Bristal, a sixteen-year-old kitchen maid, finds herself in a gritty fairy tale gone wrong when she discovers she has magic in her blood. She's descended from an ancient line of immortal sorcerers called elicromancers—a race that has all but died out in her world, but only two remain in Nissera after a bloody civil war. Bristal joins their ranks without knowing that one of them has a dark secret . . .
Tamarice is plotting a quest to overthrow the realm's nobility and take charge herself. Together, Bristal and Brack must guard the three kingdoms of Nissera against Tamarice's black elicromancy. There are princesses to protect, royal alliances to forge, and fierce monsters to battle—all with the hope of preserving peace.
With clever homages to Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, Hannah West makes a fast-paced, exciting, and wholly original debut. The Nissera Chronicles begin here and continue with Fields of Fire, a short story set against the events of Kingdom of Ash and Briars, and Realm of Ruins, a gripping companion novel.
"One of the best books I've ever read."—C.J. Redwine, New York Times best-selling author of The Shadow Queen
"A world both terrifying and wonderful."—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
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History might be whittled down until all that remains are shining fables of fairy magic and curse-defying kisses. War might go unmentioned in the polished children’s tales of the two girls with rose petal lips and hair of spun gold, the girls whom I was tasked with making queens.
The coming generations may forget that the price of the peace they will enjoy was paid in blood.
But for the historians, the truth-seekers and the curious: here is the light and the dark of it. Here is my story.