Released on 26 July 2012.

#1 in series
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Kushiel's Dart

4.04 based on 55480 ratings & 2888 reviews on

2002 Winner

Locus Award Best First Novel


Born with a scarlet mote in her left eye, Phèdre nó Delaunay is sold into indentured servitude as a child. When her bond is purchased by an enigmatic nobleman, she is trained in history, theology, politics, foreign languages, and the arts of pleasure. Above all, she learns the ability to observe, remember, and analyze. Exquisite courtesan, yet talented spy, she may seem an unlikely heroine...but when Phèdre stumbles upon a plot threatening her homeland, Terre d'Ange, she has no choice but to act.

Betrayed into captivity in the barbarous northland of Skaldia, and accompanied only by disdainful young warrior-priest, Phèdre makes a harrowing escape and an even more harrowing journey, to return to her people and deliver them a warning of the impending invasion. And that proves only the first step in a quest that will take her to the edge of despair and beyond.

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Making a marvellous debut, Carey spins a breathtaking epic starring an unflinching yet poignantly vulnerable heroine.
Brilliant and daring . . . In the character of Phèdre nó Delaunay 'a whore's unwanted get' sold into indentured servitude in the opulent Night Court, the author has created a particularly strong and memorable female lead . . . An engrossing plot focuses first on court intrigue and treachery, then, in a surprising shift, on high adventure, travel in barbarian lands including Alba (England) and war. . . This is an assured and magnificent book that will appeal to both male and female readers.
Publishers Weekly
This is definitely up on the list of my favourite books. The richness of the world and the sensuality of the characters and the writing draw you in . . . The whole world in this book is rich with tales, characters, and lore. Most of it is an adaption of our own world with a few fantastical twists.