Phoenix and Ashes
|Media type||Print (Hardcover & Paperback)|
|Preceded by||The Gates of Sleep|
|Followed by||The Wizard of London|
Phoenix and Ashes (2004) is a fantasy novel written by Mercedes Lackey, a well-known fantasy author. Based on the story of Cinderella, Phoenix and Ashes is a stand alone book, though it is usually grouped with her other Elementals books.
Phoenix and Ashes is about a girl named Eleanor Robinson and a pilot named Reginald Fenyx. Eleanor's mother died and her father remarried a woman named Alison, who already had two daughters. When her father was killed in the Great War, Alison showed her true nature as an Elemental Master of Earth who practiced the dark blood-fueled arts. Eleanor was bound to the hearth by a fearsome ritual and people forgot all about her.
Reginald Fenyx, an aristocrat and an Elemental Master of Air, loved to fly. During the Great War, he enlisted in the Royal Flying Corps, and became known as an air ace. However, he met another Elemental in combat and crashed; he was trapped under rubble for days while dark Earth creatures tormented him. This was particularly torturous because Air (Reginald's Element) is the opposite of Earth. When he was rescued, he was a traumatized and broken man who had abandoned magic.
The main plot of the book involves Alison's attempts to marry one of her daughters to Reginald and become nobility. Meanwhile, Eleanor's ability to use Fire magic awakens, with the tutelage of her godmother Sarah and strange beings who visit her in dreams and guide her to master her magic by use of Tarot Cards.
Reginald appears briefly in another novel in the series, The Serpent's Shadow, which is set a few years before he becomes a pilot in World War I/The Great War. At this time he is an Oxford student and Dr. Maya Witherspoon's future fiancee, Peter Scott, remarks that while Reginald is studying to be a lawyer, the boldness of his personality marked him as a future military man instead.
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