Phèdre is back, and the d’Angeline court can’t get enough of her. But the most satisfying patrons in the City of Elua can’t heal the bruises left by Joscelin’s cold shoulder or help her sleep at night. As the pieces start to fall into place, it becomes clear to her that she won’t find her answers in Terre d’Ange – but what will be cost of persuading Joscelin to accompany her to La Serenissima?

Picking up where Kushiel’s Dart left off, we rejoin Phèdre nó Delaunay at Montrève, breaking the news to her household that she will be returning to the service of Naamah. Cue romantic anguish from a certain former Cassiline and a shudder of delight from the Court. Without Delaunay to guide her, Phèdre must set her own course – without tipping her hand – if she is to find Melisande Shahrizai…

Book cover: Fireheart Tiger - Aliette de BodardThanh is the Empress’s youngest daughter: the expendable one sent to powerful Ephteria as a ‘guest’; the forgotten foreigner they left to burn when their palace caught fire. But Thanh survived to go home, although she has found less herself welcome than she could wish. Now, the arrival of Ephterian envoys is her chance to prove her worth to the Empire… or see her home burn to the ground. 

Once upon a time, I would have said a doorstop was my favourite kind of read: a big chonk I could lose myself in. These days, I have shorter commutes (ahem) and less patience; consequently, I’ve come to love shorter-form. Last year, a third of my reads – and half my favourite reads – were novellas. Today and tomorrow I’ll be wrapping up my thoughts on a few I haven’t yet reviewed.