2017’s An Alchemy of Masques and Mirrors is the first volume in Curtis Craddock’s secondary world dynastic fantasy, The Risen Kingdoms.
Princess Isabelle des Zephyrs’ deformed hand should have earned her a quiet death at birth; she should have been smothered or perhaps discarded over the edge of the floating island that is her homeland. Spared by a quick-thinking bystander, Isabelle proves completely innocent of the Sanguinaire blood-magic that signifies descent from a saint, descent that forms the basis of the aristocracy’s lofty status in l’Empire Céleste. She is therefore a social pariah and completely useless to her ambitious father. He leaves her care to Jean-Claude, the fatherly musketeer who helped save her.
This should have been the end of her story … but fate had other plans for Isabelle.