Dry ground is a dream, one owned by few on Terra II. Ever since losing contact with Earth, much of the surviving human colony has known nothing but life on the open water. Land is for the ruling class who govern the planet and regulate trade, a place the seaborn have never seen. For them, survival in the harsh conditions of open water and the dangers rampant in the floating cities is a daily struggle. For some, the wavelanders, survival comes at a cost of personal freedoms, where the community thrives due to its strict traditions. For Nerida, life as a wavelander means marriage to a man she hates and whom she will do anything to escape. Although travel alone in the expanse of the Greater Sea means certain death from pirates and the creatures that dwell out there, it is a risk she is willing to take. Despite the risks, it is also a life of loneliness and isolation until she is saved by a being who rises from the depths. A male unlike any other she has ever seen before. He calls her his mate but a possible future between them is threatened when she is forced to confront everything she ran from.
Ji’wa is a Sirein who is plagued with responsibilities in a life that he never wanted. For generations, the Sirei have lived in spaceships looking for a new home for their species after escaping a dying world. When dire situations force them to make their home on a watery world dotted with land, the orders are to stay clear of the dangers above the seas and especially far away from the beings who dwell above the waves. When Ji’wa saves a finless land-dweller, he cannot forget the strange being nor ignore the call of the mating bond. Attempting to mate with the alien female carries many risks, but he will embrace them all for a chance to be with her…but will he be able to claim his mate before the sea demands his return?
Life on the open water sounds tough for Nerida, a wavelander. Not only that, she’s promised to a man that makes her skin crawl. Escape means a life alone on the water and many dangers. Ji’wa and his people discover Terra II and have just arrived with plans to make it their home, after generations in star ships. Ji’wa is fascinated with Nerida and follows her. He saves her from dangerous sea life and pirates. Nerida has activated Ji’wa’s mating instinct and he has limited time. Ji’wa is willing to sacrifice everything for her. Along the way we also get to know Ji’wa’s best friend, Ger’se. Sanders gave us some hints at his story, too. I’m hoping that’s coming in 2021!
I really enjoyed this book. It was reminiscent of Tiffany Roberts’ Kraken series, which I love. The artwork on the cover of this book really brings Ji’wa alive. I referenced it several times while reading. Sanders creates some good suspense which made it a real page-turner. A must-read for all of you mermaid/mermen fans! 4 stars