A heretic thief is the empire’s only hope in this fascinating tale that inhabits the same world as the popular novel, Elantris.
is a Forger, a foreigner who can flawlessly copy and re-create any item
by rewriting its history with skillful magic. Condemned to death after
trying to steal the emperor’s scepter, she is given one opportunity to
save herself. Though her skill as a Forger is considered an abomination
by her captors, Shai will attempt to create a new soul for the emperor,
who is almost dead.
Probing deeply into his life, she discovers
Emperor Ashravan’s truest nature—and the opportunity to exploit it. Her
only possible ally is one who is truly loyal to the emperor, but
councilor Gaotona must overcome his prejudices to understand that Shai’s
forgery is as much artistry as it is deception.
Brimming with magic and political intrigue, this deftly woven fantasy delves into the essence of a living spirit.
Gaotona ran his fingers across the thick canvas, inspecting one of the greatest works of art he had ever seen."
I'm pretty sure I've never read anything of Brandon's this short. Not even a prologue. :)
In Shai's world, any object or person, can be rewritten. Their 'soul' can be manipulated to resemble or become something it isn't. Shai is given the task to rewrite the Emperor's soul and bring him mentally back to life. Many of the leaders come to her and ask her to write a back door to the Emperor so they can control him and the kingdom.
Shai has one hundred days to study the Emperor's life through journals and interviews. Then she has to make sure the 'soulstamps' work for which she will apply them to the Emperor.
It was fun to read this book. I enjoyed to smarts of Shai and the intrigue of Gaotona. And the magic was cool.
This book is up for a Hugo award for novella.