“A claustrophobic suspense novel of immense propulsive power.”—Kim Stanley Robinson
A Canticle for Leibowitz meets The Hunt for Red October in We Shall Sing a Song into the Deep, a lyrical and page-turning coming-of-age exploration of duty, belief, and the post-apocalypse from breakout newcomer Andrew Kelly Stewart.
Remy is a Chorister, rescued from the surface world and raised to sing in a choir of young boys. Remy is part of a strange crew who control the Leviathan, an aging nuclear submarine, that bears a sacred mission: to trigger the Second Coming when the time is right.
But Remy has a secret too—she’s the submarine’s only girl. Gifted with the missile’s launch key by the Leviathan’s dying caplain, she swears to keep it safe. Safety, however, is not the priority of the new caplain, who has his own ideas about the mission. When a surface-dweller is captured during a raid, Remy’s faith becomes completely overturned. Now, her last judgement may transform the fate of everything.
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Stewart's dark debut takes readers deep into the ocean, where a religious brotherhood mans the last ballistic missile submarine in the world. On his deathbed, the Leviathan's "caplain" (a mix of ship captain and chaplain) Amita reveals that he knows that Remy, the ship's Cantor, is a girl hiding her gender from the rest of the crew. Amita bequeaths to Remy the missile key, trusting her judgment with the weapon over that of the rigid man who will take his place as caplain. It's a struggle for the crew to keep the aging Leviathan seaworthy and secure even minimal supplies, relying on fishing and occasional raids of "Topsider" ships. Remy's closest friend, Lazlo, returns from one such raid with disturbing stories of the world above that earn him banishment to the engine room, where all eventually die of radiation poisoning. A Topsider prisoner is brought on board at the same time, and, between the prisoner's revelations and those from Lazlo, Remy begins to doubt the brotherhood's precepts. Stewart skillfully melds the specters of nuclear apocalypse and religious fanaticism with a story of survival, and orchestrates a surprising twist that will reorder readers' understanding of this world. This bracing examination of humanity's weaknesses and strengths marks Stewart as a writer to watch. \n