So you are tired of the standard fantasy novel and want something different? Try Kar Kalim by Deborah Christian. It is very different from the norm. The book is full of rich descriptions, interesting magics and a different plot.
Inya is a powerful sorceress living in the tower of Moontooth. She is the guardian of the gates to other worlds in her tower. Mistress of great powers, Inya is arrogant, aloof and overconfident. She greets visitors by wearing masks, awing them with her mystique.
One day, a young man comes to her tower to be an apprentice. He angers Inya with his binding spell upon her. She agrees to train him in order to use him to get a legendary crystal of power. They become lovers, but Inya is uncomfortable with Amrey's powers. He goes on her quest, but brings back a fake crystal. She seals the portal door behind him after he flees.
Years later, the gate is shattered open. A man comes through with his followers. He captures Inya, making her a prisoner in her own tower. Kar Kalim, conqueror of worlds, begins his bloody conquest of Draakmil..
The book has a lot to say about the darker side of human nature and power. This book has some very descriptive scenes of violence. I recommend it for those looking for something different in fantasy. My major qualm is the characters. Neither Inya or Kar Kalim are people you can sympathsize with very easily. Both are arrogant creatures of power. Be patient though and you will be rewarded.
This book was published several years ago. It’s out of print, but used copies are available.