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In the land of the Five Hundred Kingdoms, if you can't carry out your legendary role, life is no fairy tale. . . . Elena Klovis was supposed to be her kingdom's Cinderella--until fate left her with a completely inappropriate prince! So she set out to make a new life for herself. But breaking with "The Tradition" was no easy matter--until she got a little help from her own fairy godmother. Who promptly offered Elena a most unexpected job. . . . Now, instead of sleeping in the chimney, she has to deal with arrogant, stuffed-shirt princes who keep trying to rise above their place in the tale. And there's one in particular who needs to be dealt with. . . . Sometimes a fairy godmother's work is never done. . . .
A COMMAND PERFORMANCE BY FANTASY'S GRAND DIVA<P>Mercedes Lackey has, in a few short years, soared to the peak of the fantasy field, and her thousands of enthusiastic readers clamor for more and more. Now comes a volume demonstrating the wide range of her talent, running the gamut from her beloved Bardic fantasies to urban fantasy set in the modern world; from science fiction adventure to chilling horror. And throughout Fiddler Fair, Lackey's sheer storytelling skill will hold the reader spellbound. Learn what happens when animal rights fanatics try to "liberate" genetically reconstructed dinosaurs. Follow Lawrence of Arabia into the desert to meet a power beyond human comprehension; and be with King Arthur, reborn into the present day, when he again gains possession of the enchanted sword Excalibur. And, in a very weird encounter of the most bizarre kind, learn why an alien from a UFO took an unusual interest in a battered Chevy pickup truck.<P>Fiddler Fair is a feast for the multitudes of Lackeyfans everywhere -- and for new readers, a powerful introduction to the most significant new fantasy writer of the decade.
An alchemist bungles a transformation and is trapped in wolf form. Rosalind can help him regain his humanity, but there is another alchemist, and another temptation.
Ilya, son of a Russian prince, is largely ignored by his father and tormented by his larger, older brothers. His only friends are three old people: a priest, a magician, and a woman who toils in the palace dairy. From them Ilya learns faith, a smattering of magic, and the power of love--all of which he will need desperately, for his life is about to be turned upside-down. The prince's magnificent cherry orchard is visited at midnight by the legendary Firebird, whose wings are made of flame. Ilya's brothers' attempts capture the magical creature fail. When Ilya tries to catch the Firebird, he sees her as a beautiful woman and earns a magical gift: the speech of animals. Banished, the young man journeys through a fantastical Russia full of magical mazes, enchanted creatures, and untold dangers. As happens in the best fairy tales, Ilya falls in love with an enchanted princess, but to win her freedom will be no easy task.
The seventh daughter of the Sea King, Ekaterina is more than a pampered princess--she's also the family spy. Which makes her the perfect emissary to check out interesting happenings in the neighboring kingdom...and nothing interests her more than Sasha, the seventh son of the king of Belrus. Ekaterina suspects he's far from the fool people think him. But before she can find out what lies beneath his facade, she is kidnapped!Trapped in a castle at the mercy of a possessive Jinn, Ekaterina knows her chances of being found are slim. Now fortune, a fool and a paper bird are the only things she can count on--along with her own clever mind and intrepid heart....
In this chronicle of the early history of Valdemar, Mercedes Lackey's bestselling world, a thirteen year- old orphan named Magpie escapes a life of slavery in the gem mines when he is chosen by one of the magical Companion horses of Valdemar to be trained as a Herald. Thrust into the center of a legend in the making, Magpie discovers talents he never knew he had and witnesses the founding of the great Heralds?
For as long as she could remember, Marina Roeswood had lived in an old, rambling farmhouse in rural Cornwall in the care of close friends of her wealthy, aristocratic parents. In the seventeen years that she had been fostered by Sebastian and Margherita Tarrant, and Margherita's brother, Thomas Buford, she had lived an almost idyllic existence. As the ward of three bohemian artists in turn-of-the-century England, she had grown to be a free thinker in an environment of fertile creativity and cultural sophistication. under their loving private tutelage, Marian had learned to read and translate five languages, and was as literate as any well-bred woman of her era.<P> But the real core of her education was far outside societal norms. For she and her foster parents were Elemental Masters of magic., and learning to control her growing powers was Marina's primary focus. Each of them commanded the magic of a specific element. Margherita and her brother Thomas were Earth Masters, Sebastian was a Fire Master, and Marina herself was a fledgling Water Master of enormous potential, with a lesser affinity for the element of Air. Marina loved nothing more than to sit by a stream or small waterfall, watching or communing with the lesser Water Elementals, Undines, and Naiads. When she played her lute, harp, or flute, she was sometimes event graced by the presence of Air Elementals, the Sylphs and Zephyrs whom Sebastian had said were her allies, though why she might need allies, Marina had no clue.<P> Actually, there were quite a few mysteries about her life that Marina wasn't able to solve. Why, for example, had she never seen her parents, or been to Oakhurst, her family's ancestral manor in Devon? Her mother and father assured her fervently, in every letter, that they loved her and longed for her presence, yet if her parents loved her so much, why had they sent her away so young, and why had they never once visited her? And why hadn't her real parents, who were also Earth Masters, trained her themselves? Why did neither her foster parents nor her real parents ever attend the Great Circle of Elemental Masters in London? That there was a secret about all this she had known from the time she had begun to question the world around her. Yet try as she might, she could get no clues out of her guardians and instinct told her that a confrontation would cause great pain to her birth mother.<P> But Marina would have answers to her questions all too soon.<P> For with the sudden death of her birth parents while on holiday in Italy, Marina's life was transformed beyond all recognition. Taken from the only home and "parents" she had ever known and brought to the cold and lofty halls of Oakhurst Manor, she met her new guardian -- her closest surviving blood relative -- her father's eldest sister Arachne. Cold, aristocratic, and superior, Aunt Arachne was an industrialist. Her pottery factories brought her a great deal of wealth and power, but Marina sensed that Arachne's real power came from something far different than commerce. For Arachne exuded a dark magical aura unlike anything Marina had encountered, a stifling evil that seemed to threaten Marina's very spirit. Slowly Marina realized that her aunt was the very embodiment of th endanger her parents had been hiding her from in the backwoods of Cornwall. But could Marina unravel the secrets of her life in time to save her from the evil which had been seeking her for nearly eighteen years?
Three unforgettable new stories: A Tangled Web by New York Times bestselling author MERCEDES LACKEY: Kidnapping Persephone should have been an easy task. But in the Five Hundred Kingdoms, nothing's ever simple-and the wrong blonde goddess is stolen by mistake, leaving Prince Leopold without his new bride. At least until he braves the realm of the dead to get her back...Cast in Moonlight by New York Times bestselling author MICHELLE SAGARA: Barely a teenager, Kaylin Neya is a thief, a fugitive and an attempted assassin. She also has a smart mouth, sharp wits and mysterious markings on her skin. All of which make her perfect bait for a child prostitution sting in the city of Elantra--if she survives her first meeting with the Hawks! Retribution by CAMERON HALEY: In the underworld, there are tricks to killing.Like executing rivals at crossroads so ghosts won't follow you home. But sometimes retribution is hard to avoid-and now a supernatural hit man has a contract on Domino Riley's life. Luckily she knows a thing or two about death....
In the age of the Mazonians women rule through magic - and men suffer what they must.
England in the 16th century is a nation at a fatal fork in time, leading to two possible futures foreseen by the Sidhe of Elfhame Avalon. Either an evil queen will join forces with the Inquisition and rule with a blood-spattered iron hand, threatening humans and elves alike--or a benevolent, red-haired queen named Elizabeth will rule wisely and well.
Magpie is a thirteen-year-old orphan chosen by one of the magical Companion horses of Valdemar and taken to the capital city, Haven, to be trained as a Herald. Like all Heralds, Magpie learns that he has a hidden Gift-the Gift of telepathy. But life at the court is not without obstacles. When Mags is "recognized" by foreign secret operatives whose purpose is unknown, Mags himself comes under suspicion. Who are Magpie's parents-who is he, really? Can Mags solve the riddle of his parentage and his connection with the mysterious spies-and prove his loyalty-before the king and court banish him as a traitor?
All world governments have been simultaneously attacked by soldiers in giant mecha robotic suits with the swastika symbol of the Third Reich on their metal arms. If these were Nazis, where had they been hiding since the end of World War II? And where had they gotten armour and weapons far in advance of anything on the planet?
Teenage passion meets centuries-old magic ... Prom night is going to be hell! Diane Tregarde hadn't expected to find a malevolent combo of sex and blood magic at Tulsa's Jenks High.
National best-selling fantasy author Mercedes Lackey creates a vivid, dynamic fusion of the cultures of ancient Egypt and legendary Atlantis with the most exciting and believable portrayal of dragons ever imagined. The first book in this thrilling new series introduces us to a young slave who dreams of becoming a jouster-one of the few warriors who can actually ride a flying dragon. And so, in secret, he begins to raise his own dragon. . .
If Rune could get the proper training, she could become one of the finest bards her world has ever seen. But her advantages are few, so when she decides to play her fiddle for the Ghost of Skull Hill, he agrees to a bargain--an arrangement that could mean silver for her future quest . . . or her death at the hands of the ghost.
After her family is killed, Spirit White is taken to Oakhurst Academy, a combination orphanage and school for those with magical powers, where she and her new friends investigate when students start mysteriously disappearing.
This whole series and some other books are set in our own time and almost always take place in large cities. Hence they are often referred to as Urban Fantasies. In this series, Eric Banyon who is a bard and also capable of interacting with the fair folk who live parallel to us, finds himself called upon to interpose himself and his friends between the machinations of the evil fay and the world's survival. It sounds a little dramatic but, in general, these books offer vivid characterization, good depictions of urban teen-age life, and good fun and great storytelling.
FROM THE BACK COVER: MAGE-CRAFT-- Though Vanyel has been born with near-legendary abilities to work both Herald and Mage magic, he wants no part of such things. Nor does he seek a warrior's path, wishing instead to become a Bard. Yet such talent as his if left untrained may prove a menace not only to Vanyel but to others as well. So he is sent to be fostered with his aunt, Savil, one of the famed Herald-Mages of Valdemar. But, strong-willed and self-centered, Vanyel is a challenge which even Savil can not master alone. For soon he will become the focus of frightening forces, lending his raw magic to a spell that unleashes terrifying wyr-hunters on the land. And by the time Savil seeks the assistance of a Shin'a'in Adept, Vanyel's wild talent may have already grown beyond anyone's ability to contain, placing Vanyel, Savil, and Valdemar itself in desperate peril.
Valdemar, the once peaceful kingdom, is now besieged. The king lays dying, the neighboring kingdom of Karse wages war on it, and the dark magic forces are massing for the final blow.
The Wild Magic is taking its toll on the land. Many Heralds and Herald-Mages have died, and Vanyel is almost at the end of his strength, in need of a long respite.
WOLVES, WITH OCCASIONAL MUSIC They'd only gotten as far as Columbus Circle when suddenly half-a-dozen enormous black shapes came lunging out from among the other cars toward them. After a moment's stunned incredulity, Eric realized what he was seeing. Wolves-but worse. They were to normal wolves what a forest fire was to a birthday candle-they were all the primeval terrors of night and the ancient forest given fur and fangs and flesh. He threw a shield around himself and Lady Day just as one of the beasts dodged in, snapping at his foot. Suddenly Eric heard a jangle of disharmonic harpsong, and his shield was ripped away. Before he could react, he felt powerful jaws clamp down on his ankle, yanking him from Lady Day's saddle and hurling him to the ground. One of the dire-wolves landed on top of him, knocking the breath from him, and beneath it all, the harp played on, like Stravinsky on crack, making it hard to think. Lady Day-in horse form now-stood like a stag at bay, surrounded by a panting half-circle of dire-wolves. Just beyond her a black limousine stood parked. Eric readied his spells. The back door of the limousine swung open. Jormin ap Galever sat in the back. He was holding Magnus against his chest, with a silver knife to Magnus's throat. Magnus's head lolled limply; he was unconscious, but Eric could see that his brother was still alive. "Will you join us, Bard?" Jormin called cheerily.
These are a series of stories about Tarma and Kethry, characters from the Valdemar series.
United by sword-spell and the will of the Goddess, Tarma and Kethry swore a blood oath to carry on their mutual fight against evil. Together they set forth to fulfill their destiny.
Tarma and Kethry set out in search of their vanished leader Idra, who failed to return from a journey to her home kingdom of Rethwellan.
Kellen Tavadon, son of the Arch-Mage Lycaelon, thought he knew the way the world worked. His father, leading the wise and benevolent Council of Mages, protected and guided the citizens of the Golden City of the Bells. Then Kellen found the forbidden books of Wild Magic-or did they find him! Their magic felt like a living thing, guided by the hearts and minds of those who practiced it and benefited from it. Questioning everything he has known, Kellen discovers too many of the City's dark secrets. Banished, with the Outlaw Hunt on his heels, Kellen invokes Wild Magic-and finds himself running for his life with a unicorn at his side. Rescued by a unicorn, healed by a female Wildmage who knows more about Kellen than anyone outside the City should, meeting Elven royalty and warriors in a world full of magical beings-Kellen both revels in and fears his new freedom. All the Mages of the City agreed that practicing Wild Magic corrupted a Mage. Turned him into a Demon. Would that be Kellen's fate? Deep in Obsidian Mountain, the Demons are waiting. Since their defeat in the last great War, they've been biding their time, sowing seeds of distrust between their human and Elven enemies. When the Demons rise to make war, there will be no alliance between High and Wild Magic to stand against them. And then all the world will belong to the Endarkened. From the Bookjacket
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