Rae has been abducted, mutilated, and imprisoned on a snatchers’ ship, at the risk of being sold along with other stolen young people. Escape is seemingly impossible because of the Darkness, a curse that steals the minds of the captured if they attempt to run away. But, pulled into a botched escape plan, Rae is thrown overboard and rescued by a Fae sorceress who places life debts upon her. Nevertheless, she vows to rescue her companions and bring to justice the Circle of Mages, who protect the enslavers, and the nobles, who enrich themselves by perpetuating the enslavement of Menaiyan children. Reuniting with enigmatic thief Bren and his companions, Rae’s mind and heart are thrown into further disarray. Bren’s secrets and his thieves’ code of justice are juxtaposed against Rae’s values, and her heart breaks over their impossible romance. This latest volume in a series that improves with each entry satisfyingly and realistically portrays a fairy tale that goes beyond happily-ever-after, exploring the will and vigilance needed to achieve justice and equity. In this world, magic creates greater complexities around power rather than simply solving problems. Rae has a clubfoot and grew to self-appreciation and acceptance in the previous volume. Characters have black hair and brown skin; cultural references suggest similarities to South Asian cultures and Muslim-inspired practices.



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