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Publisher's Summary

Meet Tess, a brave new heroine from beloved epic fantasy author Rachel Hartman.
In the medieval kingdom of Goredd, women are expected to be ladies, men are their protectors, and dragons can be whomever they choose. Tess is none of these things. Tess is...different. She speaks out of turn, has wild ideas, and can't seem to keep out of trouble. Then Tess goes too far. What she's done is so disgraceful, she can't even allow herself to think of it. Unfortunately, the past cannot be ignored. So Tess's family decide the only path for her is a nunnery.
But on the day she is to join the nuns, Tess chooses a different path for herself. She cuts her hair, pulls on her boots, and sets out on a journey. She's not running away, she's running towards something. What that something is, she doesn't know. Tess just knows that the open road is a map to somewhere else - a life where she might belong.
Returning to the spellbinding world of the Southlands she created in the award-winning, New York Times best-selling novel Seraphina, Rachel Hartman explores self-reliance and redemption in this wholly original fantasy.  
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.
©2018 Rachel Hartman (P)2018 Listening Library
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Critic Reviews

"In her triumphant return to the world of Seraphina (2012), Hartman introduces Tess Dombegh, one of Seraphina’s stepsiblings.... This is a perfect example of a familiar fantasy trope being given new dimension through empathetic characters and exquisite storytelling. At first appearing bitter and self-pitying, Tess reveals compassion, courage, and resilience on her journey, which is as emotional and spiritual as it is physical. This achingly real portrayal of a young woman whose self-loathing takes help to heal is a perceptive examination of rape culture rare in high fantasy. Not to be ignored, this is also a fascinating road trip adventure. Absolutely essential." (Booklist)
"Hartman returns to Goredd with the tale of another young woman who breaks the rules in search of herself. Now 17, haunted by past mistakes, immersed in self-denial and the need to follow 'proper' behavior, white Tess - who once befriended lizardlike Quigutl and secretly attended lectures - is miserable. Angry, bitter Tess has reason for her feelings but is not always easy to walk with, and the slow reveal of her past makes for a compelling read on the ways in which girls - in the quasi-Renaissance Goredd and also in the real world - are taught to take blame on themselves even when others are culpable. Like Tess' journey, surprising, rewarding, and enlightening, both a fantasy adventure and a meta discourse on consent, shame, and female empowerment." (Kirkus Reviews)
  "[Narrator Katharine] McEwan handles the many invented words and the lisping speech of Tess's quig friend, Pathka, with aplomb. McEwan is an empathetic guide as Tess begins an epic journey both literal and emotional, one that gradually exposes the roots of her anger and hurt. Tess's journey is deeply affecting, and listeners will be glad to have traveled the road with her." (AudioFile)  
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Sana Quijada on 03-08-18


Covered a wide breadth of emotion, thought, and senses.
I am grateful

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By A. Meade on 06-07-18


Wonderful coming of age story. I especially enjoyed walking along side Tess while she grew into a beautiful and confident young woman.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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