Fifty Shades of Grey meets Game of Thrones, Kushiel's Dart is the first in a triptych of beautifully constructed historical fantasies that combine passion, danger, great battles, and deep eroticism.
The land of Terre d’Ange is a place of unsurpassing beauty and grace. It is said that the angels found the land and saw it was good… and the ensuing race that rose from the seed of angels and men live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt.
Phèdre nó Delaunay is a young woman who was born with a scarlet mote in her left eye and sold into indentured servitude as a child. Her bond is purchased by Anafiel Delaunay, a nobleman with a very special mission… and the first one to recognize who and what she is: one pricked by Kushiel’s Dart, chosen to forever experience pain and pleasure as one.
Phèdre is trained equally in the courtly arts and the talents of the bedchamber, but, above all, in the ability to observe, remember, and analyze. Almost as talented a spy as she is a courtesan, Phèdre stumbles upon a plot that threatens the very foundation of her homeland. Treachery sets her on her path; love and honor goad her further and will take her to the edge of despair… and beyond. Hateful friend, loving enemy, beloved assassin; they can all wear the same glittering mask in this world, and Phèdre will get but one chance to save all that she holds dear.
Set in a world of cunning poets, deadly courtiers, heroic traitors, and a truly Machiavellian villainess, this is a novel of grandeur, luxuriance, sacrifice, betrayal, and deeply laid conspiracies. Not since Dune has there been an epic on the scale of Kushiel's Dart—a massive tale about the violent death of an old age and the birth of a new.
“A very sophisticated fantasy, intricately plotted and a fascinating read.” —Robert Jordan
“A beautifully written story and a gem of a fantasy novel.” —The Associated Press
“This brilliant and daring debut catapults Carey immediately into the top rank of fantasy novelists.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Making a marvelous debut, Carey spins a breathtaking epic starring an unflinching yet poignantly vulnerable heroine.” —Booklist, starred review
“With her provocative debut novel, Jacqueline Carey introduces herself as an extraordinarily talented writer…Ms. Carey weaves an exquisite tapestry of politics, intrigue, history, magic, desire and fate into a breathtaking epic that will captivate readers.” —Romantic Times, Top Pick/Gold Medal, 4½ stars
“Jacqueline Carey astonishes with her first novel…sexy and sometimes shocking, if you don’t mind your eyeballs popping out every couple of chapters, this is a swell tale.” —The Detroit Free Press
“Compulsively readable…a saga worthy of the field’s best writer on such a scale, George R. R. Martin. It’s an astonishing debut.” —Locus
“The highly distinctive voice of the protagonist, Phedre, captured me within the first few pages of the novel and held me spellbound.... This is a stunning debut novel.” —Juliet Marillier