A stunning debut perfect for fans of Patrick Ness and Neil Gaiman!
The Danek is a wild, treacherous river, and the Fobisher family has tended it for generations—clearing it of ice and weed, making sure boats can get through, and fishing corpses from its bleak depths. Wulliam's father, the current Riverkeep, is proud of this work. Wull dreads it. And in one week, when he comes of age, he will have to take over.
Then the unthinkable happens. While recovering a drowned man, Wull's father is pulled under—and when he emerges, he is no longer himself. A dark spirit possesses him, devouring him from the inside. In an instant, Wull is Riverkeep. And he must care for his father, too.
When he hears that a cure for his father lurks in the belly of a great sea-dwelling beast known as the mormorach, he embarks on an epic journey down the river that his family has so long protected—but never explored. Along the way, he faces death in any number of ways, meets people and creatures touched by magic and madness and alchemy, and finds courage he never knew he possessed.
Martin Stewart's debut novel is an astonishing blend of the literary, the comedic, and the emotionally resonant. In a sentence, it's The Wizard of Oz as told by Patrick Ness. It marks the beginning of a remarkable career.
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"Narrator James Cosmo's rich, raspy tones immerse listeners in the darkly humorous world created by debut novelist Martin Stewart. Wulliam, almost 16, dreads taking up the family mantle of riverkeep, clearing the mythical DanŽk of ice, debris, and corpses. But when his beloved Pappa is possessed by an evil spirit, Wull sets off on an epic quest to find a cure. Along the way, he collects a motley crew of characters, whose exploits and snappy dialogue are aptly portrayed in Cosmo's accented narration. Cosmo guides listeners through the labyrinthine story and serves as a skilled interpreter of the knotty dialect. His brisk reading keeps this comedic adventure moving at a thoroughly engaging clip. S.G. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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