To save her sister’s life, Faris must smuggle magic into a plague-ridden neighboring kingdom in this exciting and dangerous start to a brand-new fantasy duology.
Faris grew up fighting to survive in the slums of Brindaigel while caring for her sister, Cadence. But when Cadence is caught trying to flee the kingdom and is sold into slavery, Faris reluctantly agrees to a lucrative scheme to buy her back, inadvertently binding herself to the power-hungry Princess Bryn, who wants to steal her father’s throne.
Now Faris must smuggle stolen magic into neighboring Avinea to incite its prince to alliance—magic that addicts in the war-torn country can sense in her blood and can steal with a touch. She and Bryn turn to a handsome traveling magician, North, who offers protection from Avinea’s many dangers, but he cannot save Faris from Bryn’s cruelty as she leverages Cadence’s freedom to force Faris to do anything—or kill anyone—she asks. Yet Faris is as fierce as Bryn, and even as she finds herself falling for North, she develops schemes of her own.
With the fate of kingdoms at stake, Faris, Bryn, and North maneuver through a dangerous game of magical and political machinations, where lives can be destroyed—or saved—with only a touch.
Mary Taranta grew up playacting her favorite stories and writing some of her own in the woods behind her family’s farmhouse. Originally from Ohio, she moved to central Florida at the age of fifteen, where she still remains with her husband, two cats, and library cards in two counties. You can visit Mary online at MaryTaranta.com.
"Taranta’s debut opens the door to a magical new world filled with adventure, strong characters, and an intriguing plot. ...Readers can eagerly anticipate more of Faris’ story and adventures."
– Booklist, June 1, 2017
"In the first chapter alone, readers will experience a wide range of emotions, from heartbreaking agony to the sweetness of young love to the thrill of adventure — and back to agony once more. Both Faris and North are strong, complicated characters with good hearts. Other characters, including Alistair, are difficult to trust and yet impossible to write off completely. Taranta’s writing is nearly poetic and casts its own sort of magic. Readers should brace themselves for the last few chapters, and start stalking the internet for word on a sequel!"
– The Romantic Times, August 8, 2017
"Taranta takes all the best lessons from The Hunger Games and the Game of Thrones series and expertly uses them to create a dark, violent fantasy world. This first tale...reveres its strong female characters and does not shy from the gritty, gruesome realities of uneasy alliances. ...Readers will be swept up as the story unfolds. Against a sea of vastly similar offerings, Taranta’s story rises above the competition in exciting and unique ways."