If there were two more impetuous and carefree men in the Kingdom of the Isles, they had yet to be found. Twins Borric and Erland wore that mantle proudly, much to the chagrin of their father, Prince Arutha of Krondor. But their blissful youth has come to an end. Their uncle, the King, has produced no male children. Bypassing himself, Arutha names Borric, the eldest twin by seconds, the Royal Heir. As his brother, Erland will have his own great responsibilities to shoulder. To drive home their future roles, Arutha sends them as ambassadors to Kesh, the most feared nation in the world. Borric and Erland will be presented to the Queen of Kesh - the single most powerful ruler in the known world - at her Seventy-fifth Jubilee Anniversary.
But they have not even left Krondor when an assassination attempt on Borric is thwarted. Aware that he is being provoked into war, Arutha does not rise to the bait. His sons' journey will not be deterred, for nothing less than peace is riding on it. Yet there is to be no peace for the young princes. When their traveling party is ambushed, Borric disappears and is presumed dead - sending Erland into spirals of rage and grief as he is forced to navigate alone the court intrigues at Kesh. But unbeknownst to anyone, Borric lives and has escaped his captors. In a strange land, with a price on his head, Borric must use all his wits and stamina to find his way back to his brother.
On separate paths, the two men - one a fugitive and one a future king - make their journey toward maturity, honor, and duty. For every step they take could sway the fragile peace of the land, as those who crave war rally against them - and become ever more daring.
From Publishers Weekly: This welcome continuation of The Riftwar Saga picks up 20 years after A Darkness of Sethanon leaves off. In part a coming-of-age story, it tells of Borric and Erland, twin sons of the Prince of Krondor. Carelessly lighthearted, they soon learn the need for responsibility in times of danger. Borric, the elder, named heir to the throne of the Kingdom of the Isles, is sent with his brother in place of their father to the Jubilee of the empress of Kesh, a powerful neighbor. An attempt on Borric's life forces the party to follow a secret route. During a raider attack, Borric is seized as a slave and thought dead, leaving Erland as heir. While the royal entourage continues its trip, Borric escapes - but keeps his identity secret. Meanwhile, Erland has been introduced to the splendors of the palace of the world's most powerful ruler, and to the much looser sexual mores of the Keshians. He also begins to enjoy a position of prestige and influence. Several deaths occur before the plot against both countries can be unraveled in Feist's lively tale, where a solid backdrop and engaging characters inhabit a well-rounded fantasy land.
`A lively tale where engaging characters inhabit a well-rounded fantasy land.` ~ Publishers Weekly
`Has humor and tears and romance... just about everything a fantasy fan could ask for... This is a book to read whether or not you have read the earlier trilogy.` ~ UPI