On the day of her Presenting, in front of the entire Byern Court, 17-year-old Cyrene Strohm's lifelong plans come to fruition when she's chosen for one of the most prestigious positions in her homeland - an Affiliate to the Queen. Or so she thinks. When Cyrene receives a mysterious letter and an unreadable book, she finds nothing is as it seems.
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Cyrene Strohm is a Queen's Affiliate, a high-ranking official of the court of Byern, with power and privilege to spare. But she's also a keeper of dangerous secrets: like the fact that she holds the heart of the King, and that she possesses magic in a world where magic no longer exists. Determined to discover what this means and how to use her newfound abilities, Cyrene sets off for the distant land of Eleysia, an island nation where Affiliates are strictly forbidden from entering. But the journey is perilous, and the destination may mean utter ruin.