In the midst of the sacred wastes of the Burning Land -- in a hidden sanctuary called Refuge -- life goes on as usual for the people who have always believed themselves the last of their kind. But Axane, in secret, dreams forbidden visions of a world shehas been taught no longer exists -- and awaits the arrival of a savior ... or destroyer.
Returned to power after long years of oppression, the rightful and pious rulers of the realm of Arsace have chosen Gyalo as their emissary, entrusting the young Shaper with finding a lost society of renegade mages and returning them to the fold. But his journey across the Burning Land promises dangers and temptations possibly too terrible to bear. And a shocking secret is waiting to be uncovered in Refuge, one that could reveal the true nature of the world ... and ignite a holy war without end.
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Victoria Strauss was born in Exeter, New Hampshire, and graduated from Vassar College with a B.A. in Comparative Religion. She wrote her first novel when she was seventeen, during a year off between high school and college. She lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, with her husband and three cats.From Publishers Weekly:
Two theocratic societies clash in this solid if predictable fantasy from Strauss (The Arm of the Stone). Overthrown decades ago by an egalitarian revolution that quickly evolved into a totalitarian state, the Brethren of the Way of Arata have regained power in the largest of the seven nations of Galea. The Brethren, incarnate Sons and Daughters of the First Messenger who revealed the Way of Arata 12 centuries earlier, are aided by those gifted with the powers of Dreaming (astral projection) and of Shaping (the ability to transform inanimate material). Vowed Aratist and Shaper Gyalo travels south to investigate a rumored community of "lost" Aratists existing in the harsh and holy Burning Land. If Gyalo survives his perilous journey, he will discover an enclave called Refuge. The people of Refuge, guided by the revelations of their first leader, believe they are the last remnants of humanity. Gyalo's mere existence either challenges their faith or fulfills it. Axane, a daughter of Refuge's elected leader who has hidden her ability to Dream, dreams of Gyalo and his expedition. She recognizes her world is not as she has been taught. With both sides believing the other is blasphemous and heretical, disaster looms. The novel's interesting exploration of a messiah-like character's struggle with his faith outweighs the more melodramatic role of Axane, who's a standard fantasy heroine, strong yet vulnerable, obedient yet rebellious. In the end the author lays a firm foundation for an eventual sequel.
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Book Description Eos, 2004. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110380817721
Book Description Eos. MASS MARKET PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0380817721 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.1928491