Tor, Jan 2005, 24.95, 318 pp.
Kirion, the sorcerer to the ruling Duke Shastro, insures that his liege gets what he wants. When he “pimped” girls from the old city using his ability to make his victims believe they love and in turn are loved by the Duke, no one in power cared, but when Shastro turned to the young at court, trouble started brewing.
Meanwhile Kirion's sister Aisling comes home after a three year self imposed exile to elude her brother while learning under the tutelage of an Adept to use her talent. Besides dreams that insist she must return to Kars, she feels she must do what is right to rid her homeland of her brother and his unfit ruler. Before she and her companion, the telepathic steed Wind Dancer, arrives at her home, Kirion takes their kingdom to war against their neighbor. As a stark winter makes matters worse, Aisling and another brother manage to gain entry into the court. As Kirion abuses his power and position leaving the people in dire straits, Aisling realizes she needs an ally, but no one except perhaps the perverted Shastro is in a position to help.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner