works oneself the bone

The Bone Doll's Twin

The Bone Doll's Twin is the title of the first book in author Lynn Flewelling's series of fictional works, Tamír Triad. It is followed by Hidden Warrior and then, lastly by Oracle's Queen.

Plot summary

In order for Skala to live in peace and prosperity, a Queen must sit on the throne.

The Bone Doll's Twin begins with an unusual and intriguing premise: in order to fulfill a prophecy and protect the rightful female heir to the throne of Skala, two wizards - Iya and Arkoniel her apprentice, with the aid of an outlawed witch, attend a royal birthing of twins, born to the sister Ariani of a king who has usurped what, by the God's wishes, is a matriarchal throne, in the process eliminating every possible female contender to his reign, even secretly murdering his own female kin.

The twins born to his sister Ariani are a boy and a girl, and to protect as well as disguise the new princess, Iya and Arkoniel would assist the witch Lhel in killing the son at birth, then cast a spell that binds the newborn princess' physical appearance to that of her dead brother, a bodily glamour achieved by the stitching of switched skin that causes the sister to assimilate the brother's body, and vice versa. But there is one thing - the brother has to be killed before he draws his first breath - so that his soul would not enter his body. However, the plan goes all wrong. When the King comes to visit his sister, Lhel is startled from her concentration. The brother's soul is accidentally allowed to enter his body, and the mother, who is not a party to the plot, hears the cry of her infant son just before he is smothered to death. While the physical switch of identities works to deceive the king, the infants' mother is, on some level, aware of the deception and the unnatural death of her son, an awareness that will lead into madness and a hostility towards her surviving child. Worse, the vengeful spirit of the murdered sibling will come to haunt not only the perpetrators of the crime, but in particular his unknowing sister, who, as she matures, remains totally unaware of her true gender and identity, knowing herself as the boy (Prince) Tobin. And, conflicts begin to emerge between the kingdom of Skala and an ancient foe, intrigues simmer at court, and a looming struggle begins to emerge between mages who support the new rule of the king and those who wish a return to the older reign of queens.

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