Admittedly, I was skeptical at first. I always am when I start reading a genre that isn’t my usual fare. But, given a little time my skepticism began to wane and Whispers From The Depths became one of those books I had to get back to reading any chance I got.
Tosna, Betka, and Asi are Whisperers. They speak to and control the waters of their land, but enslavement by an invading force have made the three young women prisoners. Their powers can be used for something as minor as stirring a cup of tea to calming a raging storm at sea. They can be used for good, or for evil – but using them for evil will only bring enormous suffering to the Whisperer itself. This keeps them in check, a fact their captors use to every advantage.
When Betka is given the chance to find, and she hopes, to rescue her sister Tosna who was taken away when they were children, she finds herself aboard a ship with fellow Whisperer, Asi. All too soon things start to go horribly wrong. The water spirit seems both enraged and absent at the same time. They cannot hear it. They cannot control it. At their final destination, the castle were Betka’s sister was taken, they find death and destruction everywhere.
This started a bit slow for me, while Briar mapped out the backstory and led me through a series of odd place names and events that I couldn’t seem to link to each other. I had a hard time keeping the character names straight, who was good, who was bad, who was somewhere in the middle. But this was really the only distracting flaw. Briar’s writing is both complex and simple at the same time, descriptive without being overly so, moving the plot forward at a pace that started somewhat plodding and confusing, but ramped up page by page until I wasn’t able to read as quickly as I wanted to.
Well written, well edited, and well worth the time for any Fantasy reader.
Raven Rating: 4 out of 5 Caws.
The Raven Scale:
1 Raven: Yuck! Don’t eat that.
2 Ravens: Bread crumbs, but it’ll keep us alive.
3 Ravens: Oh, hey! Peanuts, popcorn and cat kibble!
4 Ravens: Lunch time pizza place dumpster. Hell, yeah!
5 Ravens: Holy Shit, Fellas! Fresh Road Kill!