Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Full Force: Heir of Fire

Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas (Throne of Glass #3)
Bloomsbury, 2014

*As this is the third book in a series, there may be spoilers for the previous books - you have been warned!*

Celaena has left everything she knows and everyone she loves behind. Devastated by the death of her best friend, she must continue in her charade of serving the tyrant King of Adarlan if she has any chance of justice. Traveling to Wendlyn, she searches for answers and faces her darkest demons. Back in Rithfold, Chaol is willing to sacrifice his freedom and inherit a title he doesn't want if it means keeping Celaena and Dorian safe. However, he's pulled into dealings with the rebels and a fight he's desperate to avoid. Meanwhile, Dorian suffers with his own secrets and a dangerous group who has also been wronged prepares to take to the skies.

The stakes continue to rise in this third installment of Maas' epic fantasy series. The biggest in the series so far, the plot continues to thicken. In regards to characters we've come to know, some get more page time than other. Celaena continues to shine as a protagonist, a fierce young woman who this time around is forced to face an enemy unlike any we've seen her pitted against before: herself, her darkest secrets, her worst nightmares. Along side her for this literal but arguable more emotional journey is a new character, Rowan, someone who I was always excited to see because he too suffers, but there's a quiet and impressive strength that I can't wait to learn more about. Her chapters were by far my favorite ones, and her growth and pain was the most inspiring and heart-wrenching I've seen yet.

What sets this book apart from its predecessors is that the characters I've come to think of as the main three - Celaena, Chaol, and Dorian - spend most of the book apart from one another. As much as I'm a fan of their interactions, the separation gave them each space to grow (in some ways I liked, in others that make me nervous but there are still three more books to come in this series, so who knows what will happen?). A fourth major point of view also came in this book from the witches who are preparing for war.  While their plight was set up from events set in motion in Crown of Midnight, I did have a bit of trouble really getting into their story because it's still fairly separate from the others.

All in all, this book was a masterful continuation of a story that got off to a tremendous start. Emotionally gripping, action packed, and full of a fantastical mythology in a land where no one is safe and everyone has something to lose, Heir of Fire was a wild ride of a read and I cannot wait for book four, Queen of Shadows, to come out later this year.

Comments welcome, and, as always, happy reading!

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