The Edge of the Water (Edge of Nowhere Series #2) [NOOK Book]


A mysterious girl who won’t speak; a coal black seal named Nera that returns to the same place very year; a bitter feud of unknown origin—strange things are happening on Whidbey Island, and Becca King, is drawn into the maelstrom of ...
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The Edge of the Water (Edge of Nowhere Series #2)

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A mysterious girl who won’t speak; a coal black seal named Nera that returns to the same place very year; a bitter feud of unknown origin—strange things are happening on Whidbey Island, and Becca King, is drawn into the maelstrom of events.

But Becca, first met in The Edge of Nowhere, has her own secrets to hide. Still on the run from her criminal stepfather, Becca is living in a secret location. Even Derric, the Ugandan orphan with whom Becca shares a close, romantic relationship, can’t be allowed to know her whereabouts.

As secrets of past and present are revealed, Becca becomes aware of her growing paranormal powers, and events build to a shocking climax anticipated by no one.

Acclaimed author Elizabeth George brings her extraordinary talents to this intriguing story that blends mystery and myth.
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Editorial Reviews

VOYA, February 2014 (Vol. 36, No. 6) - Madeline Miles
This book is well written, on many levels. George stays in third-person throughout the whole book, yet the perspective changes each chapter, or part of the book. The way she writes is interesting because it is not exactly third-person omniscient, but it is not third-person singular either. It is a little bit of both because in each part, readers are not exactly hearing (reading) everyone’s thoughts, but they do hear almost everyone’s perspective at some point in the book. This book is thoroughly enjoyable and should be recommended to any teenager who enjoys mystery. Reviewer: Madeline Miles, Teen Reviewer; Ages 12 to 18.
VOYA, February 2014 (Vol. 36, No. 6) - Debbie Wenk
So many questions and secrets swirl around Whidbey Island. Many of them center on Nera—the mysterious black seal whose appearance every year at the same time has spawned a festival and a website by seal-spotters who report every sighting of her while in the waters around their island. When Annie—a marine-biologist grad student—arrives intent on studying Nera for her doctoral dissertation, a lot more questions are raised and some secrets revealed. This is the second installment in what appears to be a series but one need not have read the first book to be engrossed. It continues Becca’s story of being on the run from her murderous stepfather and raises new questions about her origins. As the quest for answers about Nera intensifies, several characters face questions of their own: Jenn is confused about who she is attracted to; Derric struggles with the secret of the sister he left behind in a Ugandan orphanage and what it means about the kind of person he is; Becca has glimpses of what could be memories but no answers. With so much going on in this story, character development is a little thin. Some of the adult characters are a tad too understanding to be realistic, while the teens come off a little better, though Jenn’s turnaround in regards to Becca is rather abrupt and not really well developed. These flaws do not detract from a riveting story and since many questions remain unanswered, readers will be eager for the next installment. Reviewer: Debbie Wenk; Ages 12 to 18.
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—Whidbey Island is beautiful and isolated, but if Becca King thought she would be safe from her murderous stepfather there, she learned just how wrong she was in the closing pages of The Edge of Nowhere (Viking, 2012). She is forced to rely on the kindness of her friend Seth Darrow, who gives her a secret place to stay, and her hidden life causes problems between her and her boyfriend, Derric. Meanwhile, Becca finds her ability to hear the "whispers" of other people's thoughts growing stronger, even as strange events start to coalesce around Becca, her new friends, and the yearly reappearance of a black seal in the waters off Whidbey Island. George convincingly expands the world around Becca through passages in the perspective of a classmate, Jen, whose point of view helps drive the plot forward, and the machinations of various townspeople as they alternately try to protect and harm the mysterious seal. Honest depictions of teenage sexuality are a refreshing addition to the story. So, too, are Becca's growing supernatural abilities, which have started to include visions, and the otherworldly qualities of Nera the seal, which add a dose of the mystic. Various plot elements make this installment best enjoyed by teens familiar with the first book. A ripping good thriller.—Elisabeth Gattullo Marrocolla, Darien Library, CT
Kirkus Reviews
Best-selling mystery writer George continues her series for teens set on Whidbey Island in Washington state with this mystery about an unusual seal connected to the Celtic selkie myth. The first volume in the series, The Edge of Nowhere (2012), focused on Becca, a girl with the power to understand some of the thoughts of others around her. This story also includes Becca and her on-again, off-again boyfriend, Derric, but the main character this time is Jenn, a bitter 15-year-old from an impoverished, dysfunctional family. Jenn is just beginning to question her sexual orientation, but many are already convinced she is a lesbian, and she is the target of relentless homophobic bullying (that evidently goes without consequence). Jenn befriends a marine biologist named Annie who rents a trailer near Jenn's home and employs Jenn as an assistant. Annie is bisexual, and she tries repeatedly and inappropriately but unsuccessfully to interest Jenn in exploring sex with her. Troublingly, the text does not seem to question the stereotypes it exploits, from the predatory gay adult to Jenn's slight frame and short haircut; Jenn's sexual questioning is not resolved. The actual mystery revolves around Jenn's and Becca's involvement with Annie and other adults in a long, complicated search for an unusual coal-black seal that returns to the island every year. Too long, too many characters, too many subplots and far too many trendy ingredients stirred in just for effect. (Paranormal mystery. 12 & up)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101602485
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 3/11/2014
  • Series: Edge of Nowhere Series , #2
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 20,915
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Elizabeth George
Elizabeth George is the author of the bestselling crime novels about Inspector Thomas Lynley, as well as The Edge of Nowhere, her first young adult novel, which was a finalist for both the Edgar and the Agatha awards.   Ms. George’s novels are notable for their incisive characterization and their complex, multi-layered plots.

Elizabeth George lives on Whidbey Island, where both The Edge of Nowhere and The Edge of the Water are set.  She says, “Whidbey Island asks to be ‘someone’ in a story. I only hope I’ve done it justice.” Two more coming-of-age novels in the Whidbey Island sequence will follow.

Visit her at


Elizabeth George was happy that her first novel was rejected.

Scratch that. She's happy now. At the time, it wasn't her best day. But the notes from her editor helped her realize that she had written the wrong book and chosen the wrong leading man. She threw out her Agatha-Christie/drawing-room-whodunit model in favor of a more modern police procedural set in the world of Scotland Yard. She promoted a minor character to her leading man, the handsome, aristocratic, Bentley-driving Thomas Lynley. And she invented a partner for him, the blue-collar, foul-mouthed, messy Barbara Havers.

"I was very lucky when the first one was rejected, because the editor explained to me why," George told the Los Angeles Times in 1999. "I had written a very Agatha Christie-esque book and she said that wasn't the way it was done. The modern crime novel doesn't have the detective call everyone into the library. It must deal with more topical crimes and the motives must be more psychological because the things you kill for are different now. Things like getting rid of a spouse who won't divorce you, or hiding an illegitimate child, or blackmail over a family scandal -- those are no longer realistic motivations."

And so, in A Great Deliverance, her first published novel, she opens with the decapitated body of a farmer, his blood-splattered daughter holding an ax, the horrified clergyman who happens on to the crime scene, and a rat feasting on the remains. Nope, not in Agatha Christie territory anymore.

George began writing as child when her mother gave her an old 1939 typewriter. When she graduated from high school, she graduated to an electric typewriter. But not until she graduated to a home computer (purchased by her husband in the 1983), did she actually try her hand at a novel. At the time, she was a schoolteacher and had been since 1974. But with the computer in front of her, she has said, it was put-up-or-shut-up time. She finished her first manuscript in 1983. But her first book wasn't published for five more years.

Though the Lynley/Havers novels are set in England -- as are the tales in her first book of short stories, 2002's I, Richard -- George is a Yank, born in Ohio and raised in Southern California. Maintaining a flat in London's South Kensington as a home base for research, George has been an Anglophile since a trip as a teenager to the United Kingdom, where she ultimately found that a British setting better served the fiction that she wanted to write. "The English tradition offers the great tapestry novel," she told Publishers Weekly in 1996, "where you have the emotional aspect of a detective's personal life, the circumstances of the crime and, most important, the atmosphere of the English countryside that functions as another character."

Readers have made her books standard features on the bestseller lists, and critics have noted the psychologically deft motives of her characters and her detailed, well-researched plotting. "A behemoth, staggering in depth and breadth, A Traitor to Memory leaves you simultaneously satisfied and longing for more. It's simply a supreme pleasure to spend time engrossed in this intense, well-written novel," the Miami Herald said in 2001. The Washington Post called 1990's Well-Schooled in Murder " a bewitching book, exasperatingly clever, and with a complex plot that must be peeled layer by layer like an onion." The Los Angeles Times once called her "the California author who does Britain as well as P.D. James." And in 1996, Entertainment Weekly placed George's eighth novel, In the Presence of the Enemy in their fiction top ten list of the year, where she kept company with John Updike, Frank McCourt, Stephen King, and Jon Krakauer.

In her mind, each book begins with the killer, the victim and the motive. She travels to London and stays at her flat there to research locales. And she writes long profiles about what drives her characters psychologically. The kick for the reader isn't necessarily whodunit but why they dun it.

"I don't mind if they know who the killer is," she has said. "I'm happy to surprise them with the psychology behind the crime. I'm interested in the dark side of man. I'm interested in taboos, and murder is the greatest taboo. Characters are fascinating in their extremity not in their happiness."

Good To Know

The original model for Lynley was Nigel Havers, the nobleman and hurdle-jumper in the film Chariots of Fire whose butler placed champagne flutes on the hurdles to keep him from knocking them over. She named Barbara Havers as an homage to the actor.

On page 900 of the rough draft for Deception on His Mind, George changed her mind about the identity of the killer.

George's ex-husband is her business manager.

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    1. Hometown:
      Seattle, Washington
    1. Date of Birth:
      February 26, 1949
    2. Place of Birth:
      Warren, Ohio
    1. Education:
      A.A. Foothill Community College, 1969; B.A. University of California, Riverside, 1970; M.S. California State University
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

     In the other boat, Annie Taylor suddenly put her hand on Chad Pederson’s arm. She said, “Chad, look,” and they all followed her gaze. The seal had actually come between the two boats, putting herself so close that any one of them could have touched her.
     Becca was astonished by the seal’s strange beauty, every part of her black. Her sleek skin, her eyes, her nose, her whiskers…The only thing about her that wasn’t black was her teeth, and these became visible when she barked a greeting.
     That prompted Ivar, who said, “Back away. Your boat’ll crush her,” to Chad.
     At the same moment, Annie said, “Wait a minute! She’s got a transmitter on!”
To Becca it looked like an old garage door opener fastened to the black seal’s skin. She squinted at it and heard Annie saying, “It looks glued to her neck. Glued, Chad, glued!”
     Nera finally dove beneath the water, disappearing from view. She resurfaced some two hundred yards away. She was heading at that point back out into the passage.
     Annie Taylor looked from the seal to Ivar. She said, “You know something about that transmitter, don’t you? You know why she has it on. And you know why she hasn’t lost it, don’t you?”
     Ivar’s reply was “I don’t know nothing.”
     But Becca could tell that he was lying.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2014

    Enjoyable read

    The second book in the Whidbey Island series has a lot going on. I enjoyed the book, maybe not as much as the first book, but there was enough of a mystery to keep me reading. I liked how some things became clearer without losing the sense of mystery. The last few chapters get really interesting.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2014

    Great plotting & interesting characters

    While I enjoyed the first book slightly more, the plotting & character development of some of the secondary characters in the first book was expert.

    The reader has a more complete sense of the people and neighbors of Langley.

    The mystery had enough foreshadowing that savy readers may guess, however the plot twists add an interesting element.

    I recommend.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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