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In Sean McMullen's glittering, dynamic, and exotic world two thousand years in the future, librarians fight duels to settle disputes, there is no electricity, fueled engines are banned by every major religion in Australica, humanity has split into two species, and intelligent cetezoids rule the oceans.

In space, the enigmatic Mirrorsun has begun to spin. Immense solar sails are pushing vast amounts of energy into its ancient orbital band, energy that could tear it apart--or be directed down at Earth. Already the hypnotic Call has ceased, and all electrical machines have been reduced to molten metal. A religious prophet has risen and is attempting to bring together the entire continent of Australica under her rule.

Meanwhile, her diesel-powered sailwing shot down by religious fanatics, the American princess Samondel is forced to set aside her trade-seeking mission and disguise herself as a student. Her only friends are a disgraced monk who is a member of the secret police and a beautiful young librarian who is a dangerous and unstable psychopath. From these unlikely friendships she must form an alliance between two continents and two species, and prevent ultimate war.

Fundamentally, unexpectedly, things are changing everywhere. As catastrophe looms and civilization begins to crumble, the Dragon Librarians of Australica have just one means left to hold their world together: to kidnap every numerate person on the continent and rebuild their out-of-date human-powered computer--the Calculor.

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