Zahira is a young woman of the conquered Rua people, their country occupied by another, very different culture - the Sedorne. Zahira is an orphan and has been raised to despise and distrust the occupying population, as well as to be a devout follower of the native religion. But everything changes for Zahira when her home and foster family are destroyed and she finds out some shocking truths about her heritage and real family.
Realizing that it is up to her to do something about the violence and upheaval that are tearing her country apart, she must learn to accept her Sedorne origins and try to bridge the gap between the warring cultures. But when her own people suspect her of treachery for her ideas - especially after she saves the life of a Sedorne nobleman and begins to fall in love - the epic task ahead of her seems insurmountable.