Review: A Discerning Heart


Jim Moore is a handsome fisherman, dubbed “Dim Jim” by his peers. With no family around, he finds himself alone, poor, and fed up with his life.

Enough was enough. He couldn’t live like this any longer. He was so tired of the way these people treated him. No one in the village respected him and they demeaned him whenever possible. He was fed up.”

The town of Kirriemuire had never been kind to Jim. The other fishermen shunned him or made fun of him and the women ignored him. He had to do something to change his life, but what? He decides that traveling to the dangerous Devil’s Bowl to capture the elusive Green Tail is the only way to gain the respect of the town. Travel to the area proves to be just as dangerous as expected and Jim finds himself close to death when  a wave knocks him off his boat into the water.  Just that quickly a mission to capture the Green Tail ends up in him being saved and captured by the Green Tail. The Green Tail,  who his a mermaid named Merrow rescues him from drowning and puts him on an island where it is near to impossible to escape. For years, Jim and Merrow live isolated on the island. Jim finally has love, respect, and riches. Moreover, he has the Journal of Captain Frank Sexton that helps him discover a new identity. Jim has everything he has ever wanted, but is it enough or will the desire to seek revenge on everyone at Kirriemuire overpower his desire to stay on the island where he has built his new life with Merrow?


I was fascinated by the inclusion of Merrow as a mermaid in the story. I also liked that there was some information provided on how mermaid life differed from human life.  The characters were well developed and I loved how Patti took the time to give background information on them all. Every time I thought I had an idea of what was going to happen, it was a different outcome. I loved that it was not a predictable story. The overall message of the story was also great, which was that all the riches and possessions in world cannot not fix what is broken internally.

Jim’s quest for revenge was well put together and thought out and even though he did awful things to people, it was still hard not to sympathize with him after all he had endured. In a sense, his story was relatable in understanding how the world can make you hard and cold towards others.


I would have loved to have read more about Merrow and her life as a mermaid.


I read this book in a day an a half because I could not put it down. It was really a great read and totally different from the typical love story that I thought I was going to read. I recommend this book to those who enjoy books within the Fantasy/Romance genre. You definitely want to add it to your summer reading list.

5 out of 5 stars.