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Knave Of Diamonds
The Royal Pains Book Six

Roberta Olsen Major
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Twins Jillian and Julian have been Prince Jacot's best friends all their lives. They have laughed at his antics, helped him out of scrapes, and wondered if he would ever really grow up.

When the Queen of Coalveign becomes deathly ill, Jacot must look to his strengths, and rely on his friends, as he embarks on a dangerous journey to save his mother's life.

I knelt on a shelf built into the wall and peered through a peephole into the castle library. On the other side of the wall was a portrait of King Philbert the Seventh. I was pretty sure no one but me knew there was a small hole where his left pupil ought to have been; it was through this small hole that I sometimes listened in on the lessons and studies of the future king of Coalveign.

“Your Highness.”

Jacot, Prince of Coalveign, ignored the nasal voice of his tutor. With a series of quick folds, he transformed the square of parchment in his hands into a graceful swan. With a flick of one nail-bitten finger, Jacot launched the swan off the heavy oaken table. It hit Millwood Slag between the eyes.

“Oops,” Jacot said with a grin.

“Your Highness,” Slag repeated, this time through clenched teeth, “your sums, if you please.” The tutor slapped another square of parchment down on the table in front of the prince.

“Master Slag, I’m sorry to say that I really don’t please,” Jacot said. “Not when it comes to sums.” He was up out of his chair, heading for the door.

“Am I to tell Queen Zirconia you chose to abandon your duties?” Slag asked, baring his yellowing teeth at the back of the departing prince.

Jacot laughed. “Adding little numbers on scraps of parchment is the sum of my duties?” And he was gone.

With the tip of one slipper-shod foot, Millwood Slag crushed the parchment swan into the flagstone.

This made me mad. It was a lovely swan.

Millwood Slag is a boob, I thought. I told myself if I’d been in the library I would have stuffed that crumpled swan right up one of the tutor’s huge hairy nostrils--but there was a reason I lurked in tunnels and secret passageways. For a red-head, I didn’t have much gumption.

I sighed as I climbed down from the shelf behind the portrait.

Jacot was good at a lot of things, but being diplomatic with his tutor wasn’t one of them.

But Master Slag doesn’t make it easy, I thought fiercely.

Roberta Olsen Major wore out two toy typewriters as a child before her parents decided it would be more frugal to provide her with the real thing. Throughout junior high and high school, she used two fingers to tap out lurid, angst-filled stories peopled with impossibly beautiful characters speaking highly improbable dialogue.

After earning a BA from Brigham Young University, she worked as a librarian in sensible shoes, before switching her Major to the care and feeding of a scientific husband and two charming children.

A published playwright and reviewer of children’s books, she now lives in Texas, where she collects dust, gets taken for daily walks by her faithful Schnauzers, and is, as always, working on her next book.

The Ice Cream Crone: “…a galloping romp of hilarity on a quest of pure enjoyment. Roberta Olsen Major delights her readers with wit, puns, and good old silliness… filled with the perfect combination of chivalry and joviality… Life, love and the pursuit of laughter reign…” --Joyce Handzo, In the Library Reviews, October 10, 2003

The Ice Cream Crone: “… takes ‘happily ever after’ a hop, skip and a jump farther, leading the child in us all on a merry romp through ‘what if’.” -- Pam Ripling, author of Locker Shock!

Fiction Books :: Fantasy Books :: Epic Books

ISBN: 1597057916
ISBN(13-digit): 9781597057912
Copyright: 2008
Book Publisher: Wings e Press
Binding: Perfect
No. of Pages: 166
Paper Weight (lb): 7.2

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