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The Sinking City

(39 reviews)

Christine Cohen

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Book details

Christine Cohen was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. She spent most of her formative years roaming evergreen forests with her sister and a stalwart yellow lab, feeding her love of adventure a steady diet of stick forts and slingshots. Now she lives with her husband and three kids in a delightfully rural college town. When she's not writing, she pursues other creative outlets like baking sweet things and eating more than her share. The Sinking City is her second novel. Her first, The Winter King, was a finalist in the 2020 Christy Awards for Young Adults.

IMPRINT: Canonball Books

AUDIENCE: Grades 4-9

AUTHOR: Christine Cohen


SIZE: 5.5x8.5"

HARDBACK ISBN-10: 1-954887-27-2

HARDBACK ISBN-13: 978-1-954887-27-5

BINDING: Hardback

PUB. DATE: December 14, 2021

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Venice is a carnival of opposites, and Liona Carvatti thinks she understands it all: canal and palace, magician and merchant, plague and pantomime. As a patrician’s daughter, Liona enjoys the sparkling life of a noble family—although she would prefer to be tending to her flowers than practicing violin or standing around in a ball gown. But what Liona fails to realize is that Venice is a city of stone in a world of water. And ruling the dark waters are the Seleni—ageless, cold, and calculating.

When she loses everything she relies on, Liona must set a new course that will shake the foundations of Venice itself.

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“Under different circumstances, I would have enjoyed seeing Venice in disguise. I have never had so much freedom; as a patrician’s daughter I was not often allowed out of my house, and never alone.

"Today, I am anonymous and nearly invisible as I wander for hours through the streets of the Castello district. I admire the gauzy shimmer of the spells that support the wooden pilings beneath our buildings and fortify our wooden bridges until they can be rebuilt with Istrian stone. Children point at the street magician’s stalls, begging for the smoke animals and spinning balls of light. These vendors are not members of the magicians’ guild; their spells are crude and rudimentary, but they can make easy money entertaining children and reading the fortunes of superstitious adults.

"My hand goes instinctively to the mark on my wrist, and I tug at my shirtsleeve to ensure that it’s hidden...."

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Canonball Books is the children's imprint of Canon Press. At Canonball, we believe stories are soul food, so you can expect excitement, danger, loyalty, virtue, and family in your Canonball books. Feed your kids the right books!

What People Are Saying about Christine Cohen and The Winter King (finalist for the 2020 Christy Awards)

"Author Christine Cohen fills her debut novel with courage, suspense, unexpected twists, and deep Biblical truths." ~WORLD Magazine

"The Winter King is a beautiful book in every way, stirring and lovely, a tale of courage marinated in deep truth and laced with echoes of Till We Have Faces. This is exactly the kind of book I want to fill my family's shelves with." ~N.D. Wilson, bestselling author of the 100 Cupboards series, the Ashtown Burials series, and Outlaws of Time

"...will leave you on the edge of your seat with mystery and intrigue..." ~Bookstr.com, "Top 5 Sci-Fi/Fantasy Picks to Escape Reality"

Customer Reviews

Based on 39 reviews
dwayne m.

The Sinking City

Patrick H.
Excellent Book

My daughter absolutely loved it.


My nine and eleven year old daughters we’re begging me to read each night.

Cirdan V.
A real page turner

I gave this book to my sister for her birthday and she could not put it down until she had finished it in one sitting! I highly recommend.

Susan C.
Fun read!

I needed a story I could escape to as I encountered an 10+ hour flight. Flying makes me nervous and this book was a welcome distraction. It not only captured and held my attention but I couldn't put it down even after landing. Great story!

Stevie S.
Great YA Novel

Very well written story. Really enjoyed the characters, especially Aloysius and his self sacrificial love. Can’t wait to read The Winter King next!

Anna M.
A fantastic book!

This is an absolutely amazing book! Definitely one of our top favorites, and we’ve given copies to friends as well!

Amanda C.
Read-Aloud families, note well:

Christine Cohen has written a book that “works” for a wide age range, despite the YA tag.

If you flip the box over to take a peek at the “nutrition facts,” so to speak, the average read-aloud family will see some ingredients they usually avoid. But I hope you try Sinking City anyway, and here is why:

Something I liked about Sinking City is that it invited rich imaginative participation from the listener, but somehow stopped short of totally commandeering the imagination.

I hope that’s not insulting to Christine because I consider it a tasteful and respectful book. The reader, like the young adults in the story, can choose how much to see. I’m willing to credit Christine Cohen with a skillful move here: A plot point is actually insinuated into the reader’s experience of the story.

What’s more, it really makes Sinking City a high-yield piece worth owning. When my kids return to it later, with more mature imaginations, more will unfold.

Returns are expected. My kids will likely read this one to themselves later. They all loved it, each for their own reasons.

Four stars because I want Christine to keep trying to outdo her last.

Randi G.
Engaging, Couldn’t Put It Down

I recently listened to the audiobook on Canon + and I was hooked. 10+ hrs of audio and I finished in less than 24hrs 😳😁 I promise I didn’t neglect my family or duties…too much. I’m a thirty-something mom and this story captivated and engrossed me. I haven’t picked up a “modern” book in a few years and even the “modern” ones I usually pick up are based on some classic. The Sinking City has the makings of classic fantasy. It is clean and family friendly but NOT cheap or cheesy. Definitely suspenseful and full of action. Beautiful themes of redemption, forgiveness, struggling to find purpose, and love. Magicians, patricians, peasants, and monsters. While the main character is female, this could easily be a book for young male readers as well. I look forward to purchasing a hard copy and reading it again soon, and saving it for when my own children are older. Recommend ages 10+ for suspense and actuon sequences

Love it!

Love this book! Another fantastic tale! Highly recommend this book.

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