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An epic tale of love and revenge set in a world inspired by Inquisition-era Spain pits the magical Moria against a terrifying royal authority bent on their destruction.
'Epic and spellbinding' Dhonielle Clayton, New York Times bestselling author of The Belles series
Renata was only a child when she was kidnapped by the crown. As a memory thief, the rarest and most feared of the magical Moria, she was used to carry out the King's Wrath, a siege that resulted in the deaths of thousands of her own people.
Now Renata is one of the Whispers, a rebel spy working against the crown. When Dez, her commander - and the boy she's grown to love - is taken captive by the notorious Principe Dorado, Renata must return to the palace and complete his top-secret mission herself. Can she keep her cover, even as she burns for vengeance against the brutal, enigmatic prince? Her life and the fate of the Moria depend on it.
But returning to the palace stirs memories long locked away. As Renata grows more deeply embedded in the royal court, she uncovers a secret that could change the fate of the entire kingdom - and end the war that has cost her everything.
'A compelling world filled with beautiful, brutal magic and characters that feel real enough to touch' Sara Holland, New York Times-bestselling author of Everless
In this duology opener from C rdova (the Brooklyn Brujas series), King Fernando of Puerto Leones conquers neighboring Memoria and its magically gifted people by kidnapping seven-year-old Renata Convida, a Moria memory thief, and using her to extract tactical knowledge from prisoners. Two years later, Moria rebels dubbed the Whispers rescue Ren and train her as one of their own. Now 17, Ren knows many Whispers think her a traitor for the bloodshed she unwittingly facilitated as a child. Consequently, when she accidentally endangers her boyfriend and unit commander, Dez, during his mission to destroy a weapon that could eradicate the remaining Moria, she flees camp without telling anyone and resolves to save Dez herself even if doing so means returning to the palace where she was a prisoner. This Spanish Inquisition inspired fantasy beguiles with evocative prose, organic worldbuilding, and an ethnically diverse cast. C rdova does little to establish Dez and Ren's romance, diminishing the story's emotional heft, and the mechanics of the characters' assorted powers feel murky and convenient, but ample intrigue propels the tale to a gripping close. Ages 14 up.