Promo for Of Light and Shadow by Tanaz Bhathena with a GIVEAWAY
Of Light and Shadow by Tanaz Bhathena
Publication date: May 23rd 2023 Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
When they don’t give us our birthright, we steal it.
Roshan Chaya is out for justice. Abandoned by her parents at birth and adopted by the kingdom of Jwala’s most notorious bandit before his brutal murder, she is now leader of the Shadow Clan, a gang of farmers-turned-bandits impoverished by the provincial governor’s atrocities and corruption. Roshan’s goal: to avenge her adoptive father and earn back rights and dignity for her people.
Prince Navin has always felt like an outcast. Second in line for the throne, he has never been close to his grandmother, Queen Bhairavi of Jwala. When a night out drinking with friends leads to his capture by the infamous Shadow Clan, Navin schemes to befriend Roshan and use her as a means to escape. His ploy, however, brings Navin closer to the corruption and poverty at the heart of Roshan’s province, raising questions about its governor and Navin’s own family.
To further complicate things, the closer Roshan and Navin get, the harder it becomes to fight their growing attraction. But how can they trust each other when the world as they know it starts to fall apart?
Set in a magical world inspired by the badlands of 17th century India, this standalone epic fantasy novel by Tanaz Bhathena is packed with political tensions, dangerous schemes, and swoon-worthy romance that asks the age old question: can love conquer all?
EXCERPT: She reached up to touch his face. Roshan’s whole
body glowed, her every nerve attuned to his, the sound of his blood pulsing in
her ears. Sweat beaded her forehead the way it always did when performing life
magic, especially when she needed to transfer some of her own energy to someone
The boy’s breathing quickened and he coughed
sharply, black lashes flickering open to reveal eyes the color of molten gold,
their pupils not round but elliptical like a cat’s.
Peri eyes, Roshan realized as they slowly
focused on her, taking in the turban that covered her hair and the mask that
shielded her face.
She had not seen a peri before except maybe in
old scrolls or paintings. Peri were supposed to have wings; they were among a
race of part-human and part-animal beings called the Pashu, who lived in the
kingdom of Aman, northwest of Jwala.
The spare prince had no wings. Nothing to
indicate his heritage except for those eerie gold eyes that made her want to
pull away from him and simultaneously draw closer.
“Speak,” she commanded.
“Are you sure about that, Roshni?”
Roshan started. Surely . . . surely,
he couldn’t know her name.
But he was still watching her, examining her
from covered face to glowing arms . . . and that’s when she
understood. He had called her Light in the Common Tongue, referring to
her illuminated form, completely unaware that he’d referred to her by a variant
of her real name.
“Or would you prefer I do something else for you
with this very gifted mouth of mine,” he went on, his voice like honey, sinuous
and smooth. “I hear the bandits of Ashvamaidan are rather . . . lonely . . .
most of the time.”
In the background, someone snorted. Roshan
suppressed the urge to roll her eyes. Normally she would have told the boy to
bite his tongue—or better yet, magically forced him to bite it himself. Yet, if
this boy was who she thought he was . . .
“Your name,” she ordered.
He raised a thin, perfectly arched eyebrow. “You
don’t know who I am?”
“I can guess. But I’d rather you tell me yourself,”
she replied, perfectly mimicking his arrogant tone.
“Well, then,” he murmured. “Let it be known that
I am Rajkumar Navin of Clan Behram, the first of his name and second in line to
Jwala’s throne.” As the prince spoke, his voice seemed to magnify in volume,
sending shivers up her skin. “I command you to unhand me now and take me back
to Prabha.” The words vibrated in her ears, hammered painfully under her skull.
A soul magus, she realized, as tendrils of his magic began curling
around her brain like a vise.
“I then command you to surrender to the
authori—” the prince’s voice cut off abruptly as Roshan’s hands locked around
Her grip wasn’t too tight—she did not
want to choke him by any means—but it was firm enough to silence. Sweat slid
between her breasts and heated her back, magic and anger burning her body with
a red light, until she turned it chilly and blue, her fingers numbing painfully
at the prince’s throat, freezing his voice until nothing emerged from his mouth
except for gasps.
“Sometimes, the best thing for a mouth to do is to
remain shut, Rajkumar.”
Tanaz Bhathena is an award-winning Zoroastrian author of contemporary and fantasy fiction. Her books include Of Light and Shadow, Hunted by the Sky which won the Ontario Library Association’s White Pine Award and the Bapsi Sidhwa Literary Prize, and The Beauty of the Moment which won the Nautilus Award for Young Adult Fiction. Her acclaimed debut, A Girl Like That, was named a Best Book of the Year by numerous outlets including The Globe and Mail, Seventeen, and The Times of India. Born in India and raised in Saudi Arabia and Canada, Tanaz lives in Mississauga, Ontario, with her family.