the Author

Cast in Ruin: Chapter one

Posted in Cast, download, Elantra, Luna.

It’s the end of July, and as promised, here’s Cast in Ruin, Chapter One, which Amazon lists as a 20 September 2011 release. It’s an October title; it’s sold to stores as an October title, and the date of publi­ca­tion that I always refer­ence on my pages is the publi­ca­tion month for which the book is sold to stores. With paper books it is impos­sible to have an exact date without compli­cated legal embargos (i.e. of the type used for Harry Potter books and no one else); the Amazon date is prob­ably truer to the time at which the book will start to arrive in phys­ical book­stores (and there­fore Amazon’s phys­ical warehouse).

It is also listed on the Elantra page in the sidebar, but I thought I would try to save people a few clicks and a page load by linking it from this post as well. Yes, it’s taken me several books worth of first chap­ters to think of this, but, ummm, I plead author-brain.

The UPS man deliv­ered the mass market paper­backs of both Cast in Fury and Cast in Silence yesterday (where, true to form, I tripped over them on the way in from work, and bounced around the front hall with Stubbed Toe. The books, however, were unharmed). Cast in Fury was orig­i­nally published with a glossy cover in trade paper­back; the mass market has a matte finish, but with the title, my name, and the tag-line on the back cover in full gloss. I really like the way it looks. It is, other­wise, the same book.


55 Responses to Cast in Ruin: Chapter one

  1. Cynthia Steele says:


    So sorry to hear about the stubbed toe and I hope it heals very quickly! I’m thrilled to hear these books are in paper­back and I believe I saw them in Kindle format when I was searching out your books the other day! I have long been a fan of The West books as I see people calling them here all the time, but I am new to the Cast books and thus far have really enjoyed them also! Thank you for contin­uing to bring great stories to us, I so appre­ciate the work you do to make that happen!

  2. Thank you :D

    All of the Luna titles are in ebook formats, and they have been almost since the begin­ning. The West books (and I think they’re called that because Essalieyan is more of a mouthful) will be hitting the ebook chan­nels in a month or so.

    As more people begin to use ereaders, I’ve gotten more mail about the West novels, so I’m happy that they’ll finally be avail­able for ereaders as well.

  3. Kathy says:

    Strictly a comment on Cast in Ruin… SOLD!

  4. technomom says:

    I knew I shouldn’t read that first chapter, but I couldn’t resist. Of course, now I absolutely cannot wait for the rest of the book! October can’t get here fast enough!

  5. Michael says:


  6. I knew I shouldn’t read that first chapter, but I couldn’t resist. Of course, now I absolutely cannot wait for the rest of the book! October can’t get here fast enough!

    a) Thank you! :D

    b) this is why I person­ally never read preview chap­ters — I can’t stand waiting, and the thing that should natu­rally imme­di­ately follow chapter one is…chapter two >.<

  7. Thank you so much for sharing the chapter here!! I can’t wait to read the whole thing soon.ヾ(*´∀‘*)ノ happy dance♪
    I think I’ll reread the whole series again in antic­i­pa­tion of this book.

  8. Estara says:

    Oooh, lovely. And you’re picking up right were you left off, I’m looking forward to that.
    Angela James just finished reading the book and gave it 4 stars (as she did the others), so I’m fairly confi­dent it’ll be a five star read for me ^^.

  9. Estara says:

    Hah! I just did that in June — I still have to write up my impres­sions though — it was my first full reread, previ­ously I’d only reread the previous book.

  10. Wrayth Lethe says:

    @ b) Haha­ha­ha­haha. yup. totally agree with you there! but i just cant resist it XD

    Also can’t wait for October. I adore this series. :)

  11. Genna Warner says:

    I had to read it and now I can’t wait for the full book. It was either read it and pull my hair out waiting for the end of September or pull my hair out because I want to read it. So either way Im bald until September. :)

    I’m in the middle of rereading the House Wars books but I may put those aside and do a full reread of The Cast series now.

  12. Dear Michelle,
    Another Elantra novel! Whee! I love the complex narra­tives of the books, and the heroine. I keep wishing good things to happen to her char­acter, but along with the lessons with the dragons(and woe betide her if she’s late) and her work duties, she’s got her hands full – !
    I’m sorry you stubbed your toe. I myself have had Doggie Bruises(playing with a six month old German-Shep­herd mix puppy does that…) and am pooped being a doggie mom. He wears me out. ! I love him and our cats, anyway.
    I hope with all my heart it’s cool where you are. We’ve been roasting here – even out toma­toes have been ‘cooking’(getting rotten as they ripen, alas) on the vine, much to my sister’s frus­tra­tion. I am actu­ally glad it’s over­cast today. Maybe it’ll rain enough to cool us off!
    Please take care and have a great week!

  13. fyreink says:

    Thank you so much for the chapter! I can’t wait until September. I have a ques­tion, in the second para­graph it says there were four dragons, but weren’t there five dragons on Elani Street?

  14. @fyreink: there were five >.<. This, btw, is one of those horrible OMG moments in which the author is looking at the timing and dates in slowly dawning terror.

  15. fyreink says:

    Ouch. May I ask what timing and dates you are refer­ring to? (bit afraid of the answer)

  16. Ouch. May I ask what timing and dates you are refer­ring to? (bit afraid of the answer)

    Yes. When the last stage of proofing — page proofs — goes to the publisher, you are in theory done. There is nothing you can change. I missed this because I know, on some visceral level, that the four Dragon Lords travel outside of the palace. The Arkon doesn’t. Is he outside? Well, yes. Four is the number of the Dragon Court — The Arkon and the Emperor, while part of the Court, reside in a different place in the mansions of my mind (which are in need of strong struc­tural repair, obvi­ously). I am one of three people who missed it.

    But — date-wise — if there’s any chance that the manu­script is not yet in print-produc­tion, there’s a chance to have a revi­sion made — but it is small, meant for cata­strophic emer­gen­cies (of the: you will get sued for this variety) and at this point, it is zero.

    If a mass market of the book is released in future, this can be corrected; if later print­ings are done it can (possibly) be corrected; but it can’t be changed before it’s published and in the wild.

  17. Aaron says:

    Which begs the ques­tion that relates to an older comment of mine:

    Is this some­thing that would/could be fixed, silently speaking, in the e‑book version?

  18. fyreink says:

    This really does suck :( The ARC appeared on netgalley a two weeks ago or so, so I thought that there may still be a chance to change it.

    On a side note I forgot to ask if the title is Cast in Ruin or Cast in Ruins. It’s not that impor­tant but the cover image on NetGalley says it’s Ruins.


  19. Amy says:

    Well…my excite­ment just reached new levels of nuclear propor­tions after reading the first chapter >.< I wish I had a time machine to fast forward to the release date!

  20. Since it would be fixed silently in a paper­book, I would imagine, yes. I don’t have access to the produc­tion of either version, so it wouldn’t be fixed by me.

  21. The title is Cast in Ruin without the termi­nating S.

    HOWEVER, the first proof image sent out had the termi­nating S; it was corrected, which is why the cover I have on the web-site has no ‘S’. I have sent plain­tive email to my editor — but I would not take a bet on the title that does appear on the printed book at this point >.<.

  22. fyreink says:

    Kaylin might take you up on that bet, though.

  23. ElizabethN says:

    I shouldn’t have read it but I did. October seems even farther away now. Of course I’ll be thinking that about the next Cast book release date the minute I finish Cast in Ruin.

    I foresee haunting of this site & the yahoo group for sight­ings of paper­back Cast in Ruin, so that I can find it early and not have to wait for the ebook (which I’ll buy in order to have the whole series on the reader).

  24. Hilda says:

    I left town for the weekend to see my grandaughter and came back to a Sagara gift. Amazing!! Love it. Now, I only have to wait until September to see Kaylin’s next step. I went back to Chaos to check on the 3 dragons in Elani.. It’s hard to tell becuse the story itself says there were 3 dragons yards from Evanston’s window. When the Arkon and Sana­balis came out of the shop, they were in human form.
    It wasn’t until the outcast dragon roared that they took dragon form and Tiamaris flew away. Your answer, however, maybe address an old concern of mine. To hold an empire there has been only 4 dragon, plus the Arkon and the emperor. The rest “reside in a different place in the mansions of my mind” . Hope­fully, we may see those mansions and dragons in a future book. I like them.

  25. Heather says:

    I can’t wait for the release! Do you plan to have a Cast story dealing mainly with Aerians? If so I hope it will be soon.

    Thank you for the wonderful stories!

  26. MaryW says:

    I knew I should wait to read this but having kept Cast in Chaos avail­able for quick rereads I just could not deny my self the plea­sure. Thanks!

  27. Kyra says:

    I’ve spent every August 1st for the past few years going to the book­store and zooming straight for the latest Cast book like a starving veloci­raptor (only time I ever leave with just one book, because hunting for more of them inter­feres with reading this one); I’m glad to have at least the first chapter this time around.

    Like everyone else, I can’t wait; I love how you’ve written the first meeting with Diarmat — his repu­ta­tion precedes him, and I was wrig­gling with this sort of giddy antic­i­pa­tion that often accom­pa­nies reading encoun­ters with this sort of strict and powerful quasi-antag­o­nist. Lovely feeling. There’s nothing quite like the emotional ride of reading a well-written story for the first time, when every situ­a­tion and emotion is glorious and new.

    I’m now trying to figure out which way to bet, on whether Kaylin will erupt after the last sentence.

  28. Kat says:

    I will be savoring the antic­i­pa­tion until I can read the book. I think I might just preorder it …B&N has a nasty habit of never having the books I want when I want them.

  29. w-b says:

    I wanted to cry. The end of the chapter was just wrong and wrong and wrong. I knew I shouldn’t have read the teaser cause I have just barely been not going crazy while waiting. Now I will offi­cially go off to my corner to go crazy. *sigh*

  30. DeDe says:

    Arghh…You win…again. :-) I did manage to hold out for 5 entire days before reading it though.

  31. Michelle says:

    I keep checking Amazon to see if/when Cast in Ruin will be avail­able on Kindle. The print edition has been listed for pre-order for a few months, but Kindle edition is still not listed. Is Luna plan­ning on releasing it in Kindle format the way they have with all the other books?

  32. Is Luna plan­ning on releasing it in Kindle format the way they have with all the other books?

    I can’t imagine that they won’t — but you’re the second person to mention this. I have email out to my editor to ask what’s happening with the Kindle version, but I don’t have any answers at the moment >.<

  33. And: Yes, they intend to offer the book as an ebook, as they’ve done for all the other Cast novels. My editor thinks all that needs to be done is press a button at this point, as the infor­ma­tion is good to go — but it obvi­ously has to be the right person pushing the button — i.e. the one with publisher account access.

    So hope­fully that will go live some­time soon — appar­ently none of the October titles have been set up for pre-order yet.

  34. I’ve spent every August 1st for the past few years going to the book­store and zooming straight for the latest Cast book like a starving veloci­raptor (only time I ever leave with just one book, because hunting for more of them inter­feres with reading this one); I’m glad to have at least the first chapter this time around.

    Thank you! I admit that there are authors I hunt for in the exact same way — except when I get into a book­store, I rarely get out with just one book >.<.

  35. Once walked into Cody’s in Berkeley with two empty army duffle bags — filled them. They were kind enough to open a second register for me. Someone not knowing what was afoot stood behind me just in time to see the total on the cash register. I’m pretty sure his first words were ‘Oh my god what did you buy?’ To be kind we told him that there was more than one book involved :)

  36. Theresa says:

    I can’t wait until the book is released.

    As a side note about the Kindle version…they do “pre-sales” of the books. City Of Night was a pre-sale and then on the release date it was auto­mat­i­cally deliv­ered to the Kindle (at mid-night I think). I wonder if your publisher could do that. I would love to be able to whip out my Kindle at 4 am when I am attempting to rock the kiddo back to sleep.

  37. Liza says:

    I was doing fine until the last sentence. Curious, amused, and appre­cia­tive of Kaylin’s dawning real­iza­tion of how much her life has been…observed. Then BANG.
    The last sentence.

    I have never been good at delaying grat­i­fi­ca­tion. I suppose one day I’ll learn.

  38. In my own defense — not that I am actu­ally feeling hugely defen­sive, but just possibly a tad guilty — when I ended Chapter One, the assump­tion on my part was the person reading it would imme­di­ately flip to Chapter Two…

  39. fyreink says:

    I am currently rereading Cast in Fury, and I have a small ques­tion. Who was the dragon that escorted Ybelline when she came to the Leon­tine caste court? Kaylin said that she didn’t recog­nize the face.

  40. natasha says:

    Dear Michelle,
    Will you be putting a second chapter up later this month or september? After all this is the first time that Chron­i­cles of Elantra have not been released in August and sense chapter 1 is such a cliffhanger.

  41. Genna Warner says:

    I just hit Amazon to see if they listed the eBook of Ruin yet. Well the good news is that they show the cover art with out the “S” on Ruin. The bad news is the that Luna still hasn’t listed it for order as an eBook. :(

  42. Jacob says:

    Feel free to satisfy that request, I’m pretty sure that not many people here would hate if Chapter 2 just happened to be leaked along with Chapter 1 :)

  43. natasha says:

    Dear Michelle,
    Will you be putting a second chapter up later this month or september? After all this is the first time that Chron­i­cles of Elantra have not been released in August and sense chapter 1 is such a cliffhanger.

  44. fyreink says:

    I just checked Amazon this morning, Cast in Ruin is avail­able on the Kindle for pre-

  45. fyreink says:

    However, when I put my mouse on the words “Kindle Edition” it says that it will be released October 1st.

  46. @natasha: I wasn’t ignoring your first post, but prob­ably should have replied with “I am seri­ously thinking about it but have not yet decided”. I was consid­ering it before hand, because it does end in a bad place :)

  47. @fyreink: I have to check when I get back home (I’m on lunch @ store, but I think it was Emmerian (which I’m prob­ably spelling wrong >.<).

  48. Jane says:

    If there is ANYTHING that could possibly be posted that might convince you to put up chapter 2 please consider it (thought, begged, pleaded, grov­eled for) and said. :-)


  49. fyreink says:

    Thanks. Will we be learning more about Lord Emmerian in future books? I assume Diarmat will be taking center stage in Cast in Peril, but it would be nice to learn about the other members of the Dragon Court. :)

  50. w-b says:

    If you can put up another chapter of the new cast book without causing your­self to much trouble contract wise I would like to add a 2nd or is it third? vote for that LOL it would appease the Michelle/Caste addic­tion I have going.

  51. Danita says:

    I was just thinking that very thing. I’d love another chapter as long as it is okay/not too much trouble. The end of #1 has so many possi­bil­i­ties. I’ve already done my pre-pub reread of the Cast series early this year. Still trying to get used to the next book being in fall. Respect­fully, Danita

  52. Aripyanfar says:

    When I read the first couple of “Cast In” books, I thought them fun but light­weight. It took me a while to realise that since I kept going back to reread the series, that there was actu­ally some­thing more meaty going on. As a Lit major, I’m a bit fussy about the books I REALLY admire.
    There were four elements that fooled me into thinking these were light­weight books. Firstly, the language was easy-breezy, straight forward English. Secondly, I found the action fast paced. The plots moved onwards quickly and inex­orably, as in any action-adven­ture. Thirdly, there were lots of funny little inter­ludes. Fourthly the use of magic mirrors that acted both like tele­phones and computers, and the centring of the story around a city police force, made Elantra very acces­sible and “familiar” as a location.
    However I kept returning to Kaylin Neya and her compa­triots. I started noticing that despite the simplicity of the English, I really had to pay atten­tion to pin down what was going on. And the psychology and social science of Kaylin’s stories weren’t simple at all. I loved that Kaylin starts off as a flawed char­acter (making her very approach­ably human and believ­ably young) with a trau­matic past. She’s got a heart of gold, but is (rightly) bitter, angry, naive, self-involved and prone to the sort of impul­sive behav­iour (gambling, money spending) that unhappy people cannot resist.. Most of her plot­lines involve her being forced into a mystical journey of the soul, or a self-confronta­tion, forcing her into personal growth, and a better under­standing of the nature of other people and popu­la­tions in her life. Meaty and satis­fying liter­a­ture indeed.
    So too, I really appre­ciate the unique imag­i­na­tion Michelle Sagara has taken in building a fantasy city popu­lated with fantasy races. It is a brave coup that the Empire is ruled by a dragon rather than a human. It’s not some­thing I’ve ever read before, and I suspect most authors are too uncon­sciously human-centric to think of the ploy, and carry it out. The Dragon Emperor really dug out an uncon­scious prej­u­dice of my own.
    I love the arro­gant, vicious, dangerous, nasty, beau­tiful Barrani as an Elvan analogue. Danger is exciting — when not *too* dangerous — and the Barrani certainly spice up Elantra. It’s nice to have an author reit­erate that beauty of form doesn’t neces­sarily mean beauty of personal char­acter, and there­fore vice versa. Some of the best story­telling comes when an author is prepared to be merci­lessly cruel to her char­ac­ters, and the tragedy of the secret truth of the High Halls and the fate of the Barrani that fail their test of Name is a deeply compelling and moving story.
    The Tha’alani are a very well thought out answer to the hypo­thet­ical: “What if people really *could* read minds. It takes intel­li­gence to know that a mind-reader is not going to just be a normal human with a specific personal talent. The Aerians are a delightful deco­ra­tive item in the city. The Leon­tines are a refreshing addi­tion to the usual fantasy cast of humans, elves, dwarves etc.
    Finally it is deli­cious that so many secret forests and gardens inhabit this urban city of Elantra. All these magic build­ings forcing unex­pect­edly *inward* phys­ical jour­neys to find coun­try­side, castles, and adven­ture, instead of heroes traipsing off on outward jour­neys beyond cities and towns to find wilder­ness, castles and adven­ture. Even if these magic jour­neys aren’t clear metaphors for personal inward jour­neys, then they are at least another inter­esting concept by Sagara that is not often played out in contem­po­rary fantasy..

  53. Queen says:

    I’m sure people have asked you this ques­tion before, but is there any chance of Kaylin having a love life? Most of her rela­tion­ships seem very platonic at this point…i loved the sneak peek by the way :D

  54. LizM says:

    Any chance we can get the first chapter of Cast in Peril? If you’re afraid of spoiling things for people who haven’t read Cast in Ruin, you can start an email list of people who want the first chapter of Cast in Peril. I think this was mentioned in an earlier blog post?

  55. Aelynn says:

    I know this is prob­ably not the place for a rant, but… I’m not sure why, but Amazon​.co​.uk has little or no stock of the more recent Cast In books and only the first three books are avail­able on Kindle. People are saying it’s avail­able on the US website, but as Amazon tracks my Kindle region wher­ever I log in, I can’t even ‑see- it. All very frus­trating…! I thought ebooks would put an end to the silly publishing restric­tions, but I guess I’ll have to resign myself to buying an imported US paper­back again.

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