Over a century ago, sky painters saved the world from the exploding sun, hiding the sky-that-was behind a magical sky-that-should-be. Before the paint had even dried, the most powerful nations founded the Council of the Frozen Star, seizing control over all color enchanters. Now, people fear their children will show a talent for color magic, and be forced to serve the Council on some far-flung star tower, repainting the sky for the rest of their lives.
Eleven-year-old Indigo Thorne has been trained from birth to follow in her mother’s footsteps as the Council’s next leader. But Indigo loves history, not politics. If only her books could explain why the sky painters are no longer considered heroes.
When Indigo uses magic for the first time, her mother orders her to hide it. Desperate to escape the future her mother’s planned, Indigo runs away to Lotwick Manor, the nearest Chroma Academy, to learn from other sky painters. There, Indigo finds a series of strange shapes carved into a fireplace mantle—shapes she’s seen before, on her mother’s Council leader ring. And when Indigo presses them in the order they appear around the ring, a secret compartment opens, revealing a yellowed piece of paper. And a clue.
Together with her new sky painter friends, Leander and June, Indigo begins a hundred-and-eleven-year-old scavenger hunt through the mansion, navigating secret passageways and hidden rooms to discover what the Council took such pains to hide. But what they find at the end is almost as dangerous as the sun: something with the power to repaint the world.