This was the December read for [FantasyFavorites]. It seemed to be an interesting premise; the monk Josan is a lowly lighthouse keeper who is recovering from a debilitating illness five years earlier. Lady Ysobel is a trade delegate back in the Empire five years after a failed rebellion with a mandate to stir up further trouble. Unsurprisingly, both these characters and the rebellion turn out to be linked together.
Frankly, I found the book boring. I liked Josan as a monk and lighthouse keeper, but as soon as he started having strange spells and being hunted by unknown asassins he was, amazingly, less interesting. And Ysobel was a selfish upstart who seemed lacking in redeeming qualities. I guessed the "big secret" early on - gosh, how amazing so many different things all happened five years ago and I wonder if they're related? - and by chapter 15 I really didn't care any more and gave up.
However, having said all that, other members of the group loved the book and are intending to read the rest of the trilogy, so don't necessarily trust my judgement.
The First Betrayal
The Chronicles of Josan, Book 1