BookHounds has moved!



Book Description

February 5, 2013

The girl with no past, and no future, may be the only one who can save their lives.

Nisha was abandoned at the gates of the City of a Thousand Dolls when she was just a little girl. Now sixteen, she lives on the grounds of the isolated estate, where orphan girls apprentice as musicians, healers, courtesans, and, if the rumors are true, assassins. She makes her way as Matron's errand girl, her closest companions the mysterious cats that trail her shadow. Only when she begins a forbidden flirtation with the city's handsome young courier does she let herself imagine a life outside the walls. Until one by one, girls around her start to die.

Before she becomes the next victim, Nisha decides to uncover the secrets that surround the girls' deaths. But by getting involved, Nisha jeopardizes not only her own future in the City of a Thousand Dolls—but also her life.

About the Author
Miriam Forster wrote her first story at seven and has been playing with words ever since. She is obsessed with anthropology, British television, and stories of all kinds. Miriam lives in Idaho with her husband.



After the Empire has been devastated by a magical war that has killed those with magical powers and left their world in tatters, the Empire has institute a two child policy much like modern day China.  Nisha is left at the gate of a city that takes in unwanted daughters and she remembers her father leaving her there.  We follow Nisha through her daily life in the city and the intrigue that awaits her daily.  That intrigue is suddenly increased when the day of Redeeming approaches and two girls are murdered.  The day of Redeeming is the one day that the girls can free themselves from the school and essentially be purchased as wives or apprentices.

The story is told in painstaking detail, as we learn about the girls and the different houses or departments of the school.  The girls don't cross over into the different schools except for those that have special permission like Nisha.  As Nisha wonders about her family, she begins to get clues into her background as she tries to unravel the murder mystery.  The story really takes off the last third of the book when it became really exciting as Nisha did start to put the clues together to solve the crime.

I did enjoy this story but it was slow going for me.  I wish that the pace has been a bit quicker since the plot had a lot going for it.  Nisha was a great character and now that all of the world building is complete, I think there is room for another installment which could lead to a bit more excitement.  Parents:  There are a few kisses, some alluded to violence but nothing those over 13 wouldn't know about.


  1. I'm excited to read this book! I've heard many different things about it, but I just love the concept. Thanks for the great review!

  2. Thanks for the great review. I really enjoyed this book. I loved the world building, the mystery, and Nisha as a character.

  3. Slow-going makes me pause at jumping to read it. Thank you for the honesty though.


Thanks for leaving a note! I try to reply to all conversations!