"Lush, engrossing, and full of mystery and dark magic," The Mask of Mirrors is the unmissable start to the Rook & Rose trilogy, a dazzling fantasy adventure by Marie Brennan and Alyc Helms, writing together as M. A. Carrick. (BookPage)
FORTUNE FAVORS THE BOLD. MAGIC FAVORS THE LIARS.
Ren is a liar and a thief, a pattern-reader and a daughter of no clan. Raised in the slums of Nadežra, she fled that world to save her sister. Now, she has returned with one goal: to trick her way into a noble house, securing her fortune and her sister’s future.
But in the city of dreams, her masquerade is just one of many. Enigmatic crime lord Derossi Vargo, stony captain of the guard Grey Serrado, dashing heir Leato Traementis, and the legendary vigilante known as the Rook all have secrets that could unravel her own.
And as corrupt nightmare magic begins to weave its way through the city of dreams, the poisonous feuds of its aristocrats and the shadowy dangers of its impoverished underbelly become tangled—with Ren at their heart.
Praise for the Rook & Rose trilogy:
"Immersive…a feast to savor slowly." —BuzzFeed
"For those who like their revenge plots served with the intrigue of The Goblin Emperor, the colonial conflict of The City of Brass, the panache of Swordspoint, and the richly detailed settings of Guy Gavriel Kay."—Booklist (starred review)
"Utterly captivating." —Shannon Chakraborty, author of The City of Brass
"This novel will catch hold of your dreams and keep you from sleeping." —Mary Robinette Kowal, author of The Calculating Stars
"Wonderfully immersive—I was unable to put it down." —Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter
"Exactly the fantasy adventure novel you're craving." —Tasha Suri, author of The Jasmine Throne
Marie Brennan (Driftwood) and Alyc Helms (the Missy Masters series), writing as Carrick, join forces to launch the Rook and Rose series with this intricately detailed doorstopper. Renata Viraudax leaves her backwater hometown determined to con her way into a noble house in the City of Dreams but Ren's plans bring her face to face with a dangerous crime lord and pit her against a vigilante called the Rook, her childhood idol. Navigating the glittering society of the City of Dreams, Ren soon discovers she is not the only one pretending to be something she's not: her landlord, Derossi Vargo, controls the city's underworld, while Capt. Grey Serrado of the city Vigil is seen as a class traitor for serving the nobility. Meanwhile, old religious beliefs prove to be more than just superstition, and a new drug floods the city's streets offering hallucinations that turn all too real. The authors devote much of this volume to detailing the names, places, and belief systems of this sometimes tediously complex world, causing the pace to drag. But readers who persevere will be rewarded with a tightly laced plot dripping with political intrigue. Carrick has built a strong foundation for things to come.