cover image Daughter of Redwinter

Daughter of Redwinter

Ed McDonald. Tor, $27.99 (352p) ISBN 978-1-250-81171-4

This uncommonly vivid and vigorous sword and sorcery novel from McDonald (Blackwing) follows Raine, a rootless young woman whose only certainty is that she must never reveal that she has “spirit-sight,” the ability to see ghosts. It’s a mortal crime in her society, where people fear both the unknown and, especially, invasion by the dead. After Raine innocently aids the mysteriously ensorcelled Hazia LacFroome to rouse one of the ancient wizard-kings, she hastens to correct her mistake and is taken under the protection of Ulovar LacNaithe, head of one of the clans that make up the Draoihn, elite warriors of the “fortress-monastery” Redwinter. Inside Redwinter, Raine must navigate relationships with Ulovar’s heir, the indecisive Ovitus; Sanvaunt, a forbiddingly grim swordsman; and her new, dear friend, Esher. Then there are “Those Who See,” the skulking rabble who share Raine’s spirit-sight and who insist that the Draoihn are murderously wrong. Meanwhile, the ghostly Queen of Feathers hovers enigmatically behind everything. Raine must use all her wits, not to mention her skill with bows and arrows, to survive in this world and to find her place in it. McDonald makes familiar story and character beats come alive with imagination and energy. The result is a superior start to a promising new saga. (June)