Now, from the imagination of two of fantasy fiction's hottest young talents, comes an astonishing epic that takes readers into the heart of the exotic Tsurani empire, where formal courts mask deadly intrigues. Murder and magic encircle the mysterious world of Kelewan, where a valiant girl leads her followers through terror and peril - and discovers her own womanhood. She is Mara, Ruling Lady of the Acoma, who in her heroic struggles for survival must contend with powerful rival houses, strike deals with sinister rebel warriors, and forge a treaty with the enigmatic Cho-ja - a race of alien insectoids. But in order to restore the house to pre-eminence Mara must trade her heart for power as she marries the son of an enemy - all the while plotting his death. Mara's bold and desperate gamble enables her to get past assassinations and betrayal until she must confront her most dangerous foe. In his own stronghold...

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