Book 1 of the Kalima Chronicles
Kalima is colony world without mineable iron, locked in a peaceful feudal society by the lack of this vital resource. But things are about to change. When Alere Connor, failed xintou but skilled swordswoman, is sent to act as mistress to Jun First Radan Zah-Hill, the ruler of the land, she becomes the unwilling focus of a revolution. On his deathbed, Radan reveals the existence of an iron ore deposit, the location of which is known only to a very few. With several factions vying for political domination of the Jundom, control of the iron would tip the balance of power. Alere, accused of the Jun First's murder and fleeing for her life, must reach and warn the Jun Second, Rafi Koh-Lin, on whose lands the iron ore lies. If she fails, all out war is inevitable - the first ever war in the seven hundred year history of the Earth-colony.
On the way, Alere will uncover the old and bloody secret of her own existence, the reason for her failure as a xintou, and unlock and even darker future for herself and her companions.