The citizens of Ludania are strictly divided by class and the language they speak. If you look someone of a higher class in the eye while speaking their class language is an offense punishable by death. For seventeen-year-old Charlaina “Charlie” Hart, a member of the merchant class, she has spent her entire life hiding a secret that if known, will cause her death. She has the ability to understand all languages, even those she has never heard before. Working in her family’s restaurant one night, a political family comes in and sits at one of her tables. The daughter is the same girl who makes fun of Charlie on her way to school in the merchant’s language. She doesn’t realize Charlie can understand her until Charlie slips up while taking their order. A ruckus ensues in the restaurant as Charlie’s friend Brooklynn and the three gentlemen she is serving look on. The girl is calmed down and her parents apologize. Charlie goes to the kitchen to collect her wits and steel herself for her father’s disapproval.
Charlie soon finds her thoughts straying to Max even though she shouldn’t and he seems close to uncovering her secret. She is torn be her physical and emotional attraction to him but can’t seem to get past the mystery surrounding him. But when tensions rise and the threats of an invasion become imminent, Charlie is forced to put not only her life, but that of her mute younger sister into Max’s hands.
Why is Charlie blessed/cursed with the ability to understand not only languages but the inflections of voices as well? Why has her sister never spoken and what secret ability does she hide as well? What secret is Max hiding and why? And will Queen Sabara find a suitable heir before it’s too late?
Join Charlie on her harrowing adventure in Kimberly Derting’s new trilogy. I for one cannot wait to see what else she has in store for Charlie.
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