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The Water Mirror (Dark Reflections Trilogy) Hardcover – 30 Aug 2005

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Hardcover, 30 Aug 2005
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.3 out of 5 stars 22 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Same as The Flowing Queen? 22 Dec. 2005
By microjoe - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I think this is the same book as "The Flowing Queen" but with different covert art and title. The author writes in German, so this is a translation. In an alternate reality, we have a story set in Venice during medieval times, with its many canals and bridges. The Egyptian Empire is using its incredible mummy warriors to invade the city, after having conquered most of the rest of the known world. The spirit of the water, the Flowing Queen, has kept the city safe so far. Two orphan teen girls are made to apprentices to a mysterious man who makes real magic mirrors. They soon discover a plot to capture the Flowing Queen by traitors in the city, leaving Venice vulnerable for the first time in 36 years. And why are city officials holding the flying lion as a prisoner, when he can help save them?

Venice and the world portrayed by the author is full of fantasy and horror, and plot twists at every turn. From stone lions that walk, scary mermaids that live in the canals as pull the gondola boats as slaves to the humans, terrifying mummies, a demonfrom hell, and magic mirrors, she has created a unique world for the reader to visit.

I found the book to be full of enjoyable characters, courage, and inspiration. Kids that are 10 years old and up should enjoy this book as well as adults. My only complaint was that it is too short, but it is the first book in a series.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fresh new fantasy... 8 Feb. 2006
By Madisen - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a fan of the fantasy genre, I was very happy to read this innovative book, which finally breaks free of the tired conventions authors have been following for years.

From the very start, the setting (a magical Venice, in the early 1900s) is a change from the standard Middle Earth ripooffs and medieval castles. Main character Merle is a well-rounded character who acts quite a bit more like an actual person than any heroine in recent memory. And the supporting cast is no slouch, either; in this well-crafted universe, even standard archetypes have been transformed into fresh new personalities.

As is required for any magical world, the fantasy Venice is sprinkled with all kinds of mythical objects and creatures, from stone lions and mummy warriors to "mirror phantoms" and mermaids. All of these are described in a way that makes them seem like they could really exist.

The constant stream of unique ideas only helps to drive an intriguing plot. Since this is the first in a series, the ending leaves plenty of loose ends for readers to ponder until the translation of book 2.

This book's pretty cover art drew me in, but its strong plot hooks and great writing will keep me coming back until the series concludes.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The magical first installment of a fantasy-filled trilogy 21 Oct. 2005
By Teen Reads - Published on
Format: Hardcover
When fourteen-year-old Merle is sent to be apprenticed to the mirror maker Arcimboldo, she's thrilled; she will finally escape the horrors of the orphanage. Besides, the mysterious master craftsman is rumored to be a magician of sorts --- how exciting to be that close to magic, even if it does mean relocating to the ominous Canal of the Expelled at the dead end of one of Venice's famous waterways.

Joining Merle as one of two new apprentices is Junipa, blind since birth. Merle is impressed by Junipa's heightened abilities to hear noises and sense feelings, and she's even more impressed when Arcimboldo cures Junipa on their first night in his home. The master replaces Junipa's own pupils with flat mirrors, enabling the girl to see even better than her friend.

Merle has a mirror secret of her own; set adrift on a Venetian canal as a baby, Merle was left one present by her absent parents. She is the possessor of a magical "water mirror," a hand mirror whose surface is water and whose watery depths are warm and inviting. The mysterious hand that grasps Merle's own inside the mirror and Merle's own dreams lead the girl to believe that she might have a secret connection to the Flowing Queen, the elusive power that has protected the city of Venice from the menacing Egyptians who have taken over much of the rest of the world. When the Flowing Queen is threatened, can Merle and her allies help save the city --- and even the whole world?

THE WATER MIRROR is full of richly imagined characters who seem familiar and yet strange. Marauding mummies threaten cities, soldiers patrol on stone lions, and mermaids seem more like sharks than sirens. In addition to these vivid fantasy images, Kai Meyer has created engaging and admirable heroines readers will be compelled to follow.

Fortunately, they will have a chance to do so, because THE WATER MIRROR is the first book in a trilogy. Like Cornelia Funke, Meyer, a bestselling author in his native Germany, will certainly find audiences in this country as well.

--- Reviewed by Norah Piehl
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Water Mirror by.Kai meyer 1 Sept. 2005
A Kid's Review - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Waiting for this book for over two months was not easy,but when I finally got it I was satisfied.

When Merle and her friend Junipa are found a job in the mirror shop of the famous Arcimboldo, by the the orphanage, they are excited as never before.When they arrive they right away are introduced to a mysterious woman named Eft, who covers the lower portion of her face with a mask.

Fourteen year old Merle posses a strange mirror whose surface is made of water.Merle can stick her whole hand in the mirror and not get wet.Then Junipa, who has been cured of blindness, sticks her face into the mirror and looks into the dark with her "mirror" eyes.When she emerges she tells Merle to never ask her what she saw.Amoung that are the rival weaver boys across the canal, and Merle befriends the leader, Serafin.Serafin is later captured by the rival egyptians and the flowing queen,protecter of Venice is taken from the waters but saved by Merle.Together the two must erect peace and save all of Venice.

This is a great book that can be enjoyed by many.I recomend ages twelve and up and say it is about on an eighth grade level. You will not be dissapointed.

~KEL 13, U.S
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I "Heart" Venice ... 2 Jan. 2007
By T. J. Jones - Published on
Format: Hardcover
It seems Venice has become a hot commodity in children's literature ever since Cornelia Funke's "Thief Lord" appeared. But Kai Meyer gives the ancient city a new, dark twist in "The Water Mirror". Filled with sharp-toothed mermaids and flying stone lions, the "Water Mirror" is a satisfying begginning in this new series.

Merle and Junipa are two orphan girls who live in an alternate Venice, one which is under seige by the powerful Egyptian Empire and its mummy armies. Magic is not unusual in this Venice, as mermaids swim through the canals and the city is patrolled by flying stone lions. But only the Flowing Queen, who is said to be the very water herself, can truly protect Venice from the Empire.

One day for reasons unknown to them, Merle and Junipa are whisked away from their orphanage and apprenticed to the mysterious magic mirror-maker, Arcimboldo. Here is where their adventure starts, and Merle learns that her water mirror, the one she's had since she was a child, is mysteriously linked to the Flowing Queen. Soon, Merle along with her new neighbor boy Serafin, learn of a plot in the Venetian Council to betray the Flowing Queen to the Pharaoh. If Merle has any hope of saving Venice, she knows she must first save the Flowing Queen.

"The Water Mirror" is an exciting fantasy, richly detailed and interesting. The characters are believable and the magic is enticing. Venice is the true star of this story. The city is alive with magic and detail, yet there is also an extremely atmospheric foreboding about its fate. Meyer manages to keep the reader interested long enough with mermaids, flying stone lions, and political intrigue until they reach the ending where the story truly picks up. The book ends in mid-adventure hinting at more to come, but Meyer skillfully leaves the reader wanting more by revealing a bigger plot at plan than what was originally shown before.

While stopping in mid-adventure, "The Water Mirror" is still an interesting and magical read. It's the most original story I've read in a while, and the sudden new plot details revealed in the end left me and I'm sure will also leave readers wanting more. Highly reccommended, "The Water Mirror" is not to be missed if you are looking for high fantasy with a dark twist.
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