The Wise and the Wicked

November 30, 2020
The Wise and the Wicked

Rebecca Podos, Lambda Literary Award–winning author ofLike Water, returns with a lush, dark, and unforgettable story ofthe power of the past to shape our futures—and the courage it takesto change them.Ruby Chernyavsky has been told the stories since she was achild: The women in her family, once possessed of great magicalabilities to remake lives and stave off death itself, were forcedto flee their Russian home for America in order to escape thefearful men who sought to destroy them.Such has it always been, Ruby's been told, for powerfulwomen.Today, these stories seem no more real to Ruby than folktales,except for the smallest bit of power left in their blood: when eachof them comes of age, she will have a vision of who she will bewhen she dies—a destiny as inescapable as it is inevitable.Ruby is no exception, and neither is her mother, although sheran from her fate years ago, abandoning Ruby and her sisters. It'sa fool's errand, because they all know the truth: there is noescaping one's Time.Until Ruby's great-aunt Polina passes away, and, for the firsttime, a Chernyavsky's death does not match her vision. Suddenly,things Ruby never thought she'd be allowed to hope for—life, love,time—seem possible.But as she and her cousin Cece begin to dig into the family'shistory to find out whether they, too, can change their fates, theylearn that nothing comes without a cost. Especially not hope.