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Catrina Prager
Hearthender tells the story of a demented Oracle, who preaches the destruction of Amagiraea at any cost. Of men desperate to protect their homes, as war slowly engulfs the entirety of the known world. Of women who, bereft of worthy idols, become gods to their own people. It is a story of war, quest, and political intrigue. A hundred years ago, the Veshini Isles started sinking into the Long Sea, forcing their denizens to find new homes, and with them, a new identity. Fast-forward four generations, the island-dwellers are no longer Veshini. They are no longer refugees. For a time, they were vassals of the ruling Mongolath, but the Lily Rebellion changed all that. Today, now, they are Amagiraeans. Their own people, with their own legends. ...and they are at war. Except this is unlike any war they’ve heard tell of. Protection by bow and blade is one thing, but Prince Adelras must protect his folk from the minds of their fellow men, and the Oracle’s rotten zealots. Far from this, in the nook of the mountain, at Arrowsfate, there are whispers of witchcraft.  Except Abiny is no witch. She just wants to find out what resides at the bottom of Mourner’s Lake. She drowns, in her dreams, and each time, feels her sanity slip. Only her baby’s cries manage to pull her back. But can she solve her dream riddle before the shadows of the mountain path catch up with her? She's started hearing a voice, telling her she is destined for more than this. That there is something, a sleeper self inside her, that needs awakening. Except not everyone's destiny in life is to be the hero of their tale -- will Abiny throw in her lot with the war-mongers, or the Amagiraeans?