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       A new adventure begins:                                    

Publication date: 6 September 2018 by NOSY CROW BOOKS

ISBN 9780857636409

A powerful new fantasy series from Ellen Renner, prize-winning author of Tribute and Castle of Shadows.

“First in a gripping fantasy quartet… epic world building.”

– Fiona Noble, The Bookseller

TRIBUTE series



Zara lives in a world divided by magic. A small minority of magic users – mages – rule non-magic commoners as feudal overlords.

Technology and literacy are forbidden, and each commoner must give up their first-born child to the mages and lifelong enslavement as servants and soldiers - these are the Tribute children.

An enormous wall and centuries of warfare divide the mage world from that of the Makers, who rebelled against oppression and exterminated all the magic-users in their land long ago.

Six years previously - on the night her Tribute child Swift was killed for reading a book - nine-year old Zara was shocked into a realisation of the evils of a society built upon the misery of others. Now sixteen, Zara is a spy in her father's palazzo. She works for the Knowledge Seekers, commoners plotting the annihilation of their mage overlords.

One day a young Maker is brought to the palazzo as a hostage. Aidan is a pawn in the deadly war between the mages and Makers.

Overwhelmed by pity and surprised by first love, Zara promises to help Aidan escape and return to his own people. But before she can keep her promise, her secret is discovered.

Hunted by her own, Zara seeks refuge with the Knowledge Seekers. But when you can kill with a thought, can you ever be trusted?

One girl's dream of a just world becomes a personal quest which threatens to destroy her - and all she holds dear -  in this breathtaking tale of pain, romance, defiance and revenge.

​The Castle of Shadows Series


Gorgeously exciting and well written, with a hero as strong-minded and quick witted as its heroine, Renner's acute sense of psychology, politics and pace makes this one to revel in ... Not to be missed!

The London Times


British author Renner kicks off a new series with smart writing that combines mystery, historical fantasy and a touch of steampunk.

Kirkus Review


It has a dramatic plot, like a cross between Oliver Twist and Black Hearts in Battersea, and Renner is a real discovery.

Amanda Craig, London Times

Compelling characters and cracking good writing make this developing series a real treat.

Times Best Books of 2010


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