by Katherine Hetzel
For ages 9 and up
Publication date: May 2017
Temple novice Katia wants nothing more than to become a priest in the Temple of the Triple Gods. She tries hard to do the right thing, but she’s on her last chance to convince Elder Sevanya, the King’s Priest, that she can do the job. While she’s belatedly setting up the incense to prove she’s a competent acolyte, Katia overhears the king’s brother plotting to kill the king. She steals the Kingstone to protect it and to deliver it to the true heir with a message: the killer is after him too.
Not knowing who to trust, Katia keeps her mission secret. Her theft of the precious stone puts a price on her head and she disguises herself as a boy to undertake the dangerous journey across sea and land to the true heir’s palace. Doing the right thing just got a lot harder. Will the Triple Gods forgive her?
Why we signed Kingstone . . .
“We love YA fantasy! Good female protagonist caught in an adult web of deceit and murder. Plucky novice pretending to be a boy to bring the Kingstone to the rightful heir. Good writing, clever twist at the end.”
From the Author . . .
We have all, I’m sure, found ourselves in situations where we might have had to tell a little white lie, or do something we’re not entirely happy about, to keep the status quo. I wanted to play with that idea, see what happened when a character was forced into doing something totally wrong according to what they believed, in order to make things right.
A lot of the story relies on the faith system in Katia’s world. I used a lot of what I believe in my own faith to give Katia her views on how she can best serve the triple gods and the temple she so longs to be a part of—though first and foremost this is an adventure story, not a commentary on faith!
About the Author . . .
Katherine Hetzel has always loved the written word, but only started writing “properly” after giving up her job as a pharmaceutical microbiologist to be a stay-at-home mum. The silly songs and daft poems she wrote for her children grew into longer stories. A member of the on-line writing community The Word Cloud, Katherine operates under the name of Squidge and blogs at Squidge’s Scribbles. She lives in the heart of the UK with Mr Squidge and two teenaged children.