(Fourth Talisman #2)
Published by: Acorn Publishing
Publication date: February 19th 2018
Genres: Adult, Fantasy
In the second volume of the Fourth Talisman series, Nazafareen’s path takes a twist, setting her on a journey into the heart of the maelstrom…
It’s been a thousand years since the Avas Vatras tried to burn the world to ashes. A thousand years since they were imprisoned in the brutal wasteland called the Kiln. But revenge is a dish best served cold—even, apparently, by the children of fire.
In Delphi, Nazafareen joins forces with the followers of Dionysius to rescue her friends from the Oracle’s dungeons and seek out the three talismans whose extraordinary powers stopped the Vatras before. With her own breaking magic growing stronger by the day, she must walk a razor’s edge to control her volatile temper. And if the Vatras find the talismans first, their last hope will die.
In the frozen wastes of the Valkirin range, Victor strikes an uneasy bargain with bitter enemies to keep his tenuous grip on the Maiden Keep. The other holdfasts are coming for him. But it’s an enemy within Val Moraine’s walls that may prove to be his downfall.
Nazafareen reached the top of the stairs and tried to see what was going on. The other Maenads quickly fanned out on either side, working their way around the edges of the throng, except for Rhea who was trying to plow her way through. Nazafareen rose onto her tiptoes but she was too short to get a good look.
“Out of the way,” Rhea growled at the middle-aged man ahead of her.
He gave her an incredulous stare.
“And go where?” he demanded.
The crowd was packed cheek to jowl, a dense mass of humanity that might as well have been a brick wall for all the progress they were making.
“Just move!” Rhea snapped. She turned sideways, using her shoulder like a wedge, and began forcing her way through tiny gaps, but they only made it a few paces before she stopped again and cursed under her breath.
“The temple soldiers are holding a tight line in the front,” she whispered. “We’ll never make it. We’d better backtrack.”
Nazafareen wanted to scream in frustration. The ranks had already closed tight behind them. Then the crowd gave a tremendous cheer, tinged with excitement.
“What is it?” Nazafareen asked, her mouth dry with fear. “Can you see them?”
She could smell the sea of unwashed bodies and heavy perfumes, and a hint of something else. Smoke.
Rhea used her staff to poke a woman hard in the back. When she turned with an outraged scowl, Rhea took the chance to peer over the crowd. Her face turned grey.
“They’ve put someone inside the bull,” she hissed. “Oh no…”
Kat Ross worked as a journalist at the United Nations for ten years before happily falling back into what she likes best: making stuff up. She’s the author of the dystopian thriller Some Fine Day, the Fourth Element fantasy trilogy (The Midnight Sea, Blood of the Prophet, Queen of Chaos), and a new gaslamp mystery series that opens with The Daemoniac and continues with The Thirteenth Gate. She loves myths, monsters and doomsday scenarios. For more information about Kat’s books, come visit her at katrossbooks.com.