In Amberweise's polite society, a proper young woman of pure Magician ancestry would never involve herself with something as unpleasant as solving a murder. She would faint at the sight of wheels, pulleys, hinges or other demonic machines. She would never deign to notice the wretched lives of the non-magical commons who serve her day and night, nor would she ever dare to question the traditions of her upbringing. And, most certainly, she would never even think of falling in love with a man whose combination of common heritage and magical abilities have made him a pariah. Good thing Romana of Amberweise isn't a proper young woman. Now, as she works to solve the mystery of her granduncle's brutal murder, Romana uncovers a fearsome plot to overthrow a ruler whose tolerance for technology just might release the commons from their centuries of bondage. Besieged by dangerous enemies, Romana must use her courage and cunning to rebel against the powerful Magicians who will do anything to protect their lives of prestige and privilege.