For hundreds of years, Contermerria has suffered under oppressive ice and snow. A spell cast by the Vintar Court renders the mainland frozen and dangerous, strife with monsters. In the remote foothills of the north, the village of Dran is attacked by lethal predators.
While her townsfolk hide within the caverns, safe from the rimy beasts lurking around their homes, Maren is trapped outside with a thief from the jail. All her life, she’s been taken for granted as the village’s underappreciated healer. For so long, she’s wished for nothing more than to leave, but with her sister infected by a horrid, mystical disease, travel is impossible.
Now locked out of the caverns for months, she is faced with the idea of freedom and considers her companion’s proposition. Kane may be a criminal, but his offer of an alliance is her ticket out of Dran: help him find an item he’s lost while he takes her to a rare plant—the only known remedy for her sister’s ailment.
Leaving her home is no easy feat. From the moment she strikes out, she must find her way through danger, lies, and riddles. She was sheltered in her village, but out in the open, she struggles with too many questions about the fae and encounters rivalry among the royals. Kane doesn’t abandon her, standing with her as they face perils and vindictive royals. But can she trust this man?
Can she believe him when he suggests the impossible—that she, a common healer from the mountains, might not only be fae herself, but the one who can save all of the mainland?
After an attempt to save the king, Maren is captured by Contermerria’s first queen, a ruler with a grudge who keeps her in the dungeons. Queen Devota is merciless, torturing the slaves bound to the Riverfall Chamber. Months have passed, and as she is healed only to suffer more, Maren loses hope—not only for herself but also in knowing if Kane lives past the falls.
Against all odds, a wizened fae breaks Maren free with a clear order—help the Rengae princess break out another prisoner. Despite her best efforts, Maren is carried from the castle before rescuing anyone. Dumped into the swamp, she finds that summer has indeed replaced winter. Somman reigns as Devota’s sadistic rule incites war and suffering in all three realms. Yet, the queen cannot allow Maren to escape that easily, and she plans to capture her sister, Thea, next.
Meeting up with the demanding royals again, Maren learns that Kane is alive. He’s hurrying north to protect her sister on her behalf. Weak from the longuex disease, Thea won’t last long. Worse, as Maren rushes to reunite with Kane and seek safety, she learns that the hex is deadlier, not eradicated with the king’s death.
Among monsters and liars, Maren must determine the next step in this war: Help Kane search for the Ranger sword—again—or see to her sister’s safety first. When someone interferes with her plans, Maren must try to overcome the new threat of invaders breaching the shores. And this foreign fae seems unbeatable.
This time she’ll fight with Kane at her side…despite their differences and clashing tempers. No matter how much she hides her lie from him and how she can’t determine which war is the right one to join.
The reign of Contermerria’s fae power shifts again, replacing the scorching heat of the Somman summer with the relentless rain of the Rengaens. With Sadera’s blade controlling the change of power, the Wetherones can breach the shores and invade.
For centuries, any mention of the fantastical Wetherones was a cause for arrest or persecution. With time, they became a fable, a fearsome legend, and a claim only the crazed folks believed. Yet, they’ve arrived with plans to rule without mercy. With floods devastating the mainland, the beaches are clear for these frightening shadow fae to take over.
Caught in the middle of the royals who argue about how to eliminate this threat, Maren considers how she can fight back. She can't run, and soon, as the shadows spread, no one will be able to hide. Once again tasked with a search, one last hunt for the items that may offer an answer for the Wetherones' dark spell, she counts on Kane to help her find the way. His possessive need to keep her safe has her conflicted and unsure. Should she listen to her heart and obey the fae blood commanding her to fight like the warrior she was born to be, or heed his advice and be cautious?
Time is running out. As the darkness cloaks her world, it seems that peace is an impossible dream. Facing an unbeatable enemy and seeking lost, cryptic clues, Maren must dig deep and concentrate on fighting the right war before it's too late to save them all.