I have finished Star of the Morning, Book 1 of Lynn Kurland's Novels of the Nine Kingdoms.
Darkness grows even as the hope, the star of the morning, rises as a mage's daughter confronts, well, magic, in addition to truths dead set against personal convictions. While I typically do not go for Romantic Fantasy, this one has certainly been a ride - and free of many of the typical clichés, better yet, and not just on the romance quarter. I have certainly never seen THAT happen to a magic sword, and swords, mage-born and otherwise, are necessary to keep Neroche and indeed all the Nine Kingdoms from falling to Lothar the black mage. Provided Morgan learns to accept a few things, of course, including that swords are not the only honorable way to fight.