TITLE: The Black City
GENRE: YA Fantasy
Fifteen-year-old Amalia, a pacifist witch unable to perform magic in a violent world, must journey to the Black City and battle dark creatures, flesh traders, and mixed-breed thieves in an attempt to find her twin brother before their sixteenth birthday. She has one month to restore the powerful twin magic fueled only by their connection. If she fails they will not only lose their powers, but their freedom, and ultimately, their lives.
The infant will be dead before the waning crescent.
It’s the fate of all witch boys—death within days. But I admire him anyway, bundled against the winter as he is in his mother’s arms. His mother is only seventeen, two years older than I am. I try to push down the envy I’m feeling—she’s important, respected. Pitied, yes, because her baby will die. But still, she is a mother; she is honored. She was chosen.
She smiles at me. “Send my gratitude to your mother for her assistance in Henry’s birth.”
My mother, the midwife. “I will.”
She nods and joins the throng of witches exiting the library, on their way to the Festival. Some of the witches approach her to greet the baby. Their stricken faces when they learn he is a boy make me wonder why she brought him out at all. Perhaps she believes he will survive. It is common for young mothers to think so.
I hug my arms around myself, my Christmas sweater weak protection against the windy winter solstice. None of the Selene Coven celebrates Christmas; it’s an old holiday practiced by the Ungifteds long ago. Strange as it is, I enjoy the knitted green tree adorned with red candles.
I look up, as do several of the older witches. I spot Tamryn’s head of dark blond hair swimming toward me in the sea of women. Tamryn—loud, bright, and extremely gifted—has never understood my desire to live beneath notice.