The Bruising of Qilwa Book

The Bruising of Qilwa Book

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In this intricate debut fantasy introducing a queernormative Persian-inspired world, a nonbinary refugee practitioner of blood magic discovers a strange disease that causes political rifts in their new homeland.

Persian-American author Naseem Jamnia has crafted a gripping narrative with a moving, nuanced exploration of immigration, gender, healing, and family. Powerful and fascinating, The Bruising of Qilwa is the newest arrival in the era of fantasy classics such as the Broken Earth Trilogy, The Four Profound Weaves, and Who Fears Death.

Firuz-e Jafari is fortunate enough to have immigrated to the Free Democratic City-State of Qilwa, fleeing the slaughter of other traditional Sassanian blood magic practitioners in their homeland. Despite the status of refugees in their new home, Firuz has a good job at a free healing clinic in Qilwa, working with Kofi, a kindly new employer, and mentoring Afsoneh, a troubled orphan refugee with powerful magic.

But Firuz and Kofi have discovered a terrible new disease which leaves mysterious bruises on its victims. The illness is spreading quickly through Qilwa, and there are dangerous accusations of ineptly performed blood magic. In order to survive, Firuz must break a deadly cycle of prejudice, untangle sociopolitical constraints, and find a fresh start for their both their blood and found family.

"I loved this gorgeous book about blood magic, chosen family and refugees in a hostile city. Naseem Jamnia has created a rich, complex world in a very short space, and I am so into it. I've read a lot of books lately about empires and rulers and warfare, and it's so refreshing to read a book that's about healers. People in this book are trans, nonbinary, asexual and aromantic, and it's never a big deal but does matter to their characters, which I just adore."
Charlie Jane Anders, author of 
All the Birds in the Sky

"With prose that reads like lush poetry, The Bruising of Qilwa builds an intricate world full of history, magic, and life."
Z. R. Ellor, author of 
Silk Fire

"A stunning fantasy novel that confronts questions of belonging: to a culture, to a family, and to yourself . . . Jamnia's queer-normative world is a welcome break from fantasy trends and tropes: people introduce themselves with pronouns without fanfare, and homophobia and transphobia as forms of oppression do not factor in. Cracking the door to a fresh fantasy world, The Bruising of Qilwa makes an unforgettable first impression."

"I adored this city, with its vibrant history and super-fresh magic system, but I loved these astonishing complex vivid characters even more. A fun and fast-paced ride that keeps you guessing all the way (and, yeah, it's tough to grapple with the ugly legacies of empire and oppression and still have fun, but Jamnia pulls it off)."
Sam J. Miller, author of 
Boys, Beasts and Men


Author Naseem Jamnia
Format Paperback
Pages 176
ISBN 9781616963781


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