Looking for a book we read back in the early 2000s (2003?) which had a male magician who disguised himself as a woman and was travelling on a quest with two other women, who were unaware of his real gender. Other remembered details follow:

  • probably written in the 1990s
  • the male mage (while disguised a woman) was involved in a sexual encounter/orgy with a stable boy, and his secret identity was, er, noticed
  • high fantasy, felt inspired by Lord of the Rings
  • there was a language which at least one character knew, which was forbidden to speak out loud (similar to the reluctance of people in LoTR to speak out loud the language of Mordor)
  • one character might have been able to talk to horses
  • the cover of the book was purple
  • don't remember if the author was male or female.
  • possibly a young adult book

Thanks in advance for any hints and help.

  • 2
    This rings a vague bell. Could it have been one of LE Modesitt's Recluce books? – Daniel Roseman Jun 16 at 13:20
  • 2
    Sounds like it could be a Mercedes Lackey book. – KenM Jun 16 at 16:15

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