Flamecaster is the fifth book in the Seven Realms universe and the first book in a new series, the Shattered Realms, by New York Times bestselling author Cinda Williams Chima. It was released on April 5th, 2016 by Harper Collins.
20 years after the events of the previous series, King Montaigne's attempts to invade the Fells have failed. A stalemate incurred and an armistice was signed leading to a uneasy peace.
Adrian Sul'Han, better known as Ash, is the eldest child and only son of the Queen of the Fells. He has been sent to train as a healer in Arden but after an assassination attempt on his entire family he travels with one of his mothers royal guards to kill King Montaigne.
King Montaigne however did not orchestrate any assassination attempt and sends one of his agents of his secret police to track down the whereabouts of Adrian.
Elsewhere in Arden a young girl named Jenna Bandelow is also hunted by the kings men for the magemark on her neck. Capable of harnessing the power of fire, she joins a resistance movement in the north of Arden but is eventually captured and transported to the dungeons of King Montaigne's castle.
Ash, alone, enters the service of King Montaigne as a horse healer while his friend posses as a noble woman. After a few days a fire in the royal dungeons kills a handful of servants but Ash is able to heal the castle cook. King Montaigne, impressed, takes Ash as his personal healer. Ash plans to kill the king in his sleep but the Empress of the Northern Isles sends assassins who attempt to poison the king. Ash saves the Queen of Arden and in the resulting battle it is revealed he is the son of the Queen of the Fells. Ash is imprisoned and meets the younger Jenna. They begin a romance and earn the sympathy of the agent sent to capture Adrian. The king becomes more unstable and sends his potential rivals son into battle where he is killed. The Empress's emissaries, docked in the harbor, fake a coup and plan to use a dragon hatchling to destroy the palace.
Jenna however, has a psychological bond with the dragon and instead of going on a rampage it breaks into the dungeon and frees Jenna. Ash however is left behind and his friend appears and smuggles him out of the city. As the city guard slowly reclaim the palace from the mercenaries the king is pushed off a ledge and killed, although it remains unknown who actually killed him. His agent, still tasked with hunting down Adrian, decides to take a vacation and deserts his post. Ash and his friend ride up the North Road and although they wish to find Jenna, decide the best course of action is to return home.
- Adrian Sul'Han (18) - better known as Ash. He it the primary protagonist and an apprentice healer trained in Arden. Because of his mother's Queendom he has no claim to the throne and his younger sister Alyssa is the true heir.
- Jenna Bandelow (16) - a young girl from a mining town in northern Arden. She has a unique magemark on the back of her neck which allows her to control fire to an extent. She has a connection to dragons, capable of telepathically speaking to them. She is the love interest and Adrian and the deuteragonist.
- ... (20) - a royal guard of the Queen of the Fells secretly sent to protect her son Ash while he trains in Arden. Under an alias as a guard commander in King Montaigne's army, she keeps Ash safe and rescues him from an assassination attempt. Later she poses as a noble woman to gain entry into King Montaigne's feast and again rescues Ash.
- ... (22) - an agent of King Montaigne and a member of the secret police. He originally begins as an antagonist but later sympathizes with Ash and Jenna and deserts his post.