Tuesday, June 9, 2009
The Water Mirror (Dark Relfections, Book 1) by Kai Meyer
Merle is an orphan in Venice in the 1800's. But her Venice is a much different Venice than we know. Of course there is the Doge's palace, the gondolas, the canals and such, but this Venice is also home to stone lions (some with wings) that prowl the city, mermaids with sharks' mouths that swim in the canals, and, of course, the Flowing Queen--a goddess of the mermaids and the source of the canals. Merle and her new found friend (who is blind) Junipa are apprenticed to Arcimboldo--the magic mirror maker. For both girls this apprenticeship means a new found freedom from their orphanage, it also means an end to Junipa's blindness as well (but at a stange cost). While apprenticed at Arcimboldo's shop Merle meets a master thief under the age of fifteen, a mermaid with legs, The Ancient Traiter (the last talking, winged lion), and the Flowing Queen herself! Among many others.
I thouroughly enjoyed The Water Mirror. For the most part it was interesting and had wonderfully crafted world with many inventive creatures, who wouldn't want to ride on the back of a huge, winged, obsidian lion? But although I enjoyed it, the book was strangely put togeteher--some things needed to be explained (although I suppose the author was trying to leave loose ends for the rest of the books in the trilogy to pick up). From what I've heard of the next book in the trilogy, The Stone Light, I'm not sure I want to read it. But The Water Mirror is definitely worth reading if you love well-woven fantasy--which I do.