A gifted tailor in disguise. Three legendary dresses.
The competition of a lifetime.
On the fringes of the Great Spice Road, Maia Tamarin works as a seamstress in her father's shop. She dreams of becoming the best tailor in the land, but as a girl, the best she can hope for is to marry well.
When a royal messenger summons her ailing father, once a tailor of renown, to court, Maia poses as his son and travels to the Summer Palace in his place. She knows her life is forfeit if her secret is discovered, but she’ll take that risk to save her family and achieve her dream of becoming the imperial tailor. There's just one catch: Maia is one of twelve tailors vying for the job.
Backstabbing and lies run rampant as the tailors compete in challenges to prove their artistry and skill. Maia's task is further complicated when she draws the unwelcome attention of the court enchanter, Edan, whose piercing eyes seem to see straight through her disguise.
And nothing could have prepared her for the final challenge: to sew three magic gowns for the emperor's reluctant bride-to-be: from the laughter of the sun, the tears of the moon, and the blood of stars. With this impossible task before her, she embarks on a journey to the far reaches of the kingdom, seeking the sun, the moon, and the stars, and finding more than she ever could have imagined.
Out now from Knopf Books for Young Readers
Praise for SPIN THE DAWN
"A fabulous fantasy...sure to delight even the most jaded of fantasy readers." ~NPR
"Your next big YA series...We've got our eye on this stylist blockbuster." ~Entertainment Weekly
"Elizabeth Lim's "Spin the Dawn" weaves a stunning tapestry of adventure." ~Washington Post
"How much like telling a tale is the making of an item of clothing. The tailor spins and weaves, stitches and folds, cuts and ornaments, and the result is pure magic. So too does the writer, and Elizabeth Lim’s inaugural and— I imagine— breakthrough novel, SPIN THE DAWN, is also magic. Romance, artistry, and deep enchantment."
~Gregory Maguire, NYTimes bestselling author of Wicked
“What an amazing creation! Every time I thought I knew where it was going, I was wrong. This is a white-knuckle read!”
~Tamora Pierce, #1 NYTimes bestselling author of Tempests and Slaughter
“Part epic adventure, part fairy tale, and part Project Runway, SPIN THE DAWN is a thrilling tale as rich as velvet and as exquisite as fine embroidery.”
~Heidi Heilig, author of The Girl from Everywhere
"As stunning as a gown made from the blood of stars, this rich tapestry of a novel will leave you spellbound. The vivid prose and Maia’s fierce, passionate courage are sure to capture your heart."
~Joanna Ruth Meyer, author of Echo North
"Lim weaves an enchanting narrative, with all the magic of a fairytale and the guts and grit of an epic adventure. Diverse folklore, imaginative worldbuilding and a brilliant lead character who wields creativity as skillfully as a weapon - this is a gem for all lovers of whimsical fantasy!"
~Natasha Ngan, NYTimes bestselling author of Girls of Paper and Fire
"Beautifully written with a can’t-wait-for-the-sequel ending, this breathtaking and
fast-paced Silk-road inspired fantasy from the author of Mulan-retelling Reflection (2018) is sure to enchant readers beginning to end."
"An addictive magical adventure that's a strong purchase for library shelves."
~School Library Journal
"With strong storytelling and characterization and a pleasing romance, this will have broad appeal."