A young heroine and her goshawk companion face wizards and gods in the first of a trilogy: “I thoroughly enjoyed Path of Fate” (Kristen Britain).
Orphaned by her mother and passed from family to family in the village of Kallas in the land of Kodu Riik, Reisil feels as if she will never truly belong. But her training as a tark, or healer, offers her the promise of acceptance by the townsfolk, and as her talents emerge, it appears she will finally be able to hold her head high.
But fate has another path in store: A goshawk named Saljane swoops into her life, and Reisil discovers that she is able to communicate telepathically with the animal. This is an undeniable sign that Reisil has been chosen by Lady Amiya, the goddess of Kodu Riik, to become an ahalad-kaaslane—a guardian of the land who must live a life of constant travel and forgo the very bonds of family and community the girl healer so desires.
Though the role of ahalad-kaaslane is a noble one, Reisil cannot bear the thought of losing the ties with society she has worked so hard to form. She rejects the Lady’s appointment, ignoring the goshawk no matter how persistently it follows her. But when a kidnapping plot breaks a treaty with the neighboring country of Patverseme, Reisil realizes the sentient bird of prey is the only creature capable of tracking the traitors down and saving Kodu Riik from the evils of war. Reluctantly, Reisil accepts her destiny as an ahalad-kaaslane, and embarks on a dangerous pursuit of the kidnappers—and a perilous trek of self-discovery—in order to save two kingdoms.
A feminist fantasy of honor and perseverance that features a special soul-to-soul bond with a blessed animal, Path of Fate was nominated for the Mary Roberts Rinehart Award.