HarperCollins (Pymble, NSW), October 2001 (reprint)
On an island off the Florida coast, ELizabeth works to communicate with a killer whale. No one else has ever had an opportunity like this - no whale has ever voluntarily come in from the wild before. Then one day the whale speaks.
But can humans accept this urgent approach from another species? Or will the whale be dismissed as a political stunt?
Beyond the marina, nuclear and biological disaster loom. Inside it, Elizabeth's loyalties are stretched to breaking point as she clashes with management, fights to continue her work and fights to understand why the whale has made this sacrifice.
Inspired by a childhood dream, she explores the limits of language and rediscovers an ancient kinship between land and sea.
Through the twin narratives of whales and humans, Tess Williams charts a course towards the last frontier: inter-species communication. Poetic, passionate and provocative, Sea As Mirror offers a challenging view of a new kind of future.
In the not-too-distant future, and in a specially constructed marina off the US coast, Elizabeth works to communicate with a killer whale, an orcaTachotic. Because of the nature of the project, it is very 'political' and she treads a fine line between people thinking she is mad, closing down the project and doing the work necessary to prove it is possible. Elizabeth feels she is getting very close to success, but she is getting frustrated with being so close and unable to find the key to understanding what Tachotic is trying to tell her. Tachotic himself is unsure why he has sought humanshow he can possibly convey the life of the pods...
And Elizabeth's time and energy is sometimes fragmented by her on-off relationship with Joe, her inability to put him in one compartment and her work in another. As her work takes over more and more, Joe is impatient to move on.
As the human world falls victim to terrorist nuclear attacks and everything that was familiar comes under threat, ancient kinships between the land and the sea re-emerge to show a different future, a future full of hope.
Read an extract from Sea As Mirror.
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