The prince is Prince James. However, he has a personality and nobler feelings, unlike his counterpart in The Little Mermaid, and he's been best friends with Pearl ever since he felt the need to escape the cage of his royal life. The combination of a prince who doesn't want to be a prince and a girl who doesn't know she's a mermaid create the necessary suspense to propel the story forward. The truth behind Pearl's past and all other secrets in the plot are eventually revealed without spoiling the way the author propagates her idea of how the tale of The Little Mermaid may have developed into its current version. Moreover, Debbie Viguié's narrative is very, very romantic; she has numerous love triangles and she emphasizes the power of true love very strongly with the love scenes (nothing graphic or overly sentimental) and almost-love scenes between her main characters, both mer-people and humans.
Midnight Pearls is a romance with adventure and genuine characters, and together they comprise a solid background for this soulful re-imagining of The Little Mermaid. It was unjust in the original that the little mermaid died while her beloved prince lived "happily ever after," unaware of her sacrifice and devotion. It is secretly pleasing that Andersen's themes of death and mortality were left out of Viguié's retelling, and only the immortality of love was kept as a viable concept that heightens the novel's happy ending for all romantic couples. While perhaps not as serious as its predecessor, Midnight Pearls re-opens the undersea world of the mer-people once again and unites them with humans in a memorable fantasy.