As I was reading this I was sure that it was a later book in a series, probably fourth or fifth and that author just wasn't good about giving you enough info about events from the previous books for everything to make proper sense. But it's actually the first in this series, which makes me think even less of the book. There is obviously a lot of back story but you never get a clear look at any of it. And I'm usually not the type to have trouble telling what's going on with a story. But this one is very frustrating, there are lots of characters but you never really see how they relate to each other or the events that occur. There is this sense that if the author would just tell you what is going on that you'd like the book. But she never does. Characters are at odds and nobody comes clear about why, people make choices that aren't adequately explained by the story. Meh. Not going to be looking for more by this author.