A superb new book set in the world of the Black Jewels trilogy ... A gripping story of history and family secrets from an author at the top of her form, writing in one of the most popular worlds in fantasy fiction. Dena Nehele is a land decimated by its past. Once it was ruled by corrupt Queens who were wiped out when the land was cleansed of tainted Blood. Now, only one hundred Warlord Princes stand ... without a leader and without hope. theran Grayhaven is the last of his line, desperate to find the key that reveals a treasure great enough to restore Dena Nehele. But first he needs to find a Queen who remembers the Blood's code of honour and lives by the Old Ways. Languishing in the Shadow Realm, Lady Cassidy is a Queen without a court, a cast-off. She is not beautiful. She thinks she is not strong. But when she is chosen to rule Dena Nehele, she must find a way to convince bitter men to serve once again ... PRAISE FOR tHE BLACK JEWELS NOVELS 'a fascinating dark world' Locus 'genuine gems of fantasy' SF Site 'lavishly sensual' Library Journal
Bishop's capable seventh Black Jewels fantasy soap opera installment (after 2008's Tangled Webs) surges with spellcraft and engaging romance. The former queen of Bhak is now just plain Lady Cassidy from Dharo, since her entire court resigned to go serve prettier, better-connected Lady Kermilla. Warlord Prince Theran Grayhaven seeks a partner to help him restore his family's land after a violent uprising. With the help of the High Prince of Hell, he finds Cassidy, whose friends encourage her to accept his proposal and return to being a queen. All seems well until the pair run into compatibility problems, and Cassidy meets a mysterious gardener who calls to her heart. Bishop's epic has a complex history and will best be appreciated by readers familiar with earlier books.