I enjoyed Treason by Althea Claire Duffy. In a fantasy world full of intrigue and magic, the spy Elunet (currently masquerading as a housemaid) has been sent to uncover the secrets of House Mellas, rival of her House Corellis. Elunet is set to spy on Tavia, the daughter of the current Lord of the House, and see what she can discover about their business dealings with trade and nearby countries. Unforutnately for Elunet, Tavia is completely uninterested in politics and business. But Tavia does have an interest in transportation spells that could wreak havoc on trade and the other Houses. She also has more than a friendly interest in her maid…..luckily Elunet feels the same way.
There is so much unrealized potential in this story that it almost hurts. The world is fabulous – even with the very brief look we get in this novella, you get a feel for the intrigue and politics, and come on, our main heroine is a freakin’ spy! She’s pretty darn cool! And Tavia, our love interest, is lovely as well – she is pretty much your typical academic, not interested in much outside her studies. The two of them together work really well, which is surprising, again, with how short the story is. Sadly, I was still left wanting more – it was like we only got a peek, when it could have been a full-fledged novel. Instead it was all of 21,000 words. I’m hoping that this is actually going to be part of a series (though there are no hints of one I could find), not necessarily about Tavia and Elunet, but about the world the author created. I would definitely read more.