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The Waterborn: Keyes, J. Gregory

The Waterborn

Keyes, J. Gregory

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ISBN 10: 0345403932 / ISBN 13: 9780345403933
Published by Ballantine Books, Westminster, Maryland, U.S.A., 1996
Condition: Very Fine/As New Hardcover

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Waterborn

Publisher: Ballantine Books, Westminster, Maryland, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1996

Binding: A Hardbound Book

Book Condition: Very Fine/As New

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Fine/As New, Mylar Cover

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: First Edition First Printing.

Book Type: A Trade Book Not Price Clipped

About this title


When her favorite cousin disappears, Hezhi, an exotic princess whose blood bears the seeds of the River God's magic, embarks on a dangerous quest to find the truth, a search that leads her to Perkar, a chieftain's son who has sworn to destroy the dreaded River God. A first novel. Tour.

About the Author:

When J. Gregory Keyes was a small boy, his father's job took his family to live on an Arizona Navajo reservation; he quickly became bilingual.  At four years old he didn't find it difficult to learn another language, and Navajo became as much a part of him as English.  Keyes's early experience in the Navajo culture was the beginning of a lifelong fascination with linguistics, rituals, myths, and legends.  It wasn't only the Navajo reservation that had an impact on his imagination; equally important were the long evenings his extended family ( some of Choctaw ancestry ) spent spinning stories.  These early experiences produced in him an emotional connection to other worlds that indelibly marked Keyes's memory and his impressionable soul, a connection that now culminates in the thirty-two-year-old author's first fantasy novel, The Waterborn.

To Greg, writing has always been the window through which his imagination is released.  "The written word has been compelling to me since before I could read; my mother used to read to me, but it was when I realized that I myself could see stories in the ink of a book that I wanted to create such stories myself,"  Keyes said.

Years later, after Keyes had married Nell (a maker of jewelry whom he supported while she got her degree in metalworking), he began writing (not fiction, but a retelling of Southeastern Indian myths and legends produced in the hours after he returned from his mindless day job.  Soon he earned an M.A. in anthropology at the University of Georgia at Athens and began teaching.  His research expanded from the usual journals of eighteenth-century travelers and Franciscan monks, of killers and of scholars, to global folklore and mythology.  Much of the material he read was unusable for his class, but he stored it away until it blossomed into a rich landscape on which he has painted his fabulous stories.

The Waterborn evolved from a world history class Keyes took as an undergraduate.  The class discussion centered on civilizations, like Egypt and Mesopotamia, that arose from the organizational demands created by flood control and irrigation.  Keyes's imagination began to race, until he was obsessed by a vision of a city upon a river that was actually, rather than metaphorically, alive.  This city, as he dreamed it, had a dominating or even vaguely malevolent relationship with its "children."  He held this powerful glimpse in this head for over twelve years until it forced itself onto the page and became The Waterborn.

In many fantasies, there is a circular movement to the stories.  And Greg Keyes's life has imitated the genre in which he has chosen to write.  At nine years old he read his first real science fiction book, Moon of Mutiny by Lester del Rey, in the shade of a hogan on the Navajo Indian reservation.  From that first step he set out on what was to be his life's path.  It is with no small amount of awe that he welcomes the publication by Del Rey Books of the first book of his trilogy.  "The fabric of my world was woven from imagination.  In my work, opposites attract.  Between these two contradictory places a story sprang up and characters whom I could scarcely control were born to populate it."  And this is just the beginning...

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