The Mountain in the Sea
Author: Ray Nayler
*WINNER OF 2023 LOCUS AWARD FOR BEST FIRST NOVEL * FINALIST FOR THE NEBULA AWARD, and THE LOS ANGELES TIMES RAY BRADBURY PRIZE
“The Mountain in the Sea is a wildly original, gorgeously written, unputdownable gem of a novel. Ray Nayler is one of the most exciting new voices I’ve read in years.”
—Blake Crouch, author of Upgrade and Dark Matter
Humankind discovers intelligent life in an octopus species with its own language and culture, and sets off a high-stakes global competition to dominate the future.
The transnational tech corporation DIANIMA has sealed off the remote Con Dao Archipelago, where a species of octopus has been discovered that may have developed its own language and culture. The marine biologist Dr. Ha Nguyen, who has spent her life researching cephalopod intelligence, will do anything for the chance to study them. She travels to the islands to join DIANIMA’s team: a battle-scarred securityagent and the world’s first (and possibly last) android.
The octopuses hold the key to unprecedented breakthroughs in extrahuman intelligence. As Dr. Nguyen struggles to communicate with the newly discovered species, forces larger than DIANIMA close in to seize the octopuses for themselves.
But no one has yet asked the octopuses what they think. Or what they might do about it.
A near-future thriller, a meditation on the nature of consciousness, and an eco-logical call to arms, Ray Nayler’s dazzling literary debut The Mountain in the Sea is a mind-blowing dive into the treasure and wreckage of humankind’s legacy.