The CouncillorE. J. Beaton
fantasy > high fantasy
This Machiavellian fantasy follows a scholar's quest to choose the next ruler of her kingdom amidst lies, conspiracy, and assassination
When the death of Iron Queen Sarelin Brey fractures the realm of Elira, Lysande Prior, the palace scholar and the queen’s closest friend, is appointed Councillor. Publically, Lysande must choose the next monarch from amongst the city-rulers vying for the throne. Privately, she seeks to discover which ruler murdered the queen, suspecting the use of magic.
Resourceful, analytical, and quiet, Lysande appears to embody the motto she was raised with: everything in its place. Yet while she hides her drug addiction from her new associates, she cannot hide her growing interest in power. She becomes locked in a game of strategy with the city-rulers – especially the erudite prince Luca Fontaine, who seems to shift between ally and rival.
Further from home, an old enemy is stirring: the magic-wielding White Queen is on the move again, and her alliance with a traitor among the royal milieu poses a danger not just to the peace of the realm, but to the survival of everything that Lysande cares about.
In a world where the low-born keep their heads down, Lysande must learn to fight an enemy who wears many guises... even as she wages her own battle between ambition and restraint.
E. J. Beaton lives in Melbourne, Australia, and has a penchant for peregrination. She has lived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, researched in New York, given papers in Scotland, England and Denmark, and travelled widely in Europe and Asia.
When she’s not fuelling her travel addiction, she can often be found in a tucked-away bar, enjoying a Talisker. The Councilor is her debut novel.