Dev is a desperate man. After narrowly surviving a smuggling job gone wrong, he’s now a prisoner of the Alathian Council, held hostage to ensure his friend Kiran - former apprentice to one of the most ruthless mages alive - does their bidding.
But Kiran isn’t Dev’s only concern. Back in his home city of Ninavel, the child he once swore to protect faces a terrible fate if he can’t reach her in time, and the days are fast slipping away. So when the Council offers Dev freedom in exchange for his and Kiran’s assistance in a clandestine mission to Ninavel, he can’t refuse, no matter how much he distrusts their motives.
Once in Ninavel the mission proves more treacherous than even Dev could have imagined. Betrayed by allies, forced to aid their enemies, he and Kiran must confront the darkest truths of their pasts if they hope to save those they love and survive their return to the Tainted City.
Courtney Schafer was born in Georgia, raised in Virginia, and spent her childhood dreaming of adventures in the jagged mountains and sweeping deserts of her favorite fantasy novels. She escaped the east coast by attending Caltech for college, where in addition to obtaining a B.S. in electrical engineering, she learned how to rock climb, backpack, ski, scuba dive, and stack her massive book collection so it wouldn't crush anyone in an earthquake. She then moved to the climber's paradise of Boulder, Colorado, and somehow managed to get a masters in EE from C.U. Boulder in between racking up ski days and peak climbs.
After completing her masters, she got a job with a local aerospace company, married an ... (more)