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When the Sea is Rising Red - Cat Hellisen

When the Sea is Rising Red

Paperback Published: 1st October 2014
ISBN: 9781250050687
Number Of Pages: 304
For Ages: 12 - 14 years old

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A stormy city. A dark magic. A devastating choice.

In sixteen-year-old Felicita's world, magic is strictly controlled - or so those in power like to believe. After her dearest friend, Ilven, kills herself to escape an arranged marriage, Felicita chooses freedom over privilege. She fakes her own death and leaves her sheltered life as one of Pelimburg's magical elite behind.

Living in the slums, scrubbing dishes for a living, she falls for charismatic Dash while also becoming fascinated with vampire Jannik. Then something shocking washes up on the beach: Ilven's death has called out of the sea a dangerous, wild magic.

Felicita must decide whether her loyalties lie with the family she abandoned, or with those who would twist this dark power to destory Pelimburg's caste system, and the whole city along with it.

About the Author

Cat Hellisen lives in Capetown, South Africa, near the sea, and drinks a lot of tea. She tends not to start revolutions. When the Sea Is Rising Red is her first novel.

Industry Reviews

“An intense look at the seeds of rebellion and the individual consequences they sometimes reap.” - BCCB, starred review

“Hellisen creates an interesting world where magic and superstition rule.” - VOYA

“Hellisen's captivating debut will haunt readers.” - School Library Journal

“Debut author Hellisen's style features evocative descriptions and unflinching detail, drawing readers into the unusual and intriguing elements that make up Felicita's socially complex world.” - Publishers Weekly

“World building intrigues, and the open-ended conclusion begs a sequel.” - Kirkus Reviews

“Hellisen's first novel combines the survival tactics of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games books with a fascinating array of magical creatures and powers.” - Booklist



I hunch deeper into the protection of a small copse of stunted blackbarks. Condensed mist drips down the dark leaves and soaks my shawl.

Come on, Ilven. As if I could force her to appear by the power of thought.

Across the close-cropped lawn, House Malker’s gray stone face waits, a patient prison. In just a few days Ilven’s family will ship her off upriver to some Samar wine farmer, and today is the last chance we have to be alone together.

Mother won’t miss me for ages yet - I can risk waiting a few minutes more for Ilven to show. My stomach churns. I hope that no servants saw me leave and that my mother is still at her writing desk, engaged in scribbling long missives to her beloved son, Owen. So beloved, in fact, that he never bothers to leave his town house to see her.

Mother’s schedule is narrow and predictable. Like all the women in the High Houses, her life is ruled by a list of acceptable and appropriate behaviors, all of them dictated to her by men. First her father, then her husband, and now her son. One day that will be my lot, I suppose, and it’s this thought that made me convince Ilven to run off with me into town to be nothing more than free Lammers for a brief afternoon. Excitement swirls in me and my breathing goes tight.

The minutes stretch, and my hands are slick from the cold and the dampness of my clothes.

Ilven’s not going to make it. Her mother, for all that she’s tiny and delicate as a glass doll, is a frightful drake. If that cold witch caught even the slightest wind of Ilven’s jaunt, then my friend is probably locked in her room.

The memory of our last meeting returns to me. It seems a lifetime ago, and yet only a bare few days have passed. Lady Malker’s words are still fresh as I remember the hate I felt when she stared me down, my friend cowering behind her.

ISBN: 9781250050687
ISBN-10: 1250050685
Audience: Teenager / Young Adult
For Ages: 12 - 14 years old
For Grades: 7 - 9
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 304
Published: 1st October 2014
Publisher: Palgrave USA
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 20.32 x 12.7  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.45

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