Cage of Deceit, Book One of the Reign of Secrets Series
Seventeen-year-old Allyssa appears to be the ideal princess of Emperion—she’s beautiful, elegant, and refined. She is the darling of the kingdom and, one day, will be the most powerful ruler in the world. But for her, life at court is like a suffocating cage. During the day, she manages to keep a smile on her face and play the part of the perfect princess. But at night, she sneaks out of the castle and roams the streets with a commoner who doesn’t know her true identity. She keeps tabs on the shady under dealings of the city and seeks out ways to help her people firsthand.
When a royal messenger arrives half dead, carrying news that an army from the northern front is amassing to destroy Emperion, Allyssa is forced to entertain an alliance with a handsome prince from a neighboring kingdom. She needs to marry him in order to secure his country’s help to fight their mutual enemy. Prince Odar turns out to be rather charming, well spoken, and cultivated. In other words, he represents everything she despises about court life. To make matters worse, the prince insists that Jarvik— his nosy squire—watch Allyssa’s every move, suffocating her even more. Jarvik is infuriating, bossy, and constantly looks down upon her.
When she sneaks out of the castle in disguise one evening, Allyssa comes face-to-face with an assassin who isn’t from this part of the world, an assassin who was sent to murder the royal family. Stuck in an impossible bind, she allows Jarvik to help her. Together, the unlikely pair confronts the man sent to kill her so she can discover who’s behind the lethal plot. Only, the more she learns, the more she understands that the invading army and the assassin are connected to an enemy she thought was long gone—an enemy with the power to destroy her family and the people of Emperion. The cage she so longs to break free from might just be the one thing she has to fight to keep intact. In order to save her kingdom, she has to sacrifice her freedom, her heart, and maybe even her life.