in public. The author is savvy enough to have left a few threads loose, and she has built enough conflict in the nascent mermaid world to warrant a very nice sequel. Oh, it’s never easy to be a 14-year-old girl. Bravo to Hélène Boudreau for hitting the bull’s-eye with a fresh, affectionate, watery twist on the classic coming-of-age-story.” – The New York Journal of Books

“…the author keeps suspense high and her prose moving while tapping straight into young teens’ angst about friends, enemies and boys.” –Kirkus Reviews

“REAL MERMAIDS DON’T WEAR TOE RINGS is an unputdownable adventure, part Judy Blume, part Hans Christian Anderson, and 100% delightful, this fun, fresh tale (tail?) will have girls begging for a sequel.” -The YA-5

Released: December 1, 2010 by Sourcebooks

About the author:

Hélène Boudreau grew up on an island surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean but now writes fiction and non-fiction for kids from her land-locked home in Ontario, Canada.

She has never time-travelled or saved an endangered bird, nor has she ever spotted a mermaid in the wild, but she believes mermaids are just as plausible as sea horses, flying fish, or electric eels.

Her debut middle grade novel, Acadian Star, was nominated for the 2009-2010 Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award.

Win a copy:

Hélène has been kind enough to contribute a signed copy of Real Mermaids Don’t Wear Toe Rings for a giveaway!

To enter simply leave a comment on this post.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower of this site (just click “Join this site”) or a follower on Twitter [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada and ends on January 17th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!