As soon as Sophie Hansa returned to our world, she is anxious to once again go back to Stormwrack. Unable to discuss the wondrous sights she has seen, and unable to tell anyone what happened to her in her time away, Sophie is in a holding pattern, focused entirely on her eventual chance to return.
With the sudden arrival of Garland Parrish, Sophie is once again gone. This time, she has been called back to Stormwrack in order to spend time with her father, a Duelist-Adjudicator, who is an unrivaled combatant and fearsome negotiator. But is he driven by his commitment to seeing justice prevail, or is he a sociopath? Soon, she discovers something repellent about him that makes her reject him, and everything he is offering.
Adrift again, she discovers that her time spent with her father is not without advantages, however, for Sophie has discovered there is nothing to stop her from setting up a forensic institute in Stormwrack, investigating cases that have been bogged down in the courts, sometimes for years. Her fresh look into a long-standing case between two of the islands turns up new information that could get her, and her friends, pulled into something bold and daring, which changes the entire way she approaches this strange new world. . . .
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This fast-moving sequel to Child of a Hidden Sea puts free spirit Sophie Hansa back in the middle of tense intrigue in the alternate dimension of her birth. Sophie, born in the fantastical land of Stormwrack but sent away to live with a San Francisco family, has largely given up her life as a promising biologist in hopes of returning to her birth world to discover its secrets. Now the call has come from her long-lost father, Clydon Banning of Sylvanna, to meet his household and business associates. In return, he will drop his legal charges against her mother and allow their broken marriage to be dissolved. Sophie struggles to get accustomed to Stormwrack's seagoing culture, slavery, and magic. Worse yet, she fears her father may be a sociopath. But nothing can keep this intrepid woman from investigating secrets, and soon she has Cly interested in using forensic science to help move cases through Stormwrack's clogged courts. Her first case: finding out who deliberately infested Cly's lands with invasive Throttlevine plants. Dellamonica expands on promising worldbuilding and delivers a fantasy tale of messy family politics and social justice with plenty of action and suspense.