Eternal Sky (The Eternal Sky, The Lotus Kingdoms, and related works)
The Eternal Sky: An epic fantasy trilogy:
Temur, grandson of the Great Khan, is walking away from a battlefield where he was left for dead. All around lie the fallen armies of his cousin and his brother, who made war to rule the Khaganate. Temur is now the legitimate heir by blood to his grandfather’s throne, but he is not the strongest. Going into exile is the only way to survive the machinations of his ruthless uncle.
Once-Princess Samarkar is climbing the thousand steps of the Citadel of the Wizards of Tsarepheth. She was heir to the Rasan Empire until her father got a son on a new wife. Then she was sent to be the wife of a Prince in Song, but that marriage ended in battle and blood. Now she has renounced her worldly power to seek the magical power of the wizards.
These two will come together to stand against the hidden cult that has so carefully brought all the empires of the Celadon Highway to strife and civil war through guile and deceit and sorcerous power.
Range of Ghosts, Tor, March 2012
Shattered Pillars, Tor, March 2013
Read an excerpt (spoilers for Range of Ghosts)
Steles of the Sky, Tor, April 2014
Read an excerpt (Spoilers for both previous books)
Starred review: Publishers Weekly:
“The conclusion is both untelegraphed and completely appropriate. Bear’s trilogy makes a rich contribution to epic fantasy’s expanding borders of emotion and invention.”
Starred review: Kirkus:
“Considering the trilogy as a whole, the overused term justifiably applies.”
“The world of the Eternal Sky is a gorgeously fleshed-out one, and the characters without exception fascinating, sometimes maddening, and complex.”
The Lotus Kingdoms: An epic fantasy trilogy:
The Gage was an artist, once, and a lover. To avenge his murdered beloved, he allowed a sorcerer to sheathe his body in mirrored bronze. His vengeance is complete now; the sorcerer has long since perished. But the Gage endures.
The Dead Man has a purpose once as well: he was raised to be the protector of a Caliph. The Caliph died: the Dead Man did not.
Now the Dead Man and the Gage have become companions of the sword, itinerant mercenaries. They have come east and south, through the passes of the Steles of the Sky, bearing a message to the besieged young queen of one of the Lotus Kingdoms. There, they will discover magic, mystery, betrayal, love–and, perhaps, finally, a purpose.
The Stone in the Skull, Tor, forthcoming 2017
The Red-Stained Wings, Tor, forthcoming 2018
The Origin of Storms, Tor, forthcoming 2019
And companion novellas:
Dark magic is afoot in the City of Jackals…
Eighty years Bijou the Artificer has been a Wizard of Messaline, building her servants from precious scraps, living with the memory of a great love that betrayed her. She is ready to rest.
But now her former apprentice, Brazen the Enchanter, has brought her a speechless feral child poisoned by a sorcerous infection. Now, Messaline is swept by a mysterious plague. Now the seeping corpses of the dead stalk the streets.
Now, finally, Bijou’s old nemesis—Bijou’s old love—Kaulas the Necromancer is unleashing a reeking half-death on Bijou’s people. And only Bijou and her creatures wrought of bone and jewels can save the City of Jackals from his final revenge.
Bone and Jewel Creatures, Subterranean Press, March 2010
Book of Iron, Subterranean Press, September 2013
Bijou the Artificer is a Wizard of Messaline, the City of Jackals. She and her partner—and rival—Kaulas the Necromancer, along with the martial Prince Salih, comprise the Bey’s elite band of trouble-solving
But Messaline is built on the ruins of a still more ancient City of Jackals. So when two foreign Wizards and a bard from the mysterious western isles cross the desert in pursuit of a sorcerer intent on plundering the deadly artifacts of lost Erem, Bijou and her companions must join their hunt.
The quest will take them through strange passages, beneath the killing light of alien suns, with the price of failure the destruction of every land.
Eternal Sky short stories:
“Love Among the Talus” at Strange Horizons (free!)
“Abjure the Realm” at Coyote Wild (free!)
“The Ghost Makers,” in Fearsome Journeys: the New Solaris Book of Fantasy (Jonathan Strahan, ed.)
“Samarkar’s tale of the Three Genjia” at Dark Faerie Tales (free!)
Tor covers by Donato Giancola.
Subterranean press covers by Maurizio Manzieri.