Hi! I’m Melissa Caruso, author of THE TETHERED MAGE, first in the Swords and Fire trilogy, forthcoming from Orbit Books in October 2017.


Cover design credit: Lisa Marie Pompillo. Cover art credit: Crystal Ben & Arcangel.

Praise for The Tethered Mage

“The Tethered Mage is a riveting read, with delicious intrigue, captivating characters, and a brilliant magic system. I loved it from start to finish!” — Sarah Beth Durst, author of The Queen of Blood

“Intricate and enticing as silk brocade. Caruso’s heroine is a strong, intelligent young woman in a beguiling, beautifully evoked Renaissance world of high politics, courtly intrigue, love and loyalty – and fire warlocks.” — Anna Smith Spark, author of The Court of Broken Knives

“With a rich world, political intrigue, and action that keeps you turning pages, The Tethered Mage is classic fantasy with a fresh voice.” — Jeff Wheeler, author of The Queen’s Poisoner

“An enchanting voice and an original world you won’t want to leave.” — RJ Barker, author of Age of Assassins

“Engaging and entertaining with intrigue, a good pace, and strong characters. Zaira and Amalia are bright, bold heroes in a smartly constructed world.” — James Islington, author of The Shadow of What Was Lost

The Tethered Mage


In the Raverran Empire, magic is scarce and those born with power are strictly controlled—taken as children and conscripted into the Falcon Army. Zaira has lived her life on the streets to avoid this fate, hiding her mage-mark and thieving to survive. But hers is a rare and dangerous magic, one that threatens the entire empire.

Lady Amalia Cornaro was never meant to be a Falconer. Heiress and scholar, she was born into a treacherous world of political machinations. But fate has bound the heir and the mage.

And as war looms on the horizon, a single spark could turn their city into a pyre.