Deep Wizardry (Young Wizards #2)

Deep Wizardry  - Diane Duane

Duane did it again. This was amazing. It didn't have quite the emotional impact as the first one, but even still I was constantly on the edge of my seat, metaphorically speaking. I couldn't figure out how she was going to pull this off, how this wasn't going to all end in disaster for our heroes because Duane set up this impossible premise and committed to it. 

Nita and Kit may just be kids (12 and 11 in the NME, 14 and 13 in the older editions) but they prove again to be capable of understanding complex issues and committing themselves to helping solve them. Here, their actions from the first book end up having some unexpected consequences for the Sea and the life that lives in it. The Lone Power has been changed, but its life isn't linear. It exists in all times, at all points, and it is currently bound under the sea below the surface of the earth, trying to escape. The lives of thousands of sea creatures are at risk, and when Nita and Kit agree to help, they end up in a situation beyond what they expected to deal with. The tension is palpable and keeps ramping up the closer they get enacting the Song that will bind the Lone Power again - if they can all play their parts.

On top of that, Nita has family issues at home as her secret identity as a wizard is threatened to be exposed. I love Nita's family. Dairine is the annoying little sister, and her parents don't understand what's going on with their eldest daughter, but they're willing to trust her. This is a family that loves and respects each other, and it shows in the way they interact with each other. Some of the changes with the NME timeline don't quite work with the original text (Nita's mom being worried that Nita and Kit are having sex, for instance). Nita's also still getting used to having a friend, and even though she and Kit trust each other and are close, she doesn't always know how to handle him.

The writing and world-building continue to shine in this series. Duane weaves a mythology for sea life and wizardry that's built upon actual marine biology and physiology, and she brings that world to life for the reader with stunningly written passages and breathtaking action. I look forward to the next adventure.