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by Renee Collins
Release date: August 31, 2013
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasy, young adult

True Grit meets The Prestige in a fantastical Wild West where, instead of panning for gold, miners pan for bones of magical creatures and can harness their mystical powers for good... or evil.

After a raging fire consumes her town and kills her parents, Maggie Davis is left on her own to protect her younger sister, Ella, and survive best she can in the Eastern Colorado town of Burning Mesa. In Maggie's world, the remains of long-extinct magical creatures such as dragons and sirens are mined and traded on the black market for their residual magical elements, and harnessing these relics' powers can allow the user to wield fire, turn invisible, or heal even the worst injuries.

Living and working in a local saloon, Maggie befriends the spirited showgirl Adelaide and falls for the roguish cowboy Landon. But when she proves to have a particular skill at harnessing relics' powers, Maggie is whisked away to the glamorous hacienda of Alvar Castilla, the wealthy young relic baron who runs Burning Mesa. Though his intentions aren't always clear, Alvar trains Maggie in the world of relic magic. But when the mysterious fires once again begin to consume their neighboring towns, Maggie must discover who is channeling relic magic for evil, before it's too late.

(updated 2013-08-31)

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