Hidden in a valley north of her homeland, Charynite princess Quintana waits for the birth of her son. Only in her dreams does she sense Froi, her love and the father of the child she carries. Even there, she is not certain if he survived the attack she barely escaped. Another person haunts her dreams as well, one she can’t place at first. She fights the woman’s presence, certain she is an enemy.
Queen Isaboe of Lumatere wakes with Froi’s name on her lips, an occurrence she can’t explain to her husband satisfactorily. Frustrated and feeling betrayed, Finnikin leaves her and their unborn child behind to join the men who seek Froi and the truth behind rumors about why he hasn’t returned from his mission to enemy Charyn.
Following the death of the Charynite King, Quintana’s father, Lord Bestiano has seized control of the palace. He bribes filthy street lords to bring him the dead body of the princess, along with her living son, the first child born to Charyn in nearly twenty years. Froi, his father, and uncle journey to the last Provincaros to rally support for an army to protect Quintana and return her safely to the castle. The only problem is, no one seems to know where the princess has gone. With the city leaders squabbling over rights and power and Bestiano’s men scouring the countryside, Froi must find her before anyone else.
Queen Isaboe, whose entire family were slaughtered by Charyn warriors when she was only a child, refuses to offer refuge to the daughter of her enemy. Though Quintana’s child will break the curse which has made her people barren, her unborn son may not be enough to heal the hate between the nations of Lumatere and Charyn.
In the last book in the Lumatere Chronicles, Marchetta delivers a powerful tale of two nations still reeling from deep wounds of war, and the few brave souls who will dare to pay the price of forgiveness. Packed with high emotion and witty dialogue, this is a fantasy series which does not disappoint. Though it does contain some brief but explicit romance, Quintana of Charyn eloquently explores themes of forgiveness in the wake of horrible crimes.
Several brief scenes of sex or reference to sex.
Some characters worship a goddess. Many believe the land of Charyn was cursed.
References to miscarriages. Scenes of brief warfare and injuries from swords or arrows.