Thursday, March 6, 2014

"Death Sworn"

Leah Cypess is the author of the acclaimed Mistwood and its companion, Nightspell. She lives with her family in Boston, Massachusetts.

Cypess applied the Page 69 Test to her new novel, Death Sworn, and reported the following:
Ileni, once the most promising sorceress of her people, has been sent to a caveful of assassins to tutor them in magic. She knows that the two previous magic tutors died under mysterious circumstances, and she knows that the assassins are ruled by an old man they call the master, whose every wish they obey. Page 69 comes in middle of the scene where Ileni is summoned to meet the master for the first time. She's been brought to him by a young assassin named Sorin, who has been assigned to protect her; and another assassin, named Jastim, has been summoned to the master's room too.

Here's page 69 (and one line from page 70.. you'll see why...):
"Please show the sorceress," the master of assassins said, "how completely my commands are obeyed in these caves."

Sorin stepped back, and Jastim moved across the room, straight toward Ileni. He was short, but ropy muscles twisted through his arms. His mouth was a thin, determined line, and his eyes were shining. With fear... no, pride. Or at least, mostly pride.

Panic gave Ileni strength to pull up a defensive spell. It wavered unevenly, a lack of finesse that would have been unthinkable for her a year ago, but it held.

He walked right past her, his face exultant, and vaulted onto the windowsill in a fluid movement. He poised there, crouched, his body taking up all the space in the square opening. He didn't have enough room to look back in at them, had he wanted to.

"Jump," the master said.

Jastim launched himself into the night.
Visit Leah Cypess's website.

--Marshal Zeringue