Smuggler Kiara Antoria has been living as a drifter and an alien in a foreign country ever since the brutal conquest of her homeland, Beldane. The last thing she wants is to face her past, but abetted by a mysterious mage, a local politician is forcing her to journey back to Beldane on a trivial errand. Kiara will do anything she can to escape his control, but the errand is not as trivial as it seems. As she becomes entangled in the conspiracies of the magical city of Shinar, Kiara must confront her past in order to rediscover a destiny she thought she had lost forever… or die trying.
A.J. started writing this book when she was a PCV. She wanted to write an action adventure about a strong, independent woman who had a complicated history. She drew her characters and relationship dynamics from her own life experience. In some ways, she identifies deeply with her protagonist.
In a world where everyone has their role, Aara has never fit in. When she is assigned to apprentice in her mysterious father’s guild, she gains a longed-for opportunity to earn a place for herself… if she can just manage to follow the rules. As she struggles to learn the dangerous art of channeling, Aara is confronted with a choice. Will she do what it takes to fit in? Or will she take the risks necessary to learn who she truly is?
Vria lives in a world of chaos. She has no parents, and the people she lives with are not a family. They live a precarious life on the edge of an empire at war, hunted. When Vria is unexpectedly sold into slavery, she is pitched headlong into a bloody, ongoing battle. But there she discovers unlikely friends, skills she never suspected she had… and a secret about her origins that she must keep hidden at all costs.
A. J. Valdois
After serving in the Peace Corps in the Republic of Georgia, A. J. Valdois taught English composition for a university in China for twelve years and is currently living with her mom in Kansas and teaching online. She writes fantasy novels for adults and young adults. A.J. infuses her extensive experience of traveling around the world and living in other cultures into her work. In addition to writing fantasy novels, she enjoys spending time with her extended family.