Fantasy Novel: Lake, Bone eating giant fish, monks, petrification and harpies.


New Member
Jun 14, 2019
Hi there folks. I'm trying to track down a book that is apparently rather obscure, as I've had little to no luck tracking it down.

If I remember correctly it was a rather thick hardback, printed in English.
i believe the cover was a fairly dour looking scene of a lake and a boatman with tall cliffs, but that could be wrong.
It would have been the mid nineties, perhaps 94-96 when I read it. I wasn't very old at all, my grandfather and my uncle were reading it at the time, as we were on holiday and I believe it was simply left in the caravan we were renting by the owner (somewhat hazy as to location but somewhere coastal UK. perhaps near Bristol). It looked a little battered if I remember rightly, so I'm making a guess that it was published in the 70s or 80s.
The main problem is that it was a little too advanced for me at the time so I had some of the elements of it related to me, or given the fairly extensive index section of peoples, flora and fauna of the setting to try to draw from the descriptions.
I would assume an adults/older teens target audience given that it seemed a little bleak, but I may be mistaken.
I cannot remember specific characters, but I seem to remember it had a quite well fleshed out world and setting, as mentioned before it had a fairly detailed index possibly including fauna, flora, people, places and maps (this is the part that I myself remember seeing most of, because I wanted to draw the cool creatures.)

So here we go, what I remember:

Details regarding some great huge fish that lived in a lake, which seemed to be the central setting, and some sort of other wierd magic fish that petrified people (I'm seeming to remember these ones that turned people to stone were called blight fish?) Perhaps another species of fish that could sing, and potentially had something to do with being able to cure the petrification (I may be misremembering this part entirely)
I seem to recall also harpies of different species mentioned.
There were some sort of monks or priests who go out on boats into the lake to feed bones to the big fish thing (which may have been what was depicted on the cover) for some sort of boon or power, perhaps secrets. It was almost like the same reverence the sandworms are paid in Dune, if I remember. Some sort of almost godlike thing.

I have no idea as to the author. The title may have been something to do with the lake around which it seemed to be set.

Perhaps the greatest issue here is which details I misremember due to my overactive imagination and what new creatures I invented whilst scrawling in my scrapbook at age 6-8 (though I've done my best to sift my memory and only give you the parts I'm most certain were there in writing.)

Similar threads