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Bryn has spent her whole life learning to kill fairies. Now it’s time to put those lessons to use.

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Swoon Index

  • Heat

    5 (9 ratings)

  • Tears

    4 (7 ratings)

  • Laughs

    5 (9 ratings)

  • Thrills

    6 (7 ratings)

Full Description

Bryn has always been a loner. Knowing the truth about the Fae will do that to you. For the past nine years, ever since a bunch of those evil Tinkerbells abducted her mother, cursed her father, and forced her family into hiding, Bryn has devoted herself to learning everything she can about killing fairies.

But when the Fae threaten to take her brothers, Bryn isn't going to be able to handle this on her own. Gwen, a kind-hearted water witch; Jasika, a schoolmate with her own grudge against the Fae; and Dom, a new foster kid pulled into her world, all offer to help. But trust is hard-won.

That trust is put to the test when Bryn uncovers a book of Fae magic that once belonged to her mother. With the Fae threat mounting every day, Bryn must choose between faith in her friends and power from a magic that could threaten her very humanity.


The court fae swiped at me with its clawed hand. Without thinking, I blocked with my scratched arm as I ripped one of my necklaces free—my trusty iron nail.

I thrust the nail up with everything I had. A jagged gash bloomed across its pale chest. It screeched as its skin sizzled into bulging, purple blisters. Good old iron.

I rolled onto my knees and tried to scramble away. Gotta get home. Beyond the iron gate. Beyond the protection of the old rowan trees inside the perimeter. Just a few meters away, I could make it!

The Fae threw itself on my legs, pinning me to the ground.

"Agh!" I cried out and turned, slashing at it with my nail. With a wet gurgle, it grabbed my hand. Crap! I tried to pull back, but the creature ripped the nail from between my fingers. Its skin hissed as it popped and blistered. With a snarl, it tossed the nail away and leaned forward, bringing its jagged teeth centimeters from my nose. Its fetid breath stank of rotten meat.

"I haaaave meeeessaaaage," it croaked, digging its claws into my shoulder. I bit back a scream as fire shot down my arm. The creature cocked its head to the side, dog like, and twitched its lip. "My queeeen—"

"Shadeling!" I shrieked, but the little imp was gone. Damn little coward!

"—waaaantsss what waaaaas withheeeeld—"

Well, this queen's just going to have to suck it up.

I ripped the silver ankh from around my neck and pressed it to the Fae's purple wound. It shrieked and jumped back, clearly expecting a blistering pain that wouldn't come. I scrambled out from underneath it and raced for the house. My heart threatened to burst out of my chest. My vision blurred at the edges. I just had to get inside the fence. Their kind couldn't pass it. I'd be safe if I could just get inside.

I jumped onto the iron grate and reached for the lowest hanging branch of the rowan tree. The second my fingers closed around it, my necklaces jerked back, tightening around my throat. The Fae howled with fury.

"What waaaaas withheeeeeeld!"



"McGuire’s debut novel beautifully combines fantasy and real-world conflict into one gripping story. With complex themes of sexuality, family, and responsibility, this tale will enrapture readers in its characters’ journeys." —Booklist

"A different type of faerie tale that will be enjoyable for readers who are interested in medieval magic." —School Library Journal

"I found myself having trouble setting this one down. ... Give it a shot for sure." —Jessica Belmont

"Damn, I was hooked right from the start of this book. ... The Welsh inspired fae fantasy that didn't glorify them, but showed them for the tricksters that they are. ... A fun ride." —Caidyn, Goodreads reviewer

“A stay-awake page turner—very good!” —Sashabethdri, Swoon Reader

“Thrilling with a splash of laughs in-between.” —Littleone82, Swoon Reader

“Bryn is a unique and relatable protagonist, and she isn’t afraid to speak her mind or stand up for herself.” —Kloe Brooks, Swoon Reader

“I wept when I finished this remarkable story.” —Miss Midnight, Swoon Reader