The City in the Lake

The Kingdom’s Heart is the City. The City’s heart is the King. The King’s heart is the Prince. The Prince is missing.

Ever since the Prince disappeared, nothing has been right in the Kingdom. Something has disturbed the strange, old magic that whispers around its borders … something cunning and powerful. And the disturbance extends to the farthest reaches of the Kingdom, including the idyllic village where Timou is learning to be a mage under her father’s tutelage.

When Timou’s father journeys to the City to help look for the Prince, but never returns, Timou senses that the disturbance in the Kingdom is linked to her – and to the undiscovered heritage of the mother she never knew. She must leave her village, even if it means confronting powers greater than her own, even though what she finds may challenge everything she knows. Even if it means leaving love behind.

Book Details:

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Publisher:Strange Chemistry (Angry Robot)

North American Print Edition

Publisher:Knopf (Random House) US
Date:June 2008 (Hardcover) / March 2011 (Paperback)


Date:July 2008


“It’s the poetic, shimmering language and fascinating unfolding of worlds that elevates this engrossing story beyond its formula… Fans of Sharon Shinn’s books will find a similar celebration of the natural world – from the dense darkness of a forest to the ‘crystalline music’ of the stars — in this vividly imagined debut.”

—– Booklist (starred review)

“For fans of Juliet Marillier, Patricia McKillip, Robin McKinley, and Sharon Shinn, looking for that next fix of luscious, romantic, flawless fantasy? Look no further – Rachel Neumeier’s The City in the Lake is for you.”

– Thea, The Book Smugglers

“OH MY GOD, I was so not prepared for how awesome this book is. Prose, setting, story, characters, everything is top notch and I too loved this book.”

– Ana, The Book Smugglers

“Neumeier’s style in this particular book is rich and flowing, reminiscent of Robin McKinley’s prose … If you’re in the mood for a heavy, richly written tale, The City in the Lake is right up your alley.”

– Terri, Starlight Book Reviews

The City in the Lake is a beautifully written, impressive and quiet book that I loved reading. This book deserves to be read when you can concentrate completely on the rich language Rachel Neumeier uses. I would recommend this book to all readers who enjoy reading fantasy and quiet, thoughtful books.”

– Julchen, About Happy Books

“Dynamic characters (especially the Hunter), a gripping story, convincing world creation and descriptive writing … I particularly think girls would appreciate the female protagonist, lack of brutal battle scenes and intellectual slant of the quest.”

– Jill Tullo, The Well-Read Child

“The tone and lyricism of The City in the Lake lends it the quality of old-school fantasy that is sorely missing from so many recent offerings. What’s more, Neumeier’s writing is reminiscent of Patricia McKillip, dreamlike and hauntingly evocative.”

– Rachel, Annotated Bibliophile

“The magic in this book is unlike most of the fantasy I have read before … This is a very satisfying fantasy novel, and with both female and male main characters is a good choice for either gender.”

– Karen, Book Obsession

“A beautiful, elegiac fantasy tale that is refreshingly small-scale and intimate”.

– Redcrest’s LiveJournal

“A lyrical fantasy [that] weaves several threads and layers together … thoughtful and lovely.”

– Kirkus Reviews