BATTLE is the fifth novel in The House War, the series that began with The Hidden City, City of Night, House Name and Skirmish. Set in the same rich fantasy universe as Michelle West’s Sacred Hunt duology and her six-book Sun Sword series, the House War novels recount the events leading to the momentous final confrontation between the demonic minions of the Lord of the Hells and the defenders of the Essalieyan Empire – a realm with a long and bloody history. The Empire is ruled by the Twin Kings, themselves sons of gods. It is also controlled by The Ten, the heads of the most influential Houses in Averalaan, the capital of the Empire.
But The House War focuses not only on this larger conflict but also on the struggle to become the leader of the most important of the Houses – House Terafin.
As Battle opens, Jewel Markess ATerafin has at last become The Terafin, ruler of the House. But Jewel is far from secure in her new position. There have been multiple assassination attempts, at least several of which were demonic in origin. Jewel has survived them all, thanks mainly to her seer-born abilities.
In fighting to protect herself, her House, and the Empire, Jewel has drawn upon powers she doesn’t understand and can barely control, transforming the very structure of both the Terafin manse and the palace of the Twin Kings. In so doing, she has generated fear and mistrust among allies and enemies alike.
Before Jewel has time to assess the changes and defend her actions, she finds herself facing a deadly new foe, a demon lord of the highest ranking who is bent on her destruction, and will not be stopped by anything in his path, whether god-born, mage-born or armed warriors.
Even Jewel’s otherworldly companions – from the winged cats, Shadow, Night and Snow, to the Arianni Lord Celleriant and the Winter King, to her House Mage, Meralonne APhaniel – cannot defeat the demon. Only in the heart of her own domain can Jewel call upon forces to hold the enemy at bay.
And this is but the first challenge Jewel must face as she readies for the opening battle in a war that can only be survived if she follows the one path she does not wish to take. For only if she follows her destiny can she hope to master the power she is meant to wield and make her city into a fortress to stand against the marshaled armies of the Lord of the Hells…