The House of the Tiger has skillfully ruled Merina in times of peace. But now the indomitable armies of the Emperor Balthasar stand poised to crush the vulnerable city/state. And in the enemy's midst is the gray mage Apolon - foul necromancer who serves the Dreadful Dark . . . and whose mission it is to satisfy his Master's terrible hungers with living souls, the Heart of a Goddess, and the blood of a Princess.
For Adele, aging Dowager Queen, for ruling Queen Lydana, and for Princess Shelyra, lithe, impetuous, ingenious Designated Daughter, the battle seems hopeless - for they possess no defense, save for their wiles and weapons of the spirit. But the Tiger is a cunning beast, not to be underestimated. And when cornered, she bares her teeth . . . and strikes.