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In Great Watersby Kit Whitfield
Synopses & Reviews
During a time of great upheaval, the citizens of Venice make a pact that will change the world. The landsmen of the city broker a treaty with a water-dwelling tribe of deepsmen, cementing the alliance through marriage. The mingling of the two races produces a fresh, peerless strain of royal blood. To protect their shores, other nations make their own partnerships with this new breed-and then, jealous of their power, ban any further unions between the two peoples. Dalliance with a deepswoman becomes punishable by death. Any “bastard” child must be destroyed.
This is an Earth where the legends of the deep are true-where the people of the ocean are as real and as dangerous as the people of the land. This is the world of intrigue and betrayal that Kit Whitfield brings to life in an unforgettable alternate history: the tale of Anne, the youngest princess of a faltering England, struggling to survive in a troubled court, and Henry, a bastard abandoned on the shore to face his bewildering destiny, finding himself a pawn in a game he does not understand.
Yet even a pawn may checkmate a king.
"Whitfield (Benighted) creates a fantasy Earth both instantly recognizable and drastically changed: history was altered by the deepsmen, merfolk who first made an appearance at Venice during the Middle Ages and now, a few centuries later, control the seas. They insist that earthly rulers be part-deepsmen, placing halfbreed children such as Henry, terrified to be washed up on shore after five years underwater, and Anne, a king's clumsy granddaughter, in play for the English throne. The tale's style is formal and historical, packed thick with detail both overt and subtle. Anne is convincing as 'inconvenient' royalty, the kind the family would rather forget, while Henry embodies the deepsmen's unhuman priorities and desires. Supporting characters, most neither wholly good nor wholly wicked, are given in stark, memorable detail. Fans of English history, dense prose and high-level political maneuvering will love it." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Set in the past, with a twist, "In Great Waters" features a race of mer-people--men and women who have evolved to live in the oceans--that protects the coast of each country against attacks from the others.
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