Brightly Shines the Darkness, the first book in the Skywatchers series, starts with a tragedy. At a particularly auspicious time, the Sunservers have invited the Moonfollowers to hold their Priests’ Gathering beside the sun-circle, to usher in an era of cooperation and peace between the two religions. But foreign sunserving fanatics invade the ceremony, and imprison and then slaughter the moon-priests.
Many of the dead came from small, rural communities, which must adapt to the new order with little experience of wider political events to guide them. Brightly Shines the Darkness is set in one such village, where incompletely-trained apprentices take over the priests’ mantle, considering it their duty to care for the villagers and communicate with the spirits on their behalf. Their inexperience and their preoccupation with all the other aspects of their work make them poor judges of how to protect their people, and they are unaware of just how closely danger threatens their community.
Above all, Brightly Shines the Darkness is about ordinary people, caught up in extraordinary events; about men and women who are doing their best, but who are ill-equipped to face the forces that are rising against them.
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