'The Cloudmaster and his stormlords command wealth and power. But can they save themselves from a rogue rainlord? Terelle is on the run when an old man with the ability to paint pictures on water employs her as his apprentice -- and paints her portrait. She thinks she is safe, until she discovers his floating artworks can fix an immutable future for those portrayed in them. She has become a prisoner of her own painted future.
The Cloudmaster and his stormlords keep the land alive with their power over water and rain. However, the current Cloudmaster is dying and has no stormlord heir because all the promising young men and women have died in troubling circumstances. An expedition mounted to scour the countryside for a potential stormlord locates a young village lad called Shale. Kidnapped and imprisoned, Shale finds himself a tool in a struggle between the warring factions of the land -- because whoever commands a stormlord, commands the water of a nation ...' Source: ww.harpercollins.com.au/ (Sighted 19/10/2009).
'Shale Flint is forced to help the devious rainlord, Taquar Sardonyx, in his quest to create rain - even though Taquar's lust for power threatens to consume all that stands in his path.
'Terelle leaves the Scarpen with her great-grandfather, Russet ... his painting of her future has trapped her into doing his will. Obsessed with regaining his status as a Watergiver lord in his homeland, it seems that Russet will go to any lengths to attain his goal.
'Meanwhile, Ryka Feldspar has been captured and taken as a concubine by a Reduner tribemaster. Desperate to escape, she discovers her Rainlord husband, Kaneth, in the slave lines ... but, to Ryka's despair, he has no memories of their time together.' (From the publisher's website.)