Raed kissed her again, looked into her eyes and smiled. “Don’t be too long, this captain is aging as we speak.” Then he turned and left her to her moment.

The sea was silvered blue black, and it smelled clean and fresh—the smell of hope perhaps. Sorcha rolled the cigarillo under her nose, anticipating the moment. Then she realized she had not asked Raed for his flint to light it.

A tingle ran along her arm, the slightest burning sensation. Holding up her arm, Sorcha stared at it for a second. The feeling was familiar. When a tiny blue flame danced on the tip of her right hand, she gasped in surprise and delight.

Hand wavering, she lit her cigarillo with it, and then passed it back and forth in front of her eyes. The sensation retreated, and the tiny flame died with it. It had to be a remnant of the power, like the jerking of a dead man, and yet . . . perhaps it was more.

Sorcha Faris sat on the prow of the ship and smiled to herself. Perhaps there was life and hope left—but for the moment she would keep it just for herself.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Born in New Zealand, Philippa Ballantine has always had her head in a book. A corporate librarian for thirteen years, she has a bachelor of arts in English and a bachelor of applied science in library and information science. She is New Zealand’s first podcast novelist, and she has produced four podiobooks. Many of these have been short-listed for the Parsec Award, and she has won a Sir Julius Vogel Award. She is also the coauthor of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences novels with Tee Morris. Philippa is currently in the United States, where her two Siberian cats, Sebastian and Viola, make sure she stays out of trouble. Visit her website at www.pjballantine.com.

Praise for the Book of the Order novels

WRAYTH

“A fast-paced adventure.”

RT Book Reviews

Wrayth has all the hallmarks of Ballantine’s previous Order novels: fast pacing, strong characterization, clever use of tropes.”

Escape Pod

“Ballantine is a master at building worlds without letting the construction get in the way of the story . . . Consistent writing, imaginative stories and well-fleshed-out characters.”

View from Valhalla

“Interesting revelations . . . Red-hot action sequences . . . An enjoyable romp.”

—citybookreview.com

“A power addition to the Book of the Order series . . . A fantasy that does not fail to deliver a powerful punch to readers.”

Snarkymamma


SPECTYR

“Picks up smoothly from [Geist], continuing the fantasy adventure with a mix of romance and power play by the world’s deities . . . Will appeal to the paranormal romance and steampunk crowds.”

Kirkus Reviews

Spectyr keeps up the series’ promise: well-crafted, tightly packed action . . . Should satisfy even die-hard fantasy fans.”

Drying Ink

“A unique, character-driven fantasy that delivers on all levels.”

Smexy Books

“The opening act in Philippa Ballantine’s Book of the Order is a great fantasy, but the second tale is even better . . . A fantastic fantasy.”

Genre Go Round Reviews

“The combination of great characters and an outstanding plot makes this book a winner.”

Pop Cults


GEIST

“With its richly detailed world and wonderfully realized characters, Geist is one of the most vividly original books I’ve read this year.”

—Nalini Singh, New York Times bestselling author of

Heart of Obsidian

“Absorbing adventure that revels in both the creepy and the courageous.”

—Gail Carriger, New York Times bestselling author of

Etiquette & Espionage

“An incredibly rich story . . . Rich in high action, rich in mystery, rich in characters, rich in ghosts. Absolutely not to be missed.”

—Barb Hendee, national bestselling author of

The Mist-Torn Witches

“Part of the entertainment of this novel is putting the pieces together to get a picture of the complicated political situation, the period (they have magical airships!) and the nature of the geists . . . Plenty of magic-blasting action keeps things lively for a rousing start to this new series.”

Locus

“In the tradition of greats like Margaret Weis and Robin Hobb, Philippa Ballantine has woven an excellent tale of fantasy, paranormal, black powder, steampunk goodness.”

Pop Cults