Fall 2018 Kids Indie Next List
“Three young women, each with her own deadly secret, discover that one of them will ascend to the throne of their dying father. Each soon discovers that her secret will be used against her, and together they urgently work to discover their blackmailer before they can be executed as traitors to the Kingdom. Treachery and black magic intermix with sisterly loyalty and ill-fated romance. Your heart will race as quickly as your fingers turning the pages of this smart and captivating debut.”
— Nancy Baenen, Arcadia Books, Spring Green, WI
Three Dark Crowns meets Pretty Little Liars in this sensational and striking new fantasy from debut author Ellen Goodlett.
Three girls. Three deadly secrets. Only one can wear the crown.
The king is dying, his heir has just been murdered, and rebellion brews in the east. But the kingdom of Kolonya and the outer Reaches has one last option before it descends into leaderless chaos.
Or rather, three unexpected options.
Zofi has spent her entire life trekking through the outer Reaches with her band of Travelers. She would do anything to protect the band, her family. But no one can ever find out how far she's already gone.
Akeylah was raised in the Eastern Reach, surrounded by whispers of rebellion and abused by her father. Desperate to escape, she makes a decision that threatens the whole kingdom.
Ren grew up in Kolonya, serving as a lady's maid and scheming her way out of the servants' chambers. But one such plot could get her hung for treason if anyone ever discovers what she's done.
When the king summons the girls, they arrive expecting arrest or even execution. Instead they learn the truth: they are his illegitimate daughters, and one must become his new heir. But someone in Kolonya knows their secrets, and that someone will stop at nothing to keep the sisters from their destiny... to rule.
Magic, mystery, and blackmail abound in the first book of this sensational and striking fantasy duology.
About the Author
Ellen Goodlett is the author of several science fiction short stories, a comic book collaborator, and young adult novelist. A former New Yorker, she is currently traveling the world with 79 other digital nomads, living in a different country every month. Traveling provides a lot of inspiration for her fantasy worlds.
"Rule delivers dazzling magic, suspenseful court intrigue, and pulse-pounding surprises. A treat for fans of richly layered fantasy!"—Elly Blake, New York Times bestselling author of The Frostblood Saga
"Goodlett treats readers to juicy gossip, court intrigue, and danger. [Her] worldbuilding is detailed and politically astute...providing a satisfying build toward a cliffhanger ending."—Publishers Weekly
"Goodlett weaves an absorbing narrative of political intrigue, friendship, and romance...the cliffhanger conclusion will leave readers desperate for the next volume."—BCCB
"An epic fantasy adventure...[with] death threats, political intrigue, and just the right amount of romance. A great purchase for libraries with strong readers and fantasy lovers."—SLJ
"At its heart this is a mystery story, one that keeps doling out clues that steadily ratchets up the tension...a good choice for teens who enjoy stories about royal mystery and intrigue."—SLC
"Rule is an exhilarating, fresh fantasy full of complicated and authentic female characters navigating court politics, blackmail, forbidden romance, and their own dark pasts. With breakneck pacing and a toe-curlingly good queer romance, Rule is sure to satisfy."—Lindsay Smith, author of Sekret and Web of Frost
"Rule is a such a propulsive, richly imagined, and sexy debut that you'll be reading 'just one more page' way past your bedtime."—Corrie Wang, author of The Takedown
"The fast-paced plot makes for an engaging read... Refreshing."—Kirkus Reviews