Synopsis: Tarisai has always longed for the warmth of a family. She was raised in isolation by a mysterious, often absent mother known only as The Lady. The Lady sends her to the capital of the global empire of Aritsar to compete with other children to be chosen as one of the Crown Prince’s Council of 11. If she’s picked, she’ll be joined with the other Council members through the Ray, a bond deeper than blood.
That closeness is irresistible to Tarisai, who has always wanted to belong somewhere. But The Lady has other ideas, including a magical wish that Tarisai is compelled to obey: Kill the Crown Prince once she gains his trust. Tarisai won’t stand by and become someone’s pawn—but is she strong enough to choose a different path for herself?
Review: Firstly, thank you to Readers First for providing me with this book in exchange for an honest review. Our protagonist Tarisai is born of a mysterious woman who she seldom sees. Trained through her childhood she is groomed to be anointed by a ray bearing crown prince. The Same prince her mother has magically commanded her to kill. It took me two weeks to read this book which is a little slow for me, I didn’t always find it gripping but devoured the story when I was actually reading it! I adored how story driven the plot was, with lots of jumps in time from before Tarisai was born and as she grows in the palace with the boy she must kill.
My favourite character was easily The Lady, she was so complex morally grey and had me in tears at the end of the book. I thought that some of the supporting characters lacked development but the story itself more than made up for it! The best part of the story for me was the intricacy of the history and how it impacted the character’s lives years later. This is a beautiful story and I love the representation and vivid descriptions of the different cultures. Its hard to compare this book to others as its so wonderfully unique, but I think if you enjoyed The Red Queen and Memoirs of a Geisha you should give this a read!
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Source: Readers First
Good reads Rating: 4.51