Nisha was abandoned at the gates of the City of a Thousand Dolls when she was just a little girl. Now 16, she lives on the grounds of the isolated estate, where orphan girls apprentice as musicians, healers, courtesans and, if the rumors are true, assassins. Read more...
Nisha was abandoned at the gates of the City of a Thousand Dolls when she was just a little girl. Now 16, she lives on the grounds of the isolated estate, where orphan girls apprentice as musicians, healers, courtesans and, if the rumors are true, assassins. She makes her way as Matron's errand girl, her closest companions the mysterious cats that trail her shadow. Only when she begins a forbidden flirtation with the city's handsome young courier does she let herself imagine a life outside the walls. Until one by one, girls around her start to die. Before she becomes the next victim, Nisha decides to uncover the secrets that surround the girls' deaths. But by getting involved, Nisha jeopardizes not only her own future in the City of a Thousand Dolls --- but also her life.
An exotic treat set in an entirely original, fantastical world brimming with deadly mystery, forbidden romance, and heart-stopping adventure.
- ISBN-13: 9780062121301
- ISBN-10: 0062121308
- Publisher: Harper Teen
- Publish Date: February 2013
- Page Count: 359
- Reading Level: Ages 13-UP
- Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.85 x 1.24 inches
- Shipping Weight: 0.95 pounds
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2012-12-17
- Reviewer: Staff
Forster makes a strong debut with a fresh South Asian–inspired fantasy/mystery crossover. Abandoned as a child, 16-year-old Nisha Arvi has grown up within the private walled estate known as the City of a Thousand Dolls. There, orphaned or unwanted girls are raised in six specialized houses to be wives, courtesans, artists, entertainers, healers, or soldiers. As Matron’s assistant, Nisha isn’t part of any House, but she dreams of being Redeemed from the city by a handsome young man. Just as her wish seems within reach, the deaths of several girls make Nisha a valuable pawn, now destined to be sold as a slave. With time running out, Nisha tries to find out what happened to the girls, uncovering her own lost past along the way. Set in a magically isolated Empire with a strict caste system, a two-child limit, and telepathic cats, Forster’s well-crafted story and confident prose are rich, packed with small details that immerse readers in her sumptuously imagined world. The ending has a touch of deus ex machina, but readers will gladly follow Forster into a presumed sequel. Ages 13–up. Agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Agency. (Feb.)