Riding at the head of her army, Holy Matriarch of Mann plans to conquer the fortress city of Bar-Khos, whose walls have held the empire at bay for ten long years of siege. Ash is a man who would see her dead before that. The ailing Rōshun assassin is determined to seek vengeance for the Matriarch’s previous crimes. But such a course of retribution goes against everything his life has taught him.
Meanwhile, Ché, a trained killer of the state, watches as the Mannian army slaughters their way across the remnants of the free world, and questions whether he believes the doctrines he has been trained to follow.
With the battle for the Free Ports intensifying, more lives are drawn into the bloody conflict: Bahn, the siege-shocked soldier; and Curl, a young woman determined to make a stand even if it costs her life. When the two armies clash all looks set to be decided. But sheer force alone will not be enough to win this war. Only the gruelling determination of one man seeking redemption may be enough to sway the final outcome . . .
Praise for STANDS A SHADOW
‘One of the most refreshing new fantasies out there’
‘Packed with action, adventure and incident … a cleverly plotted story’
‘Engaging and addictive . . . one of the best novels I’ve read this year’