Heir of Lies (Black Dawn #1) by Mallory McCartney
Publication Date: April 21, 2020
“Hope was a dangerous thing. It could consume every dream and make them take flight, becoming wild daydreams in one’s heart and mind. Or hope could incinerate everything you thought you knew, burning you down to your core, leaving you raw and exposed for the world.”
Emory Fae has only known one thing—life at The Academy, a school for those who have special abilities. Following in her parents’ footsteps, the pressure to uphold their dream falls on her and one of her best friends—Adair Stratton. An outcast and feared by most, Adair longs to break away from the expectations dictating his future. With whispers of dark magic spreading across Kiero, Adair starts to doubt The Academy is all it seems.
An unexpected visit ignites new tensions as the roguish king from across the Black Sea, Tadeas Maher of the Shattered Isles, and his heir, Marquis Maher, sail to Kiero. Notorious for their pirating and wrath, for the first time in years, they demand the Faes listen to their proposition for a new treaty. Caught in the middle of politics, Adair and Emory, with the help of their best friends Brokk and Memphis, search for the one thing that matters the most—the truth.
Their world is tipped upside down as unlikely alliances are made, and war ravages Kiero. Through the throes of betrayal, lies, hidden magic, and love, Adair is faced with a life changing decision. Will he fight or bow to the darkness within?
But, Adair’s decision will change the course of Kiero forever, setting in motion irreversible destinies for everyone at The Academy as Emory Fae rises as heir.
Heir of Lies is the first book in the bestselling Black Dawn series.
Mallory McCartney currently lives in Sarnia, Ontario with her husband and their three dachshunds Link, Lola and Leonard. When she isn’t working on her next novel or reading, she can be found day dreaming about fantasy worlds and hiking. Other favorite pastimes involve reorganizing perpetually overflowing bookshelves and seeking out new coffee and dessert shops.
They came to him in his dreams. Their beckoning voices were soft and comforting, and Adair groggily smiled, looking around him. Nothing was clear in his dreamscape; the colors and shapes all blurred into a giant grey mass. Stuffing his hands into his pockets, he shrugged his shoulders. Stepping forward, the ground rippled, like he had dropped a stone into the water. Green hues shimmered below his feet, crisp and sharp against the grey backdrop. Taking another step, the world shifted, exploding before him. The smell of damp grass overcame him, and looking around, he was in another forest, one he didn’t recognize. The trees here were oversized, the leaves a deep purple, creating the illusion that he was in the heart of a gem. “Adair.” The hair on the back of his neck stood on end, as the soft voice changed into something he recognized. Turning slowly, the creature was behind him, her head tilted, like a predator watching its prey before it pounced. She stalked up to him, slowly, the leaves turning to scorched earth with each footfall. He couldn’t move. He just watched, his heart lodged in his throat as she came face-to-face with him, her pale hand resting gently over his heart. Those pitiless eyes pulled him in until he wasn’t sure he was breathing at all. Leaning in, her sharpened teeth clicked lazily as she whispered, “You are so close. You can’t falter now.” “Close to what?” His voice was a whisper on his exhale. She pressed her hand harder on his chest. “To freedom.” Adair stared in horror as black flames erupted from her fingertips. They twisted up and down her arm until they erupted, consuming him. It was like having his head shoved underwater. He flailed and writhed trying to escape her grasp, but he couldn’t break free. He watched as the inky flames, twisting all around him, kissed and caressed his skin. Starting to sink into his pores, turning his veins black. Choking him, deafening him. He felt liquid burst from his tear ducts, black tears streaming down his face. His screams echoed through the forest as the she giggled, lowering her sharpened teeth to his throat, making him submit to her will, her dark desires. He clawed at her, but the fire just raged, crawling into his mouth, his eyes, his nose. Suffocating him as he was turned to ash beneath her hold. *** His screams tore from him, jarring him back to reality. Sweat clung to his skin, making his clothes sticky beneath his jacket. The tinges of dawn bled into the sky, making the forest around them seem innocent as the shadows were chased away. Scrambling back, he clutched his heart, ripping at his clothes, tearing them so he could see, could check, that it had been just a dream. The cool air made his skin prickle when his chest was exposed. His skin was starkly pale with no trace of inky lines. Sighing, he held his head in his hands, trying to shake the nightmare.