Er’Rets is a land of contrasts. Lavish wealth exists alongside abject poverty. Half the realm lives in the sunlight, and the other half lies under a mystical darkness that breeds evil and insanity. Its king is dead, and a temporary council rules until the heir comes of age.
Achan is the lowest of the low, a Stray without family, station, or skills, regarded as barely human, cleaning up after animals and hauling garbage under the stern gaze of an abusive guardian.
Meanwhile, Vrell, daughter of a noble house, is in hiding, disguised as a Stray boy to avoid a forced marriage to the cruel Prince Gidon. Though she’s treated well, she lives in constant fear that someone will see through her disguise and betray her.
The fortunes of these two young people are about to change forever, and it’s not at all clear that it will be a change for the better. Each of them has a special gift that sets them apart from the ordinary, and powerful people want to use it to control the future of Er’Rets.
There’s a larger force at work in Er’Rets, though–an ancient, invisible power seeking to heal the divided land and dispel the darkness, and Achan and Vrell are part of that plan, though they don’t yet understand it.
By Darkness Hid is Jill Williamson’s debut novel, the beginning of an epic fantasy tale of courage and adventure that drew me in immediately, kept me turning pages, and left me eager for the next volume.
More about the story tomorrow. In the meantime, please visit the other sites on this month’s CSFF Blog Tour:
CSFF Blog Tour
D. G. D. Davidson
Rebecca LuElla Miller
New Authors Fellowship
John W. Otte
Rachel Starr Thomson