Tor.com content by

Beth Bernobich

Fiction and Excerpts [5]
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Fiction and Excerpts [5]

Allegiance (Excerpt)

, || King Leos of Károví, the tyrannical despot whose magic made him near immortal, is finally dead. Ilse Zhalina watched as the magical jewels that gave him such power reunited into a single essence, a manifestly God-like creature who then disappeared into the cosmic void. Ilse is now free to fulfill her promise to Valara Baussay, the rogue Queen of Morennioù, who wants to return to her kingdom and claim her throne.

Thief of War

, || Arbija will do anything to stop the Erythandran Empire from conquering her homeland. She will take on a new name, a new past, even a new face, all so she can infiltrate the palace and steal the Empire's more powerful magical artifacts. With these weapons, surely she can defend her people and keep them safe and free. Can she succeed where her sister failed?

Writing Prompts: The Paper Airplane

Writing Prompts on Tor.com presents a piece of original art and asks sci-fi/fantasy authors to write a very short story (or perhaps a poem!) reacting to or inspired by it. This month’s Writing Prompts features new contributions from authors Beth Bernobich, Tina Connolly, Max Gladstone, and J.A. Souders.

The art for this round of Writing Prompts is by Victor Mosquera. You can jump right to an author’s story by clicking on their name:

[Writing prompts]

Allegiance (Excerpt)

Check out Allegiance, the conclusion to Beth Bernobich’s River of Souls trilogy, available October 29th from Tor Books!

King Leos of Károví, the tyrannical despot whose magic made him near immortal, is finally dead. Ilse Zhalina watched as the magical jewels that gave him such power reunited into a single essence, a manifestly God-like creature who then disappeared into the cosmic void. Ilse is now free to fulfill her promise to Valara Baussay, the rogue Queen of Morennioù, who wants to return to her kingdom and claim her throne.

Pulled by duty and honor, Ilse makes this long journey back to where her story began, to complete the journey she attempted lives and centuries before and bring peace between the kingdoms. Along the way she learns some hard truths and finally comes to a crossroads of power and magic. She must decide if duty is stronger than a love that she has sought through countless lifetimes. Will Isle give up her heart’s desire so that her nation can finally know lasting peace?

[Read an Excerpt]

Thief of War

Arbija will do anything to stop the Erythandran Empire from conquering her homeland. She will take on a new name, a new past, even a new face, all so she can infiltrate the palace and steal the Empire’s more powerful magical artifacts. With these weapons, surely she can defend her people and keep them safe and free. Can she succeed where her sister failed?

This novella was acquired and edited by senior editor Claire Eddy.

[Read “Thief of War” by Beth Bernobich]

Queen’s Hunt (Excerpt)

We’ve got the first chapter from the second installment to Beth Bernobich’s River of Souls series—Queen’s Hunt, out July 17:

Ilse Zhalina has left to start a new life in a garrisoned fort, leagues from her estranged lover,Raul Kosenmark. The violent quarrel that ended Ilse and Raul’s relationship was quite public. And also, quite fake. They hope tomislead Kosenmark’s enemies so that he can continue to influence the politics of thekingdom in an attempt to stave off an ill-advised war, while keeping Ilse safe from royal assassins who would kill anyone Raul is close to.Ilse longs for Raul, but is set on her own quest to find one of the three fabled jewels of Lir. One of the jewels is held by King Dzavek, sworn enemy of Veraene, who has used the jewel’s power to live for centuries. Ilse seeks one of the other stones to counterbalance Dzavek’s efforts to destroy her country.

In her search, she encounters a shipwrecked prisoner from another land, a woman who has a secret of her own…and the second jewel in her keeping. The two women become allies in their quest for the third jewel, because finding and controlling these stones could mean salvation for both of their nations. And their failure the ruin of their peoples.

[Read more]

Passion Play (Excerpt)

We hope you enjoy this excerpt from Passion Play, which comes out today. You can also check out Beth Bernobich’s Tor.com story, “River of Souls,” set in the world of the novel.

 

CHAPTER 1

In the game of word links, a large vocabulary was not always an advantage. Words indeed were necessary—the game consisted entirely of words given back and forth, and each response had to connect to the previous one. The good players possessed a quick mind and the ability to recognize patterns. Those who could see the unexpected connections, however, inevitably won.

A simple game with endless strategies and unexpected side-effects.

[Therez Zhalina watched Klara’s face intently…]

River of Souls

This story is also available for download from major ebook retailers.

When Asa left his home in Ysterien, his family gave him three gifts.

The first was passage on the fastest trade ship sailing between Ysterien’s chief port of Karda and its sister in the province of Pommersien—an extravagant gift but a necessary one. Each year, fewer merchants dared the overland routes between Ysterien and the empire over the mountains. The historians claimed the Erythandran Empire had fallen twenty years before, but it was falling still, a slow, erratic, and seemingly endless descent. Like a land besieged by drought, its borders crumbled, its provinces shrank into new and smaller kingdoms with uncertain futures, like dust caught and driven by a hot wind.

[The second gift…]