Fourteen-year old Lissa is snatched from her home and finds herself a slave on a trading ship traveling on a waterless ocean of nothing but gray dust. A feisty, curious and intelligent girl, her desire to explore the ship earns her the hatred of the cruel first officer, Farq.
Fascinated by the ocean of dust, Lissa becomes embroiled in its mysteries, sensing things that the crew cannot, while cryptic whispers in her head are leading her toward a destiny linked to the dust itself. Only one man aboard can help her make sense of her new talent, but can she trust him? All is not as it seems, and she must unravel the clues before it’s too late.
When a sinister plot casts her adrift on the barren ocean, her best friend is left in the hands of the treacherous crew. Everything hinges upon her courage, quick wits, and her ability to master her new talent.
Today, I’m going to share an excerpt from the book, Ocean of Dust.
This is a YA fantasy, and I hope you’ll enjoy reading the excerpt.
Excerpt from Ocean Of Dust
By Graeme Ing
Our heroine, Lissa, has been captured, along with her new friend, Pete. Here, two burly sailors are rowing them away from their hometown. This is her very first experience of the ocean of dust. I hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt.
They had rowed so far already. The shore seemed such a long way away, and she felt exposed out on the ocean. A disturbance to her right drew her attention. A gust of wind powered a small whirlwind that sucked up fine grey powder from the ocean surface. It rose several feet into the air and sprayed the powder in all directions. When the wind died, the dust fell back down to be absorbed into the waves.
Fascinated, she edged along the seat, careful not to rock the boat, and peered over the side. Unlike the lake at home, she couldn’t see anything below the matt grey surface. How deep was it? She dipped her finger in, expecting it to feel like a bowl of salt, but the grains were so tiny that her finger met no resistance.
“Don’t even think of trying to swim for it,” the big man said, glaring over his shoulder. “Even without them chains, yer wouldn’t survive.”
“No one can swim in dust,” the other man added.
She pinched her lip thoughtfully. In the warmer moon-cycles, she liked to swim in the lake. What would stop her swimming here? After all, it clearly supported boats and huge ships. She plunged her entire hand beneath the surface and moved it about. The dust felt bone dry but grew cooler as she reached deeper. Scooping out a handful, she compared it to the spices in her mother’s kitchen. None had been ground as fine as this grey powder. It flowed between her fingers like a liquid.
A gust blew a wave of dust across the boat and into her face. She coughed and licked her lips. It tasted bitter, like nothing she could put her finger on. She brushed her hands together and wiped them on her skirt. The dust particles fell off easily and the bottom of the boat was covered in the stuff.
Pete nudged her. “Look.”
The rear of the ship towered above them, three or four stories high. The whole ship rolled side-to-side in a wide but lazy motion and was so much larger than she had expected. Windows were open on every level, with a narrow balcony halfway up. She read the huge letters painted across the stern:
The Fair Maiden Of Yamin