THE FIRE (2008) (sequel to The Eight) is launched thirty years after the events of The Eight, when the Black Queen shockingly resurfaces in Russia. The children of the previous characters know nothing of the quest of their parents, but are drawn into it nonetheless — and “The Game” is afoot again. In 1822: at the dawn of the war of Greek Independence, Haidee, daughter of the powerful ruler, Ali Pascha, smuggles the most valuable piece of the chess set out of Albania under the very noses of the attacking Turks. In 2003: former child chess prodigy, Alexandra Solarin, returns home to Washington DC at the dawn of the Iraq War, the exact moment of our entry into Baghdad, only to discover the connection between the “chessboard” of modern DC and the key to the ancient city of Baghdad: the very spot where, twelve hundred years earlier, the magical chess set of Charlemagne was created. The Fire reaped rave reviews, spending more than 6 months on bestseller lists around the world, including France, Spain, Holland, New York, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco, DC.
Katherine Neville’s groundbreaking novel, The Eight, dazzled audiences more than twenty years ago and set the literary stage for the epic thriller. A quest for a mystical chess service that once belonged to Charlemagne, it spans two centuries and three continents, and intertwines historic and modern plots, archaeological treasure hunts, esoteric riddles, and puzzles encrypted with clues from the ancient past. Now the electrifying global adventure continues, in Neville’s long anticipated sequel: The Fire.2003, Colorado: Alexandra Solarin is summoned home to her family’s ancestral Rocky Mountain hideaway for her mother’s birthday. Thirty years ago, her parents, Cat Velis and Alexander Solarin, believed that they had scattered the pieces of the Montglane Service around the world, burying with them the secrets of the power that comes with possessing it. But Alexandra arrives to find that her mother is missing and that a series of strategically placed clues, followed swiftly by the unexpected arrival of a mysterious assortment of house guests, indicates that something sinister is afoot.
When she inadvertently discovers from her aunt, the chess grandmaster Lily Rad, that the most powerful piece of Charlemagne’s service has suddenly resurfaced and the Game has begun again, Alexandra is swept into a journey that takes her from Colorado to the Russian wilderness and at last into the heart of her own hometown: Washington D.C.
1822, Albania: Thirty years after the French Revolution, when the chess service was unearthed, all of Europe hovers on the brink of the War of Greek Independence. Ali Pasha, the most powerful ruler in the Ottoman Empire, has angered the sultan and is about to be attacked by Turkish forces. Now he sends the only person he can rely upon–his young daughter, Haidee–on a dangerous mission to smuggle a valuable relic out of Albania, through the mountains and over the sea, to the hands of the one man who might be able to save it.
Haidee’s journey from Albania to Morocco to Rome to Greece, and into the very heart of the Game, will result in revelations about the powerful chess set and its history that will lead at last to the spot where the service was first created more than one thousand years before: Baghdad.
Blending exquisite prose and captivating history with nonstop suspense, Neville again weaves an unforgettable story of peril, action, and intrigue.