In a fantastical kingdom in the desert, wizards (who have always been male) are losing their magic—and women are gaining it. Before, women having power was so unthinkable that there wasn’t even a word for women who can do magic. Now they can, and many are being brutally murdered. The king’s concubine and the one woman accepted into the Sun Mage academy join forces to stop the murders. All this set against a tale of religions, classes, and personalities struggling for control as society itself changes. happyelfling and I like King Oryn and Summerchild the best, and in fact, we wish the novel could have focused on them instead of dividing itself into so many disparate characters. There were just too many plot points and characters, and it slowed down the mystery.