When Ellie pulls the boy from out of the whale’s stomach, she sets in motion events that threaten to destroy The City. Once more the Enemy has found a Vessel who will enable it to take on a body. But Ellie, herself, has an enemy or is he her friend, her brother? Who is this mystery boy, Seth? Ellie is convinced he is not the Enemy…but then who is?
This is a richly imagined fantasy full of action and jeopardy. The author does not dwell too much on the background; the City and its sea-based world is presented fully fledged and its antecedents and history are revealed through dialogue, asides and events as the story unfolds. We are immersed in a world where Inquisitors rule, always on the lookout for manifestations of The Enemy – a real entity who has caused destruction in the past but who requires a human ‘Vessel’ to come fully alive. Can it be defeated? The action takes place in a teeming urban setting, reminiscent of a Dickensian London. Ellie is an independent character determined to follow her mother’s footsteps as an engineer and inventor. The sea is source of livelihood – and once there were the gods of the sea. Both Ellie and Seth have hidden pasts and memories that they are either suppressing or cannot access. It is their secrets that will provide the final twist to this plot-driven story. An immersive, intriguing, action-packed narrative from a debut author; recommended.