Tiresome sequel to Daughter of the Empire, pseudo-medieval-Japanese fantasy set in the same world as Feist's Riftwar saga (Magician; Silverthorn; A Darkness at Sethanon). The widowed Mara, Ruling Lady of the Acoma clan, continues to battle her family's foes, the Minwanabi clan, while protecting the interests of her son Ayaki and restoring the Acoma fortunes. Throughout convoluted political and economical maneuverings, she is assisted by Kevin of Zun, a ""barbarian"" Midkemian slave from she other side of the Rift who becomes her lover. Great changes shake the Empire: The Warlord (an obvious Shogun clone) is forced to ritual suicide; the Emperor seizes full autonomous power; Mara and Ayaki cheat death on a regular basis; Desio and Tasaio, subsequent Lords of the Minwanabi, are not so lucky. Mara sends Kevin back to his own world so he may be free, not telling him she is carrying his child. In the end, her political savvy preserves the Empire and eradicates the Minwanabi. She is given the supreme title, Servant of the Empire, as her reward. A very faded carbon-copy of Shogun, with fantasy trappings tossed on.