Reading/Interest Level: Intermediate, Young Adult
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Tachyon Publications
Shai is a forger; she creates beautiful copies of artwork of various kinds. She is caught trying to place a forgery is placed in prison. However, her captors want something from Shai, something that will prevent them from killing her, at least temporarily. The Emperor is unconscious, and Shai is charged with the task of forging a new soul for him that will restore him to his place on the throne. She is held captive while working on the forgery and must devise a way to escape with her life even as she works night and day on the impossible task. Only one man, Gaotona, is a possible ally, and even he is not to be trusted. Shai must rely on her wits and her talents to find a solution.
The plot is fast paced and gripping. We are immediately pulled into Shai's world and want her to be successful in both completing her task and escaping her captors. The details of her world, the way the magic works, particularly the forging, is a little confusing. However, for those who love fantasy, it's easy to ignore the logistical constraints of our world and delve into this magical world of forging, blood sealing, etc. The author does a great job of helping you get to know Shai and her passions and desires. We are drawn to her sense of right and wrong, even though it may be different than our world. The story gets moving immediately and never slows down.