The Mermaid Hypothesis (2016 Watty Award Win...
In the year 2020, the music industry is dead. A new technology called SirenSong has gone viral and wiped out every major record label on the planet. (Justin Bieber? Long forgotten. One Direction? Went on hiatus and never came back...)
An out-of-work record exec and his grandson Zac are on a crusade to find the one voice that can break the SirenSong spell and save the music business. When Zac encounters a girl named Ari, the connection between them is instant. There's something very different about her. Something special. Could Ari be the girl that they've been seeking? If only he could find a way to hear her sing. . . .
Unfortunately, Ari has been dealing her whole life with a condition called Selective Mutism. She can speak (and sing) when alone, but not around other people. Her doctors attribute her condition to anxiety in the wake of a childhood trauma. But Ari isn't so sure about that diagnosis. If her problem is really an anxiety disorder, then why has every psychiatric treatment in the book failed to help her? She can't help but dwell on the similar plight of her namesake and favorite Disney character, Ariel from The Little Mermaid. That Ari couldn't speak in front of other human beings either. Not until she found the love of a handsome prince.
Is Zac the one who can unlock her hidden secrets? Will he turn her life into a retelling of her favorite fairytale? Or will her unhealthy obsession with all-things-mermaid lead Ari to nothing but heartache - or worse yet, to a watery grave.