by Jordan Ifueko
In a fantasy set in a mythical African nation, young Tarisai, half-human and half-ehru (djinn), has been raised in isolation, trained by tutors preparing her to become one of the eleven members of Prince Ekundayo's council. She barely knows her distant mother, whom she calls The Lady. What she does know is that her mother, through magic, has compelled her to kill The Prince Tarisai is supposed to dedicate her life to serving. As she tries desperately to resist the magic, Tarisai also attempts to unravel her mother's background and the complicated history of their land, which includes grappling with the effects of imperialism and colonialism. Why does her mother want the prince dead? The question leads Tarisai to a discovery that will change her future and that of the empire. Ifeuko excels at world-building in her captivating first novel, creating a place so lush with sensory details readers will feel as though they have fully entered it. The complexity of the characters and their interdependency also serve to bring Tarisai's world to life, and readers will struggle, as she does, with moral choices, love, political alliances, and forbidden knowledge in order to find and fulfill her true destiny. (Age 12 and older)
CCBC Choices 2021. © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2021. Used with permission.
Named one of the best books of the year by People Magazine, Buzzfeed, New York Public Library, Chicago Public Library, Kirkus Reviews, School Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, and more!
"Dazzling... All hail Raybearer." --Entertainment Weekly
"One of the most exceptional YA fantasies of all time." --Buzzfeed
"Brilliantly conceived fantasy." --People
"An exquisitely detailed world." --PopSugar
Fans of Sabaa Tahir and Tomi Adeyemi won't want to miss this instant New York Times bestselling fantasy from breakout YA sensation Jordan Ifueko!
Nothing is more important than loyalty. But what if you've sworn to protect the one you were born to destroy?
Tarisai has always longed for the warmth of a family. She was raised in isolation by a mysterious, often absent mother known only as The Lady. The Lady sends her to the capital of the global empire of Aritsar to compete with other children to be chosen as one of the Crown Prince's Council of 11. If she’s picked, she'll be joined with the other Council members through the Ray, a bond deeper than blood. That closeness is irresistible to Tarisai, who has always wanted to belong somewhere. But The Lady has other ideas, including a magical wish that Tarisai is compelled to obey: Kill the Crown Prince once she gains his trust. Tarisai won't stand by and become someone’s pawn--but is she strong enough to choose a different path for herself? With extraordinary world-building and breathtaking prose, Raybearer is the story of loyalty, fate, and the lengths we're willing to go for the ones we love.
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.