Indian folklore drives the fate of a princess and her homeland.
Raised in Shalingar, Princess Amrita has known a father who serves as a kind protector of his people, as well as friendship and first love through Arjun, who was raised alongside her in the royal palace, but never her mother. Now betrothed to Sikander, the ruthless dictator of Macedon, Amrita loathes the prospect of becoming part of his harem. When Sikander “gifts” the teen an enslaved oracle named Thala, who warns her of Sikander’s scheme to overtake Shalingar, Amrita flees for her life, rescuing Thala in the process. Together, these two strong young women rely on their talents and each other as they search for a way to restore peace to the land, develop their true identities, and find the Library of All Things in order to access the stories of their lives and of loved ones. Along the way, ancient tales of magic, mythical entities, and everlasting love provide clues to the paths they must take. The rich, beautiful worldbuilding and thought-provoking questions on the power of experience, stories, and fate—and how they weave together—mitigate the occasional uneven pacing and jumps in Amrita’s first-person narration.
The complexity of the folklore and its romantic twists will engage fantasy readers on many levels. (Fantasy. 13-adult)