by Valorie Lord
Thirteen-year-old Jake is an ordinary boy, much like any other boy. Except maybe he’s a bit short. And he doesn’t like spiders or snakes.
He does like the ocean though, and when he gets to visit his dad on a (supposedly) deserted tropical island and discovers a submarine hidden under the house, all he can think about is taking it down and exploring. But when he gets his chance, will he make the discovery of his life, or the biggest mistake ever?
Unlike Jake, Cori actually lives in the ocean, but he’s never gotten to explore it either. He’s always dreamed of seeing the endless, mysterious waters beyond the caves of Chantrea, so he’s thrilled when he’s sent on a mission into the great Outside.
But Cori’s mission isn’t the adventure he’d hoped for. Now he must hide from predators and fight for his life, and he may never find his way home. Even if he can, it may be too late…
“This book is a great adventure that all ages will love!”
“It is so well thought out, taking you places you would dream of going. This book should be an instant success.”
“What a great sea adventure – submarines, sea horses, under ocean cities, great reading for boys and girls alike.”
CIR: What did you enjoy most about writing this?
LORD: A few times when deep in ‘the zone’, writing as quickly as the scene came to me, I nearly jumped out of my chair when something I hadn’t consciously intended to write appeared – as if the character had come alive and taken over the keyboard. That’s fun!
CIR: Who is your favorite character and why?
LORD: That’s a tough one… either Nico or Cori, but probably Tiia in the long run. Cori because he lives in my fantasy world and gets to go adventuring; Nico because that’s the person I always imagined myself to be, but really wasn’t. And Tiia… well, you’ll see in about six months when the next book comes out!
CIR: Did this require any research, and what kind?
LORD: I spent months researching deep water submarines, many, many sea creatures, pacific islands, indigenous plants, etc… and ended up using almost none of it. But I learned a lot!
CIR: What would you compare this book to?
LORD: It’s a sort of Swiss Family Robinson meets Captain Nemo meets Nemo. (old fashioned type adventure meets suspense and danger meets cute sea creatures)
CIR: What message do you hope your readers will get out of this book?
LORD: That anything is possible in the deep ocean (perhaps even a Chantrea!), because we don’t yet know all that’s down there (an estimated 95% of the deep is still a mystery). And I hope the story helps someone, somewhere, fall in love with the ocean the way I did when I was 12 and first imagined this world.
Learn more about Valorie Lord and her writing at www.valorielord.com