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  • Trickster's Queen
  • Written by Tamora Pierce
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  • Trickster's Queen
  • Written by Tamora Pierce
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On Sale: November 30, 2004
Pages: 480 | ISBN: 978-0-375-89053-6
Published by : Random House Books for Young Readers RH Childrens Books

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Read by Trini Alvarado
On Sale: September 28, 2004
ISBN: 978-0-8072-1958-4
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ABOUT THE BOOK ABOUT THE BOOK
ABOUT THE AUTHOR ABOUT THE AUTHOR
PRAISE & AWARDS PRAISE & AWARDS
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fantasy (384) fiction (130) young adult (121) tortall (91) ya (88) magic (61)
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Synopsis|Excerpt

Synopsis

Aly’s adventure continues. . . . No longer a slave, Alanna’s daughter is now spying as part of an underground rebellion against the colonial rulers of the Copper Isles. The people in the rebellion believe that a prophecy in which a new queen will rise up to take the throne is about to be realized. Aly is busy keeping the potential teenage queen and her younger siblings safe, while also keeping her in the dark about her future. But Aly, who is usually adept at anticipating danger and changes, is in for a few nasty surprises.
New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Tamora Pierce captured the imagination of readers 20 years ago with Alanna: The First Adventure. As of August 2003, she has written 21 books including three completed quartets: The Song of the Lioness, The Immortals, and The Protector of the Small, set in the fantasy realm of Tortall. She has also written the Circle of Magic and The Circle Opens quartets. The author lives in New York, NY.


From the Hardcover edition.

Excerpt

There were spells written deep within the walls that surrounded the Balitang home. They appeared as a shimmering silver blaze in Aly’s Sight. As the processsion passed through the gate, she saw magic sunk below the stones, wood, and carvings. It was partially covered by common magical signs for protection and health that any house possessed. They gleamed silver in the carving on the foundation stones and front steps. Unless someone else in Rajmuat had the Sight in the strength Aly had it, no one would see anything but the everyday spells. The raka mages were very good at keeping their work hidden.
Ornately carved pillars lined the long front porch and framed the front door of Balitang House. The roof was layered, each lesser roof sporting upturned ends. After the summer’s heat and rains, and the winter’s cold and rains, with no staff to keep the place up, the house should have looked run-down. But this house gleamed. Not one clay tile was missing from the roof. The stucco was the color of fresh milk. Gold and silver leaf glimmered on the eaves and on the carved wood above the posts.
The staff was lined up on either side of the flagstone road. They wore luarin tunics and breeches or hose, raka wrapped jackets and sarongs, or combinations of styles in an explosion of colors that made Aly blink. Housemaids wore white headcloths; the men wore round white caps. They all looked to be wearing every piece of jewelry they owned.
Aly counted. Nearly sixty people were here, not including the men-at-arms. Balitang House was as fully staffed as it had been the previous spring.
The duchess could not afford this. When King Oron had exiled them, he had made them show their loyalty with gold, emptying Duke Mequen’s coffers. Winnamine had drawn on her dowry to pay household costs. If Prince Rubinyan had not virtually commanded her to return to court, she would have remained at Tanair, which was affordable.
“Fesgao,” Aly murmured. The man had come to stand by her elbow. “Who’s paying for this?”
“Don’t worry,” the raka man told her. “It seems our situation has changed. Ulasim will explain.” He went to help the duchess out of the litter.
Aly looked at the steps. Ulasim waited there on the ground, smiling. He was a hard-muscled man, in his forties with the brown skin of a full-blood raka. His nose had been mashed against his face on several occasions by someone not kindly disposed toward him. A tightness in Aly’s heart loosened at the sight of the head footman. He was the leader of the far-flung raka conspiracy, wise and strong at every trial. He had drawn Aly from suspicion to respect. Back under Ulasim’s wing, the Balitang family seemed much less exposed. Back under Ulasim’s eye, Aly could turn to her specialty and leave him to deal with assassins and alliances.
The big raka bowed to Winnamine. As Aly watched, reading his lips, Ulasim told the duchess that they had not spent money they did not have. He reassured her that all would be explained to her satisfaction. once she’d had a chance to eat and rest. As he soothed her, Aly identified a familiar face at Ulasim’s elbow. Quedanga, the housekeeper since Sarai was born, had stayed in Rajmuat when the family left the city. She had now returned to Balitang House.
“How did they afford this?” Dove murmured as Aly handed her down from the litter.
“It will be a lovely tale,” Aly replied, her voice sweet. “Some parts may even be true.”
Dove looked up at Aly, smiling slightly. “You sound as if you wouldn’t put it past them to have raided the royal treasury.”
Aly raised an eyebrow at her mistress. “Do you think they wouldn’t, my lady?”
Dove sighed. “I hope not. It would complicate things.” Dove had understatement down to an art.
Hands folded in front of her, Aly followed Dove toward the house. They did not get far. A tall woman stepped out of the house. She was a silver-haired luarin with perfect posture. Her luarin-style gown was pale blue with a high collar. Instead of the traditional over robe, she wore a stole like the raka wrapped jacket, made of shimmering white lawn.
Sarai and Dove looked at each other. “Aunt Nuritin,” they whispered in shock.
Aly had heard of Nuritin Balitang–or as Sarai and Dove called her, the Dragon. Though Duke Mequen had been technically the head of the family, it was his aunt who ruled it. When he had sunk into mourning for his first duchess, it was Nuritin who had badgered him into making a new marriage and a new life. Among the Balitangs, her word was law. Among the nobles of her generation, her opinion was the first they sought.
It did not bode well that she looked very comfortable in Balitang House.
Winnamine was the first to recover. She approached the old woman with outstretched hands and an apparently genuine smile on her face. “Aunt Nuritin, it’s wonderful to see you. Girls, come greet your great-aunt. Elsren, Petranne, come.”
Aly looked at Ulasim and made sure the nobles couldn’t see her before she hand-signed: Does she live here?
Ulasim nodded slightly.
Again Aly’s fingers flew. Are we safe with her in the house?
Ulasim came over to whisper, “As safe as anywhere in Rajmuat. We’re stuck with the old Stormwing, and that’s that. She will learn nothing we do not allow her to.”
Aly shook her head. “Well, then,” she said, “we’ll all just be one happy family. What harm could come of that?”
Once inside, the duchess looked at her late husband’s aunt. “Lady Nuritin, may we have some time to settle in before we talk? I’m not at my best so early in the morning, and this is quite a surprise.”
“Of course you need rest, all of you,” the old woman said. “Go. Bathe, change, unpack, take naps if you need to. We shall have our talk after lunch, and I can explain everything then.”


From the Hardcover edition.
Tamora Pierce

About Tamora Pierce

Tamora Pierce - Trickster's Queen

Photo © Stephen Mosher

Tamora Pierce is a bestselling author of fantasy books for teenagers. Her books, known for their teenaged girl warriors and wizards, have received critical acclaim and a strong fanbase.

Tamora Pierce won the Margaret A. Edwards Award in 2013 for her "significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature."

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tamora Pierce was drawn to books from a young age. Raised in rural Pennsylvania, the child of a “long, proud line of hillbillies,” her family never had much. “We were poor, but I didn’t know it then. We had a garden where my folks grew fruit and vegetables and our water came from a well,” she explains. But one thing they did have was plenty of books. So Tamora read.

A self-proclaimed “geek,” she devoured fantasy and science fiction novels, and by the age of 12 was mimicking her literary idols and writing her own action-packed stories. It was thanks to her father that Tamora began writing. “He heard me telling myself stories as I did dishes, and he suggested that I try to write some of them down,” Pierce says.

But Tamora’s novels had one major difference: unlike the books she was reading, her stories featured teenaged girl warriors. “I couldn’t understand this lapse of attention on the part of the writers I loved, so until I could talk them into correcting this small problem, I wrote about those girls, the fearless, bold, athletic creatures that I was not, but wanted so badly to be.”

Seventeen years later, after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, a brief career in teen social work and some time spent writing for radio, Tamora Pierce held true to her childhood crusade, and published Alanna: The First Adventure, the first in a quartet about a valiant, young, female warrior. Pierce’s heroine struck a chord with readers across the country and quickly earned her a loyal following.

Pierce is now a #1 New York Times bestselling author and has written twenty-five books, including her newest, BEKA COOPER #2: Bloodhound. “It’s a pretty good life, if I do say so myself. Struggling along as a kid and even through my twenties, it’s the kind of life I dreamed of but never believed I would get. Yet here I am, after a lot of work, a lot of worry, a lot of care for details, and a massive chunk of luck, the kind that brought me such strong friends and readers. Pretty good for a hillbilly, yes? And I never take it for granted,” she says.

Pierce lives in upstate New York with her husband Tim and their three cats and two birds.


PRAISE

“[Tamora Pierce’s heroines] faithfully reiterate an ideal–of feminine power that relies on brains, not beauty; of feminine attractiveness that relies on competence, not helplessness; and of feminine alliances that grow stronger, not weaker, in the face of conflicts.”–The New York Times

BEKA COOPER #1: TERRIER

"With its rollicking adventures [and] appealing characters . . . Terrier will be in strong demand by Pierce's fans. It will keep readers on the edge of their seats."–School Library Journal, Starred

YOUNG WARRIORS
“Memorable characters and well-drawn settings. . . . This timely and appealing anthology will surely help swell the ranks of teenage fantasy readers.” –School Library Journal

TRICKSTER’S QUEEN
“The plot sweeps readers along in a whirlwind of court intrigue, deception, murder, and romance. The humor is wicked, and the plot twists will keep the pages turning to the supremely satisfying end. Teens will be inspired by Aly’s determination, her resourcefulness, and her heart.”–School Library Journal

TRICKSTER’S CHOICE
“Aly arrives fully formed, a snarky, talented uber-heroine. Cameos of old favorites complement a rich cast of new characters. Aly’s difficulty with the complexity of colonialism adds surprising, welcome depth.”–Kirkus Reviews

LADY KNIGHT
“Unrelentingly realistic in its depiction of the horrors of war, this novel draws the reader into a complete and believable fantasy world. Pierce provides exquisite details of the weaponry, topography, and culture of her world, and her control of a voluminous cast of characters is masterful.”–Voice of Youth Advocates
Praise | Awards

Praise

“The humour is wicked, and the plot twists will keep the pages turning to the supremely satisfying end.”—School Library Journal


From the Paperback edition.

Awards

NOMINEE 2007 Colorado Blue Spruce Young Adult Book Award

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