Darksong Rising (The Spellsong Cycle, #3)
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Darksong Rising

by L. E. Modesitt, Jr.
Release date: 1999
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasyhigh fantasy

L. E. Modesitt has gathered a large devoted following with his bestselling Recluce novels, which have more than a million copies in print. With the Spellsong Cycle he has broadened that following, creating a compelling, innovative fantasy world where music is magic.

In The Soprano Sorceress, Anna Marshall wished she could be anywhere but Iowa, wished she could be anything but a singer and music teacher – and found herself pulled from Iowa to the world of Erde, a world where song is magic. And Anna's musical ability gave her the potential to be an enormously powerful sorceress. For the first time, Anna was in complete control of her own life – and she made the most of it. With her musical talent and training, her common sense, and her integrity, Anna became a magician and saved the kingdom of Defalk from invasion, and within six months she became its regent.

In The Spellsong War, Anna faced the harsh reality of rebuilding Defalk, ravaged by years of drought and war. But she was not given enough time: knowing Defalk's weakened state, its southern neighbors invaded. In the realpolitik atmosphere on Erde, Anna needed to demonstrate that she would not allow Defalk's greedy neighbors to seize the kingdom. And since the male rulers of most of Erde were still convinced that women were weak, her demonstration was doubly strong.

Now in Darksong Rising, Anna faces enemies both foreign and domestic: men who would destroy her and claim Defalk for their own. To the East, Bertmynn, Lord of Dolov, seeks to gain control of all of Ebra by crushing the revolt of the FreeWomen of Elahwa, in order to bring the fill might of all of Ebra against Defalk. To the West, Rabyn, the Prophet of Music and the ruler of Neserea, waits for the first opportunity to invade Defalk with a force of lancers that outnumbers Anna's ten to one. And at home, Anna must decide whether to support the ascension of a conniving lord – rightful heir to the throne by birth, but potentially devastating for his subjects – or face civil war. The solutions to all these problems are magical, but not easy, not even for the mighty Anna, who has learned that magic has a high cost, and ruling means winning over and over, day by day.

(updated 2016-08-25)

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