The powerful city-state of Saraykeht is a bastion of peace and culture, a major center of commerce and trade. Its economy depends on the power of the captive spirit, Seedless, an andat bound to the poet-sorcerer Heshai for life. Enter the Galts, a juggernaut of an empire committed to laying waste to all lands with their ferocious army. Saraykeht, though, has always been too strong for the Galts to attack, but now they see an opportunity. If they can dispose of Heshai, Seedless's bonded poet-sorcerer, Seedless will perish and the entire city will fall. With secret forces inside the city, the Galts prepare to enact their terrible plan.
In the middle is Otah, a simple laborer with a complex past. Recruited to act as a bodyguard for his girlfriend's boss at a secret meeting, he inadvertently learns of the Galtish plot. Otah finds himself as the sole hope of Saraykeht, either he stops the Galts, or the whole city and everyone in it perishes forever.
""A Shadow in Summer is a thoroughly engrossing debut novel from a major new fantasist. A poignant human tale of power, heartbreak, and betrayal."" --George R.R. Martin
""A Shadow in Summer is one of the most elegant and engaging fantasies I've read in years, based on an intriguing, original premise. I eagerly await the remaining volumes in Daniel Abraham's the Long Price Quartet."" --Jacqueline Carey
""From the opening lines, A Shadow in Summer carries us into an exotic, fantastic, yet utterly convincing world. Bravo! I look forward to the next book in the series."" --Morgan Llywelyn
""Reader, be warned: If you open Daniel Abraham's A Shadow in Summer, he will lead you into a strange, seductive world of beatings and poets and betrayals, intrigues you do not fully understand and wars you cannot stop and places you are not sure you want to go. Intricate, elegant, and almost hypnotically told, this tale of gods held captive will hold you captive, too."" --Connie Willis, Hugo Award-winning author of To Say Nothing of the Dog
""In a world of bloated fantasy clones, Abraham's voice is fresh and startlingly new; not only is his worldbuilding original, but the characters who inhabit the universe he's created are both strange and fully human"" --S. M. Sterling on A Shadow in Summer
""In addition to the creation of an architecturally-perfect fantasy world filled with a fascinating, highly distinctive set of characters, Daniel Abraham has introduced into fantasy one brilliant, stunning new idea, a magic system in which the Word is made Flesh."" --Walter Jon Williams on A Shadow in Summer