"Happy birthday, Sabriel."

Ten-year-old Sabriel smiled at her father, on one of his rare visits. It had been her birthday a month ago, but she didn't mind her father coming late – it just prolonged the celebrations. He handed her a package. "This is for you."

Sabriel eagerly tore off the wrappings to reveal a green leather book with silver fastenings. The spine bore the legend The Book of the Dead.

"What's this?" she asked, frowning slightly. She hadn't expected a book.

"That, Sabriel," said her father, "is the heritage of our family."

Sabriel opened the cover to the first page...