Of Orr's debut, The World in Amber, Kirkus wrote ""light, fresh, charming, and unpretentious."" Regrettably, this sequel is both unnecessary and severely disappointing, as Orr forgets basic science, runs out of ideas, and generally stretches a thin plot into transparency. Unaccountably, the sea level is rising, threatening to inundate the land of Phar-Tracil; so it's up to young sorcerer lame--he has wild magic, not under his control, and it acts only as circumstances dictate--to determine what's going on. In his search for the source of the problem, Isme must rely on his purely human skills (his wild magic is no help) and realizes that, even though immortal, he depends on simple human contact to keep him sane and compassionate. Eventually, he discovers that some giant fire-worms are breaking up and melting the icecap; the fire-worms have been created by a couple of sorcerers who, disdaining the company of mortals, have become utterly indifferent to the consequences of their actions. The few good ideas here would have been better employed in creating something new and un-Amber-ish-and this represents a step backward for a very promising talent.