Kushiel's Dart

Kushiel's Dart

eBook - 2002
Average Rating:
Rate this:
The land of Terre d'Ange is a place of unsurpassing beauty and grace. It is said that angels found the land and saw it was good ... and the ensuing race that rose from the seed of angels and men live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt. Phedre no Delaunay is a young woman who was born with a scarlet mote in her left eye. Sold into indentured servitude as a child, her bond is purchased by Anafiel Delaunay, a nobleman with a very special mission ... and the first one to recognize who and what she is: one pricked by Kushiel's Dart, chosen to forever experience pain and pleasure as one. Phedre is trained equally in the courtly arts and the talents of the bedchamber, but, above all, the ability to observe, remember, and analyze. Almost as talented a spy as she is courtesan, Phedre stumbles upon a plot that threatens the very foundation of her homeland. Treachery sets her on her path; love and honor goad her further. And in the doing, it will take her to the edge of despair ... and beyond. Hateful friend, loving enemy, beloved assassin; they can all wear the same glittering mask in this world, and Phedre will get but one chance to save all that she hold dear. Set in a world of cunning poets, deadly courtiers, heroic traitors, and a truly Machiavellian villainess, this is a novel of grandeur, lusuriance, sacrifice, betrayal, and deeply laid conspiracies.
Publisher: New York, NY : Tor, [2002, 2001]
Edition: First mass-market edition
Copyright Date: ©2001
ISBN: 9781429910903
Branch Call Number: Overdrive eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource (xvi, 912 pages) : map


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Mar 05, 2017

This is one of those reads that is best read and digested slowly. It is long (600+) pages, with lots of details and a large cast of characters. There is a wealth of background things going on in the first half of the book and not much action until the second half. I found the background on this fantasy world fascinating, but it could easily seem like overkill to other readers. What kept me going and what made me love it was the ever present political intrigue and the well-developed characters. Phedre is probably one of my favorite protagonists ever with her intuition and compassion. This would be a great choice for those experiencing Game of Thrones withdrawals or looking for a new epic fantasy series to sink into.

Jan 17, 2017

A little bit front-loaded with world-building, and definitely not for every reader due to the explicit and sometimes violent sex scenes, Kushiel's Dart nevertheless remains a favourite with its potent mix of sex and politics, and cast of intriguing characters.
Full review: https://shayshortt.com/2017/01/17/kushiels-dart/

Nov 23, 2016

The world of this book is rich and expansive. Carey's vivid and well thought out descriptions leave you with the feeling that you have been dropped into a vibrant, living world that existed before you knew about it and will continue to live on after you leave it. You can't ask more when it comes to world building. The characters are intriguing, diverse and fully formed. The main character, Phedre, is someone you root for. She is clever and strong and fights for what she wants and that is refreshing.
The story is unique and dark, not for the feint of heart!
The book is quite long and can at times be at bit slow but you are rewarded for your perseverance with a beautiful love story, a plot driven by expansive political intrigue and a very unique alt-history/fantasy setting that blends history and mythology.
It is the first of a series so if you find you don't want to leave Terre d'Ange behind when you are done with Kushiel's Dart, you don't have to just yet!

Nov 18, 2016

This remains one of my favourite books in Carey's Kushiel series. Phedre is an engaging heroine, and her role as an anguisette adds a definite spice to the books. Carey deftly manages to keep Phedre's sexual proclivities from being a mere tease, however, turning them into an asset that helps save her beloved country in unexpected ways. We feel that we know Phedre, and (what's more) that we like her. She is loving and courageous and honest, someone we wouldn't mind having as a friend...even if we refused to follow her on her adventures, knowing full well that we might not survive.

Although I am not as fond of the three Naamah books at the end of this series, I highly recommend all the "Kushiel's..." novels. They are an engrossing combination of history and fantasy, with characters that you can't help rooting for, sitting on the edge of your seat to see if they will make it through.

multcolib_rossb Apr 17, 2016

This is not a book that I will soon forget. There is lots of sex, lots of politics and intrigue, and lots of feels, but I think the most memorable thing about the story is how the main character is both submissive and also utterly unstoppable. I really liked it.

Kereesa Dec 19, 2015

This is an ugly cover, but a fabulous book. If you're in GoT withdrawals, definitely give this a shot. It's hard to get into, heaven knows it took me a full reread before falling in love, but it's definitely worth it.

Uyc Aug 31, 2015

I thorougly enjoyed the complexity that this author has shewn through her characters and environment. It keeps you on your feet throughout the story as you follow Phèdre's journey. Never a dull moment.

sorenkrane Feb 12, 2015

Fantastic and complex world building. This makes for a difficult world to dive into, the mythos and belief system of not just one but many cultures. The story is delicately threaded through the first half, then fast and action packed in the second half. Joselin is my favourite character in the book.
Loved it!

Monikan21 Nov 03, 2013

Ooh this was torture to get to the good part - but after 250 or 300 pages it finally got better. I enjoyed the 2nd part of the book but I cannot say that I actually connected to the main character - she seemed "too different". I may read the other books but I fear they will be a long read.

Sep 14, 2013

Not an easy book to read, I must admit. It took quite a while to remember the names, places and all the relationships. But man, once she is held in captive in Skaldia (which is about halfway through the book), the story really picks up until the end. The latter half is AWESOME! with lots of twists and turns, tonnes of heartbreak and crying (for me at least) but many joyous moments too.

View All Comments


Add a Quote
Jan 17, 2017

Such a small thing on which to hinge a fate. Nothing more than a mote, a fleck, a mere speck of color. If it had been any other hue, perhaps it would have been a different story.

May 19, 2014

"Because I could." - Melisande

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

"... the keeping of secrets from adults is oft the only power a child may hope to possess." -Phedre

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

"That which yields, is not always weak." -Hyacinthe

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

"It is human nature, to give in hope of getting." -Anafiel Delaunay

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

"To have a traitor for an ally is to have an enemy-in-waiting." -Phedre

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

“It is a fine line, in all of us, between civilization and savagery. To any who think they would never cross it, I can only say, if you have never known what it is to be utterly betrayed and abandoned, you cannot know how close it is.” -Phedre

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

“It's funny, how one can look back on a sorrow one thought one might well die of at the time, and know that one had not yet reckoned the tenth part of true grief.” -Phedre

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

“When Love cast me out, it was Cruelty who took pity upon me” -Phedre

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

"Love as thou wilt." -Elua


Add Age Suitability
Nov 23, 2016

eecrites thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

Jun 21, 2012

Kathea thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over

Helen_Joan Jun 30, 2011

Helen_Joan thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


Add Notices
KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

Sexual Content: Lots of sexual passages and many varieties of sexuality.

KOUJOKAKYUU Feb 03, 2013

Violence: Our protagonist experiences pleasure with pain, so lots of rough sex, although the author does differentiate between consensual S&M sex and rape/torture.

Jun 11, 2008

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.


Add a Summary
Jan 17, 2017

Abandoned by her parents on the doorstep of the Night Court—home to the courtesans of Terre D’Ange—Phèdre is groomed for a life of service to Naamah in the City of Elua. But a red spot in her left eye marks her unfit to officially serve in the Night Court, so her marque is sold to the courtier Anafiel Delaunay, who raises her up to be a spy as well as a courtesan. Delaunay is also the only one to recognize what the red mote in her eye betokens; Phèdre is marked by Blessed Elua’s companion Kushiel, and she is an anguisette, doomed to take her pleasure in pain. Without knowing the depths in which is swimming, Phèdre stumbles upon the key to a plot that threatens the Crown, and indeed Terre D’Ange itself.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at Arapahoe Libraries

To Top