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“A near-future layering of East and West, of religion and technology . . . and of love and its loss—all woven into an intriguing tapestry.” —Diana Gabaldon, bestselling author of the Outlander series
Winner of the Homer Award for Best Science Fiction Novel
A renowned prima ballerina, Lucia del Mar is far more comfortable expressing herself through dance than with words. Shy and introverted, she spends most of her spare time on her laptop.
Still, Lucia’s job forces her out of her comfort zone, which is how she winds up at a White House reception where she meets Rashid al-Jazari, the wealthy CEO of a multinational corporation. Although attracted to him, Lucia can’t help but feel awkward and shrugs off their encounter as a one-time event. Not realizing he feels a similar attraction, she never imagines Rashid will seek out her performances; he is the last person she expects to see when her dance company travels to Italy.
Their reunion takes an even more unexpected turn when they’re both drugged and kidnapped. Although they overcome their abductors, it leaves them stranded in North Africa. For her own safety, Lucia agrees to marry Rashid, at least for the time being. As she recovers at his family compound in Morocco, reeling from their brush with danger, she struggles to fit into a culture she knows nothing about—and to deal with her growing feelings for Rashid. At the same time, at his secret office there, Rashid is developing a dramatic leap forward in artificial intelligence combined with virtual reality. He finds himself plunged into a fight for control of his work against powerful international forces, and caught in the middle, Lucia is swept into that battle . . .
“A terrific novel, ripping a path from today’s headlines to tomorrow’s realities.” —Robert J. Sawyer, Nebula Award–winning author