Magic is power, and power is magic...
Once they were inseparable, just two little girls playing games in
a formidable castle. Now Princess Marie-Victoria, heir to the
mightiest empire in the world, and Aelwyn Myrddyn, a bastard mage,
face vastly different futures.
Quiet and gentle, Marie has never lived up to the ambitions of her
mother, Queen Eleanor the Second. With the help of her Merlin,
Eleanor has maintained a stranglehold on the world''s only source
of magic. While the enchanters faithfully serve the crown, the sun
will never set on the Franco-British Empire.
As the annual London Season begins, the great and noble families
across the globe flaunt their wealth and magic at parties, teas,
and, of course, the lavish Bal du Drap d''Or
Ball of the Gold Cloth.
But the talk of the season is Ronan Astor, a social-climbing
American with only her dazzling beauty to recommend her. Ronan is
determined to make a good match to save her family''s position. But
when she falls for a handsome rogue on the voyage over, her lofty
plans are imperiled by her desires.
Meanwhile, Isabelle of Orleans, daughter of the displaced French
royal family, finds herself cast aside by Leopold, heir to the
Prussian crown, in favor of a political marriage to Marie-Victoria.
Isabelle arrives in the city bent on reclaiming what is hers. But
Marie doesn''t even want Leopold-she has lost her heart to a boy
the future queen would never be allowed to marry.
When Marie comes to Aelwyn, desperate to escape a life without
love, the girls form a perilous plan that endangers not only the
entire kingdom but the fate of the monarchy.
"[De la Cruz''s] vivid descriptions are just enough to transport us
into the world...This character-driven novel has fabulous balls,
glitzy gowns, and plenty of drama and plot twists, making it hard
to put down."-School Library Journal