SWEETWATER by Laurence Yep


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Shimmering like the star-charmed Argan music that Tyree learns from the spiderlike alien Amadeus, this is a many faceted vision of the watery city of Old Sion, planet Harmony. The Silkies, who inhabit the waterlogged buildings abandoned by other colonists from Earth, are the outcast descendants of marooned starship pilots, and just as they lost their home among the stars, they are now about to lose their homes in Old Sion to galactic tourism-promoter Fuller Satin and to the Sons of Light, a dissident Silky faction that favor the restoration of electricity and technical expertise. The "touchstone" treasured by Tyree's blind sister Caley turns out to be the ultimate instrument of Old Sion's doom, and if the plot becomes murky on this point (we never do understand why Amadeus would give the little girl such a dangerous present), Yep has set this light adventure in such beautifully evoked surroundings that we can almost hear Tyree playing his unearthly music and see the sparkling cocoon left behind by Amadeus, shining like Caley's realization that when you lose something you like, "you don't let yourself cry for long.
Pub Date: May 1st, 1973
Publisher: Harper & Row
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 1973


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