A thrilling new fantasy series full of magic and betrayal—from Evelyn Skye, New York Times bestselling author of the Crown’s Game series.
Sora can move as silently as a ghost and hurl throwing stars with lethal accuracy. Her gemina, Daemon, can win any physical fight blindfolded and with an arm tied around his back. They are apprentice warriors of the Society of Taigas—marked by the gods to be trained in magic and the fighting arts to protect the kingdom of Kichona.
As their graduation approaches, Sora and Daemon look forward to proving themselves worthy of belonging in the elite group—but in a kingdom free of violence since the Blood Rift Rebellion many years ago, it’s been difficult to make their mark.
So when Sora and Daemon encounter a strange camp of mysterious soldiers while on a standard scouting mission, they decide the only thing to do to help their kingdom is to infiltrate the group. Taking this risk will change Sora’s life forever—and lead her on a mission of deception that may fool everyone she’s ever loved.
Love, spies, and adventure abound as Sora and Daemon unravel a complex web of magic and secrets that might tear them—and the entire kingdom—apart forever.
Skye (The Crown's Game) mixes original story elements with familiar components in this middling series opener about war coming to a peaceful kingdom. A decade ago in Kichona, Prince Gin rebelled against his older twin, Empress Aki, in a Blood Rift that ended with Gin's apparent death. Now, 18-year-old apprentice taiga warriors and mentally linked partners Sora and Daemon discover a group of soldiers in a remote part of the kingdom, led by Prince Gin himself. It falls to them and their friends, Fairy and Broomstick, to convince the taiga leaders that the threat is real and, barring that, to use their ninjalike skills, magic, and wits to defend Kichona. Time-honored tropes include unhelpful adults and individuals who aren't, after all, dead, and the prose is sometimes stale ("Everything was quiet. Too quiet"). But Skye's magic, conveyed via the taiga and Gin's soldiers, proves unusual and interesting, and the cliffhanger ending will leave readers who can overlook the volume's flaws eager for the series's next installment. Ages 13 up.