The writing is really, really good. The story? Not so much for me. It started slow, stayed slow and so much of what one assumes happened, happened internally and one had to make inferences from the external behaviours of the characters. The world-building was both interesting and incomplete, not unlike the love story. I wanted to like it, I tried to like it, but ultimately I was unhappy with it. I liked the characters well enough, don't get me wrong- though I didn't find the water horses even a little believable. The villains were far too villainous, the brooding love-object just a little too perfect, and overall it failed to work for me, try though I might.