“Lyrical and entertaining fantasy…peopled by well-drawn characters that readers can bond with.”—Kirkus Reviews
The Thirteenth House
Noble-born shape-shifter Kirra Danalustrous has accepted her father’s invitation to style herself as her sister—the heir of Danalustrous—and attend all the social events being held by the Twelve Houses. She is accompanied by Donnal, a peasant and shape-shifter who has served her most of her life. She is delighted to learn that Senneth, Tayse, Justin and Cammon will also be making the social circuit as they escort Princess Amalie to the summer balls. But it’s soon clear that Amalie is under attack from factions that want to overthrow the throne, and Amalie’s uncle Romar, regent of the kingdom, might be in even more danger. Kirra gladly helps protect them both, though it is disastrous when she begins to fall in love with Romar. For Romar is a married man—and half of Kirra’s heart already belongs to Donnal.
Published in hardcover in spring 2006; mass market paperback scheduled for spring of 2007.
Originally, I was going to have Kirra practice her shape-shifting skills on Cammon when they were all gathered in Rappengrass. Once I decided Justin would be a better candidate, it helped me figure out how I would write a pivotal scene in Dark Moon Defender, in which someone has to infiltrate the convent in disguise.
More theme songs from the “monster ballads” CD: Cinderella’s “Don’t Know What You’ve Got Till It’s Gone” (Kirra to Donnal), Hagar/Schon/Arronson/Shrieve’s “Missing You” (Romar to Kirra), Poison’s “Life Goes On” (Kirra to Romar).
My favorite scene:
The one where Donnal leaves. I was actually crying when I wrote it, which took me by surprise.