Beneath the Gods’ Tree

Amanah knows all-too-well the dangers of catching the attention of the upper class of Arruk. Using her position as a guard to steal secrets of healing and help other lower class people means she works hard to remain unnoticed.

Fellow guard Taunos is boisterous, laughing, larger than life–and always around. He attracts attention as easily as breathing, which makes being associated with him dangerous. Better to stay far away, regardless of her attraction to him and his easy calm.

But when Amanah inadvertently insults a magistrate, she must flee the city to avoid his vengeance. She takes a last-minute job escorting a pair of noblemen to another town–a job Taunos is also hired for.

Along the way, she’s forced to reveal her stolen healing skills to keep the small group alive, and finds more support from Taunos than she ever would have dreamed. His confident charm becomes hard to ignore as he sees her as no one else has, even when she’s doing her best to be invisible. But opening herself to romance might be as dangerous as the wildlife and bandits they face in the wilderness, and pursuing her dreams of becoming a healer could attract the ire of those in power.

This is a standalone low fantasy adventure set in the same world as the Children of the Nexus series. It has a friends-to-lovers romance (mild steam) with grumpy-sunshine dynamics and a cinnamon roll love interest. It also has a strong friendship and strong sibling relationship, gay side-characters, main character anxiety rep, and tons of banter, all told from a single third-person past-tense POV. No third act break up!

For fans of the Dauntless Path series, T. Kingfisher’s The Saint of Steel series, and The Witch Collector by Charissa Weaks

Linked to the Children of the Nexus series, this is set after Prelude Cycle and before Between Starfalls, but can be read as a standalone or in any order with the series. The main character, Amanah, appears in Let Loose the Fallen and is briefly mentioned in Between Starfalls. Taunos is a main character of the Children of the Nexus series.

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Content Warnings for Beneath the Gods’ Tree can be found by clicking here

systemic injustice (classism), animal abuse/death, fantasy violence/injuries, fantasy discrimination, anxiety, instances of vomiting, menstruation, theft, bullying, abuse, mild steam

This book has:

  • so much banter
  • strong sibling relationship
  • strong friendships
  • friends-to-lovers (mild steam: on page make-out sessions, no on-page sex)
  • LGBTQ+ side characters
  • main character anxiety rep
  • diverse cast with immersive worldbuilding
  • action and adventure, wilderness survival style
  • low fantasy (none of the main group displays clear magic on page)
  • single PoV, third person past tense