When Achmed admits he needs a master glass artisan to finish his stained glass tower, the dusty city of Yarim gives him Theopoldis. In exchange, the Yarim fountain is rebuilt by Firbolg stone workers and Grunthor burrows into the earth to clear the blockage preventing water from the fountain. The spymaster Raven is upset over the stealing of "her" water and plots revenge against the Firbolgs.

After three years of marriage, Rhapsody longs for Ashe's child. Since he's dragonblood, there's an inherent danger. They confront his aunt, the Seer of the Future, and she admits the child won't kill Rhapsody. Joyous conception soon follows but a rapacious enemy from "the world before" kidnaps Rhapsody. Using her Naming ability, she escapes her captor, but remains trapped in her hiding place. If Ashe and Achmed don't find her quickly, she'll find her life in danger once more.

Ms. Haydon has done it again! In a sweeping tale of lost love, lost civilizations, and lyrical language, heartwarming characters in impossible situations capture our interest until the last page. (Sep., 480 pp., $27.95)

Reviewed by: 
Kelly Rae Cooper