From critically acclaimed historical fantasy author, Stephanie Dray comes the long-awaited new tale based on the true story of Cleopatra’s daughter.

years of abuse as the emperor’s captive in Rome, Cleopatra Selene has
found a safe harbor. No longer the pitiful orphaned daughter of the
despised Egyptian Whore, the twenty year old is now the most powerful
queen in the empire, ruling over the kingdom of Mauretania—an exotic
land of enchanting possibility where she intends to revive her dynasty.
With her husband, King Juba II and the magic of Isis that is her
birthright, Selene brings prosperity and peace to a kingdom thirsty for
both. But when Augustus Caesar jealously demands that Selene’s children
be given over to him to be fostered in Rome, she’s drawn back into the
web of imperial plots and intrigues that she vowed to leave behind.
Determined and resourceful, Selene must shield her loved ones from the
emperor’s wrath, all while vying with ruthless rivals like King Herod.
Can she find a way to overcome the threat to her marriage, her kingdom,
her family, and her faith? Or will she be the last of her line?
Read the Reviews
stirring story of a proud, beautiful, intelligent woman whom a 21st
century reader can empathize with. Dray’s crisp, lush prose brings
Selene and her world to life.” ~RT Book Reviews
“The boldest, and most brilliant story arc Dray has penned…” ~Modge Podge Reviews
“If you love historical fiction and magical realism, these books are for you.” ~A Bookish Affair
Read an Excerpt
me, six black Egyptian cobras dance on their tails, swaying. I watch
their scaled hoods spread wide like the uraeus on the crown of Egypt.
Even from this height, I’m paralyzed by the sight of the asps, their
forked tongues flickering out between deadly fangs. I don’t notice that
I’m gripping the balustrade until my knuckles have gone white, all my
effort concentrated upon not swooning and falling to my death.
I would swoon if I were not so filled with rage. 
Someone has arranged
for this. Someone who knows what haunts me. Someone who wants to send me
a message and make this occasion a moment of dread. My husband, the
king must know it, for he calls down, “That’s enough. We’ve seen enough
of the snake charmer!”
is commotion below, some upset at having displeased us. Then Chryssa
hisses, “Who could think it a good idea to honor the daughter of
Cleopatra by coaxing asps from baskets of figs?”
story the world tells of my mother’s suicide is that she cheated the
emperor of his conquest by plunging her hand into a basket where a
venomous serpent lay in wait. A legend only, some say, for the serpent
was never found. But I was there. I brought her that basket. She was the
one bitten but the poison lingers in my blood to this day. I can still
remember the scent of figs in my nostrils, lush and sweet. The dark god
Anubis was embroidered into the woven reeds of the basket, the weight of
death heavy in my arms. I can still see my mother reach her hand into
that basket, surrendering her life so that her children might go on
without her. And I have gone on without her.
I have survived too much to be terrorized by the emperor’s agents or whoever else is responsible for this.
it is a message, a warning from my enemies, I have already allowed them
too much of a victory by showing any reaction at all. So I adopt as
serene a mask as possible. My daughter blinks her big blue eyes, seeing
past my facade. “Are you frightened, Mother? They cannot bite us from
there. The snakes are very far away.”
I get my legs under me, bitterness on my tongue. 
“Oh, but they’re never far enough away.”
Available now in print and e-book!

DRAY is a bestselling, multi-published, award-winning author of
historical women’s fiction and fantasy set in the ancient world. Her
critically acclaimed historical series about Cleopatra’s daughter has
been translated into more than six different languages, was nominated
for a RITA Award and won the Golden Leaf. Her focus on Ptolemaic Egypt
and Augustan Age Rome has given her a unique perspective on the
consequences of Egypt’s ancient clash with Rome, both in terms of the
still-extant tensions between East and West as well as the worldwide
decline of female-oriented religion. Before she wrote novels, Stephanie
was a lawyer, a game designer, and a teacher. Now she uses the
transformative power of magic realism to illuminate the stories of women
in history and inspire the young women of today. She remains fascinated
by all things Roman or Egyptian and has-to the consternation of her
devoted husband-collected a house full of cats and ancient artifacts.