Kerstin Hall's Second Spear is the thrilling follow-up to the Nommo Award finalist, The Border Keeper
After surviving the schemes of a vengeful goddess and learning some shattering truths about her former life, the warrior Tyn feels estranged from her role guarding her ruler. Grappling with knowledge of her identity, she unleashes her frustrations on all the wrong people.
When an old enemy returns wielding an unstoppable, realm-crushing weapon and Tyn is swept up in the path of destruction, she must make a choice about who she is and who she wants to be.
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On Sale: 08/16/2022 ISBN: 9781250250162
0.00 x 0.00 inches , 272 Pages
5.00 x 7.95 inches , 288 Pages
“The second book in Hall’s Mkalis Cycle will not disappoint readers of her standout fantasy The Border Keeper (2019). When readers reenter this rich, complex world of twisting godly politics and rule-based realms, Hall zooms them in on Tyn. She’s still recovering from the last book’s events, hurt and reeling, trying to balance new revelations with her loyalty to Res Lfae, ruler of Tahmais. When a lying villain with an impossible weapon comes to her realm to tear it apart, Tyn has to band together with the reticent First Spear Vehn, who hates her, and the cynical Rion, who’s still new to Mkalis and completely lost. All three characters go through convincing transformations in this eerie, suspenseful story based in Hall’s deeply unsettling world that gleams at the corners. The scenes are cinematically visceral, with pages soaked in sensory detail, atmosphere, and the tense promise of danger lurking at the edges of every rule-bound realm. Readers will feel they’re dropped into the story—and that will undoubtedly make their skin crawl, in all the right ways. This horror-fantasy will have readers waiting impatiently for the next volume in Hall’s dark series.” — Booklist, Starred Review
Praise for The Border Keeper
"There are no everyday elements to Kerstin Hall’s debut novella. . . . A phantasmagorical picaresque through a lushly realised underworld, populated by a grotesque bestiary of fantastical creatures, with danger dogging our protagonists’ every step. This twisty example of the new weird genre examines love, loss and loyalty, packing skilful world-building and a powerful emotional punch into a little over 200 pages."—The Guardian
"Beautifully and vividly imagined. Eerie, lovely, and surreal."—Ann Leckie
“A labyrinth of demons, dead gods, cranky psychopomps, and broken all-too-human lives. Hall is by turns wry and lush, genuine and venomous. So can I have the next one already?”—Max Gladstone
"Quite but intricate, shored up by rich prose. . . . The tangle of love, loss, grief, and regret that is gradually exposed as the book’s emotional core feels tender and profound. Readers more interested in the journey than the destination will savor this venture into the underworld."—Publishers Weekly
"A fantasy forged in the belly of dreams, blurring the lines between gods, demons, and humans as they grapple for control of a slippery narrative that keeps them moving through different realms, bodies and states of waking and death. A singular debut with no easy answers and beauty to spare."—Indrapramit Das
"Lush prose weaves around a dark heart in this twisty debut from Kerstin Hall. A fantastical wonder on every page, but one coated in blood, death and suffering.”—Neon Yang
"Hall combines a sharp observational descriptive talent with brilliantly realised characters. The Border Keeper draws you deeply into every world it explores and keeps you on edge the whole way through. The story is dreamlike in the way of the most powerful dreams—vividly bright and crystal clear."—Emily Tesh
"The underworld created here is rich and strange, populated with children transformed into translucent crabs, armored, cloven-hooved bird-faced creatures carrying masked riders, and glittering parties where the wrong word can kill."—Kirkus Reviews
"The mysterious, dark, and often violent worlds envelop readers in a cacophony of mystery and fantasy."—Library Journal
“With parallels to a range of mythologies, Hall’s elegant descriptive language evokes a vivid world of lost souls and revenge in this fast-paced fantasy debut.”—Booklist
"The Dark Tower meets Ursula Vernon's 'The Tomato Thief' in a journey through abyssal realms as vivid and strange as Pan's Labyrinth, The Border Keeper is a captivating and moving read from a bright new voice."—Scott H. Andrews, Editor-in Chief of Beneath Ceaseless Skies
"The Border Keeper is Hall’s debut into novella-length works, following on from her successful short story releases. Her poetic and crisp prose take the reader on a brisk-paced journey through a chilling landscape.”—Aurealis