A little bit about Michelle
Michelle writes as both Michelle Sagara and Michelle West; she is also published as Michelle Sagara West (although the Sundered books were originally published under the name Michelle Sagara).
She lives in Toronto with her long-suffering husband and her two children, and to her regret has no dogs.
Reading is one of her life-long passions, and she is sometimes paid for her opinions about what she’s read by the venerable Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. No matter how many bookshelves she buys, there is Never Enough Shelf space. Ever.
The weeks since Jewel Markess ATerafin has been acclaimed ruler of her House have not been peaceful; four assassination attempts have been made on her life, and one of the most important members of her House Council has been forced to retire, leaving a seat empty at a time when she requires trusted allies.
The war in the distant South has ended; the armies, victorious, have returned to Averalaan. During the victory parade of the Kings' armies, the fifth assassination attempt occurs--in full view of the Ten, the Kings, and thousands of spectators. To survive, Jewel takes to the sky on the back of a winged cat; she returns to the Terafin Manse, leaving demonic destruction in her wake, the demon itself in pursuit. In the forest behind her manse, she has the power—barely—to stand against the demon; she does not have the power to destroy it.
In the aftermath of the Terafin's funeral, the Kings have demanded an audience with the newest ruler of House Terafin. A single, careless command given to the elemental earth on the day of the funeral has caused unexplained and disturbing changes to the palace itself. But before Jewel can answer the summons, she falls prey to the strange, sleeping plague that has felled citizens across the city of Averalaan—from the poorest of holdings to the wealthiest of mansions across the Isle.
It is there—in the uneasy land of dreams—that Jewel discovers the reason for the sickness, and there that she begins to understand the forces arrayed against both her House and the Empire; if she can survive the traps set by the Warden of Dreams and by her deadly, former allies, she will wake to a changed world—if she wakes at all.
Skirmish takes readers into brand-new territory, beginning right after the conclusion of The Sun Sword. The Terafin has been assassinated by a demon, and the battle for the House Seat will now begin. Four candidates have declared themselves, but Jewel, the Terafin’s own choice to become the next Terafin, has yet to announce her intentions. By the time she does announce her candidacy, attempts have been made on her life by demons. She has also walked along and shut a magical road against some of the demons, while at the same time, she’s acquired a number of nonhuman allies. But whether Jewel and her allies?both mortal and magical?will all survive the war that is now beginning is very much in question?.
The brilliant new novel in The House War series.
The House War series centers on the most popular character in The Sun Sword series: a young woman named Jewel, who survives both the everyday perils of being an orphan in the slums of the city of Averalaan, and the demonic dangers of the Undercity, and who rises to become a key figure in House Terafin, the most important of the Ten Houses of the Essalieyan Empire. At the close of The Sun Sword series, the House War is about to begin. Now, at last, that story can be told.
Demonic activity has escalated in both the Undercity and the mortal surface level city as the worshipers and servants of the Lord of the Hells strive to complete the rituals that will return their god to the mortal realm. As Rath joins with mages and the Twin Kings' agents to wage a secret battle against this nearly unstoppable foe, he gives Jewel Markess and her den of orphans the opportunity to escape the chaos by providing them with a note of introduction to the head of House Terafin, where Jewel will discover her destiny.
The incredible story that fans of The Sun Sword series have been waiting to read-the battle for control of House Terafin-from a writer of "talent and depth."*
Orphaned and left to fend for herself in the slums of Averalaan, Jewel Markess-Jay to her friends-meets an unlikely savior in Rath, a man who prowls the ruins of the undercity. Nursing Jay back to health is an unusual act for a man who renounced his own family long ago, and the situation becomes stranger still when Jay begins to form a den of other rescued children in Rath's home. But worse perils lurk beneath the slums: the demons that once nearly destroyed the Essalieyan Empire are stirring again, and soon Rath and Jay will find themselves targets of these unstoppable beings.