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Time Agents Ross Murdock and Gordon Ashe, aided by a Polynesian girl and her team of telepathic dolphins, probe the mystery of the sea-planet men have named Hawaika. Its cities and civilizations have vanished, but our agents are snatched back through a Time Gate and marooned in the midst of the struggle for power that must have destroyed the planet. “The sweep of imagination and brilliance of detail in the author’s previous space-time novels, render Andre Norton a primary talent among writers of science fiction” – Virginia Kirkus. This adventure in the watery, grotesque world of Hawaika is further evidence of the author’s mastery.
59,750 words, with a reading time of ~ 3.6 hours (~ 239 pages), and first published in 1963. This DRM-Free edition published by epubBooks, 2010.
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There was a shading of rose in the pearl arch of sky, deepening at the horizon meeting of sea and air in a rainbow tint of cloud. The lazy swells of the ocean held the same soft color, darkened with crimson veins where spirals of weed drifted. A rose world bathed in soft sunlight, knowing only gentle winds, peace, and—sloth.
Ross Murdock leaned forward over the edge of the rock ledge to peer down at a beach of fine sand, pale pink sand with here and there a glitter of a crystalline “shell”—or were those delicate, fluted ovals shells? Even the waves came in languidly. And the breeze which ruffled his hair, smoothed about his sun–browned, half–bare body, caressed it, did not buffet on its way inland to stir the growths which the Terran settlers called “trees” but which possessed long lacy fronds instead of true branches.
Hawaika—named for the old Polynesian paradise—a world seemingly without flaw except the subtle one of being too perfect, too welcoming, too wooing. Its long, uneventful, unchanging days enticed forgetfulness, offered a life without effort. Except for the mystery…