Bantam, Jul 2008, $7.50
Alec and Seregil have returned to their home base of Rhiminee, a Skalan city. Both look forward to some R&R as depraved drunken aristocrats. However, both know they are on call by their Queen Phoria who uses the duo as operatives so they can only get intoxicated so much.
Phoria informs her agents she has a job that is of the utmost immediate necessity. She wants them to return to Aurenen, Seregil’s hometown that they just returned from, to bring home her Highness’’ half-sister. Instead they are abducted and sold separately into slavery. Their hopes of rescue and freedom dim by the moment especially Alec, whose master experiments with his half-human/half-Aurenfaie slave.
The return to the Flewelling universe (see HIDDEN WARRIOR and THE BONE DOLL'S TWIN) is a winner as the two heroes struggle to survive in the alchemists’ world in which ethics are similar to that of royal espionage as anyone else is expendable because the pseudo scientists rationalize it for knowledge. Fans will appreciate their joint and separate escapades as Seregil and Alec, especially the latter are in deep trouble in this terrific fantasy thriller that can stand alone, but is enhanced by the other tales in the Skalan saga.