SHIMMER AND BURN (Margaret K. McElderry Books, August 8, 2017)
Nominated for RT Reviewers' Choice YA Fantasy of the Year, 2017
Faris grew up fighting to survive in the slums of Brindaigel while caring for her sister, Cadence. But when Cadence is caught trying to flee the kingdom and is sold into slavery, Faris reluctantly agrees to a lucrative scheme to buy her back, inadvertently binding herself to the power-hungry Princess Bryn, who wants to steal her father’s throne.
Now Faris must smuggle stolen magic into neighboring Avinea to incite its prince to alliance—magic that addicts in the war-torn country can sense in her blood and can steal with a touch. She and Bryn turn to a handsome traveling magician, North, who offers protection from Avinea’s many dangers, but he cannot save Faris from Bryn’s cruelty as she leverages Cadence’s freedom to force Faris to do anything—or kill anyone—she asks. Yet Faris is as fierce as Bryn, and even as she finds herself falling for North, she develops schemes of her own.
With the fate of kingdoms at stake, Faris, Bryn, and North maneuver through a dangerous game of magical and political machinations, where lives can be destroyed—or saved—with only a touch.
"Taranta's debut opens the door to a magical new world filled with adventure, strong characters, and an intriguing plot." -Booklist, June 2017
"Taranta's writing is nearly poetic and casts its own sort of magic." - RT Reviews, "Top Pick," June 2017
"In a crowded fantasy field, Taranta’s story stands out for its mature writing, inventive and scary creatures (and even scarier humans), and complex and often ruthless characters." - Publishers Weekly, August 2017
"This first tale...reveres its strong female characters and does not shy from the gritty, gruesome realities of uneasy alliances. Against a sea of vastly similar offerings, Taranta’s story rises above the competition in exciting and unique ways." - VOYA, August 2017
SPLENDOR AND SPARK (Margaret K. McElderry Books, December 4, 2018)
The fight is just beginning.
Faris has been forced to give up the man she loves for a dangerous but necessary alliance. Her loyalty is bound by a powerful spell to his future bride, the villainous Bryn. And her mother’s powerful spell that could be the key to saving Avinea fights with poisoned magic for control of her heart.
None of that matters though because everything Faris has done has been for Cadence, the little sister she’s been trying to rescue from the king’s slavery. Now they’re finally reunited, but Cadence has a gut-wrenching confession: she remembers everything from while she was under the king’s enchantment, and knows Faris didn’t take her place when she could have. She wants nothing to do with her.
Heartbroken, Faris focuses on tracking Merlock, the king who must be killed to stop The Burn, by manipulating her mother’s spell through her dreams. Before long though, Faris realizes these aren’t normal dreams, they might just be real, and they may show her a way to kill Merlock herself.
But there are things darker than poison that lie in The Burn, and not even the spell deep in Faris’s chest can stop them. Faris will again be faced with impossible choices. Does she risk everything to save Avinea, even if she might lose North and further betray her sister’s trust? Or does she succumb to the poison inside that begs her to think this time, finally, of herself?
Other projects include a YA dark fantasy featuring grave-robbing monsters with swords; and a MG fantasy set in Central Florida about a morally ambiguous family business and the witch who takes offense.