Deep Water is a book that is deceptive in its opening. Danni comes home to find that her mother has disappeared; all that is left is a pool of salty water in the kitchen. At first she isn’t too worried but as time carries on she is forced to go and stay with her father, a hippy who runs a crystal shop in Cornwall. As she spends time there she is confused why some members of the community are so unfriendly towards her. Then her mother is found lying naked on a beach without any memory.
Here the story turns from a thrilling whodunit into a fantasy of old magic and grudges. Danni’s family are seal people, or selkies. They can change their form into seals and have a yearning to go to the water. Danni’s mother has hated the gift and hoped that if she moved Danni away she wouldn’t succumb. And it seems that her mother’s life hangs in the balance because of a pastor who was imprisoned after killing a child during an exorcism and has returned to the area.
This is an excellent read that turns neatly from thriller to magical fantasy but still keeps up the pace and the mystery. There are some stock characters, for example the former best friend turned enemy because of her unrequited love for the pastor, but the plot is none the worse for that. This is a good read for anyone who enjoys a thriller or a bit of Celtic fantasy.