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Sea Changes

by Gail Graham


Sarah Andrews lives in Australia, but she is still an American at heart.  She has remained in Australia after the sudden death of her husband to stay close to her daughter.  Yet her daughter doesn't understand why after two years Sarah can't put the past behind her and get on with the future.  Even Sarah's psychologist isn't too much help.  He listens but does not provide any practical suggestions for her, and after two years of sessions, Sarah feels discouraged and alone.

Finally deciding that there is no purpose to continuing to live a life that feels meaningless, Sarah makes the decision to walk out as far as she can into the sea, and drown herself.  Yet this plan works no better than her life on land has been working.  Sarah cannot drown!  She can breathe both air and water and survive.  Seeing the face of a young woman, Sarah is drawn by this woman to an undersea world.  The woman, Bantryd, brings her to meet her uncle, Xaxanader, and she discovers what seems to be an entire alternate reality under the water. Sarah can't help but wonder if this is all a hallucination, perhaps brought on by her own death.  A return trip proves that the undersea society exists.

Bantryd tells her that she is alive, and is one of the select who can survive in both worlds.  Sarah is what is called a vestigant, and she is the last one alive.  Bantryd's mother was also a vestigant and she left the sea to live with humans, and now Bantryd wants to find her and needs Sarah's help. Once Bantryd returns to land with her, the plot takes many different paths and the reader will be in for surprises and intrigue that blur the genre line for this book between fantasy, a tad of mystery, and light romance and suspense.

Once the reader becomes involved in this book, it can easily overtake you with the need to keep on reading until you have discovered all of its secrets.  It is a long book at 401 pages, and not altogether an easy read.  If your mind wanders even a bit, you may find yourself confused and needing to backtrack. This is not necessarily a bad thing. I found that by rereading some paragraphs or pages, they took on new meaning, and I had a new understanding of the story.

I highly recommend this book as a great summer read.  You'll need the time and quiet to reflect on the amazing tale and absorb the finer nuances.  This book could become one that you will want to read again every few years as a tradition because it may have new meaning for you at various stages of your life.  Excellent job by author Gail Graham!

The Book

Jade Phoenix Publishing
May 2009
Fiction / General
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The Reviewer

Laura Hinds
Reviewed 2009
NOTE: Reviewer Laura Hinds is an experienced freelance writer whose first novel, "Are You Gonna Eat That Banana?", just came out in 2009.
© 2009