Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Heir of Fire - Sarah J. Maas

[Please note that this is the third novel in the Throne of Glass series. so there may be spoilers for the previous books in the series. You can alternatively check out my review of the prequel novellas, book one Throne of Glass or book two Crown of Midnight.]

Heir of Fire book cover
Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #3
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Publication Date: September 2, 2014
Source/Format: Borrowed from Adam (Thanks!) || ARC
[I received this book for review from the publisher. This in no way affects the thoughts expressed in my review.]

Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy. 

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love? (from Goodreads)

[I have tried and failed many times to write down my thoughts on Heir of Fire. So, this is my official disclaimer to warn you that this blog post will not be completely coherent, but it will be fangirly, wordy and feelsy.]

Just to try to main some level of professionalism, here’s my official Goodreads review, which I shared months before now right when I had finished reading the ARC of Heir of Fire that my friend Adam so generously lent me:


And for those of you interested in such things, I’ve shared my status updates while reading Heir of Fire (with permission from my friend Brittany, who does this for her reviews):

Now, here’s an accurate (photographic) portrayal of my feelings as I read Heir of Fire:

Heir of Fire is a seriously impressive addition to the Throne of Glass series. It continues where Crown of Midnight leaves off, seamlessly transitioning from the ending that left my emotions jumbled into a new part of Celaena’s story. As I predicted, Sarah fully embraced the opportunity to explore the world, sneak in new revelations and insights into familiar characters, introduce new players in this tale and still tell a compelling, immersive story. Sarah’s ability to tell this story in the way that only she is capable of is, in fact, remarkable and continues to get better and better with each of her books.

In Heir of Fire, there are four separate story threads that follow specific characters: Celaena, Chaol, Dorian and Manon (a new character!). While fantasy veterans will have no trouble following each person’s specific plot, fantasy newbies need not fear – it’s fairly simple to keep up! Each one of them has different things at stake, different experiences to face, and they have such different personalities that each of their specific chapters leaves a strong impression. It was clever, and very addicting, to tell the story this way, as I was constantly torn between satisfaction with a character’s chapter and an appetite for the next one of theirs. I won’t go into what these characters are up to specifically, but suffice it to say that it seems like something larger is brewing – and it’s all connected.

In terms of characters, it’s a pleasant treat that we are reunited with familiar faces in Heir of Fire in the form of Celaena, Chaol & Dorian. All three of them are reeling from the things they’ve learned about themselves and each other, and figuring out what they should be doing about it. It is a bit refreshing that they’re given the opportunity to understand themselves (without the others to cloud their judgment) a little better. All three become stronger and better in many ways, and watching them slowly learn to flourish and accept things was pretty great. I love these three so much, so I’m clearly biased, but each one’s story arc in Heir of Fire was so damn good.

Heir of Fire also introduces us to new characters, most memorably Manon (and her wyvern), Rowan and Aedion. Manon is, quite simply, badass. She’s a ruthless adversary, capable of acts that would horrify ordinary people. But her ability to connect to her wyvern, and the hints of humanity she sometimes displays make her a curious one indeed. Then there’s Aedion, cousin to Celaena, who has been fighting on behalf of the king of Adarlan. I found him a complicated, curious guy, but he mostly reminded me of an older brother figure (which I’ve always loved the idea of). And finally, there’s Rowan, beloved Rowan, a warrior bound to Queen Maeve, who bears powerful abilities. Right away, there’s something very appealing about this guy, and I won’t say more than that so you can find out for yourself when you read this!

Honestly, the bottom line is: I love the Throne of Glass series. Heir of Fire, in all its glory, just further cements my devotion to it. Sarah’s storytelling is truly incredible, and just grows more powerful with every successive novel in her series. I loved Heir of Fire, and certainly look forward to seeing where Sarah takes us next.

22 comments:

  1. I cannot handle my jealousy right now. CANNOT. HANDLE. IT.
    At least you let me know how awesome it was though, that kind of makes me forgive you for reading it before me :P

    I want to read this so badly it's ridiculous!!!!

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  2. Your reading voice is awesome, Alexa. I'm serious! I listened to the whole video and think your voice is totally audiobook material! Loved reminiscing Anna through that first chapter! I'm def going to give it a reread sometime. :DDD

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  3. Oh my gosh, I just finished this book and I want to crawl in a corner and cry over the fact that it's over a year until the next one!!! But seriously so good. I really loved Manon and her wyvern. That was one of my favorite storylines in the book. I was disappointed that we got no Chaol-Celaena action, but I totally agree with you about it being refreshing to see each of those three characters grow apart from each other. I think they needed that. And I loved Aedion. You're totally right about the older brother thing. He was great. And Rowan. Loved him so much!! This book took the whole story to another level and I absolutely love Sarah. Now for that horrible wait...

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  4. I just listened to the audio and I must admit, you are 100% better than the audio reader! I should have hired you to read the book to me instead. :-)

    Love this post!

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  5. OMG I LOVE THIS SO MUCH. What a fabulous story, and what a FANASTIC way to fall in love with Anna! Your friends sound amazing.

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  6. Ha, I love that you and your friends read it out loud to one another. I plan do this with my students in the classroom one day with other books. By hearing a story out loud, it creates such a unique experience. Not every reader can visualize a story from words on a page, so doing it out loud is a great way to capture a different type of reader's attention.

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  7. Lovely review!! Currently at 400 pages, SO EXCITED to keep going :)

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  8. I am in love with this book -- and so glad you were there to email with about all my FEELINGS associated with it!!!

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  9. I am so, so happy to see such an awesome and positive review! I'm intrigued by the new characters, they sound amazing. So excited for HoF to release!


    Wonderful review! :)

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  10. That's absolutely fantastic! Being able to share a book like that with friends, that's amazing!

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  11. That's one of the cutest bookish stories I've read! I love the idea of sharing a book with your friends like that. :)

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  12. I love reading middle grade, so I am surprised to be first hearing about this one! It sounds so sweet, and hopefully I can fit it in before summer ends. Wonderful review!



    Bella @ Ciao Bella
    chicandpetite.wordpress.com

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  13. Anna will also always have a special place in my heart because it was the first YA book I read. We don't have many YA books in my local bookstore here in Austria and so I mostly read adult books but one day I discovered Anna, bought it, read it and fell in love with it.
    Listening to you reading it was really beautiful. Maybe I should check out audiobooks some day.

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  14. This is such a cute story. I love that you all read the book together. I wish more of my friends enjoyed reading, then maybe I could do this with them as well. I'm not one to listen to audio books, and if I do I don't usually finish the entire thing. I'm going to give it a go again with The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line (Veronica Mars #1) since Kristen Bell does the narrating. =)

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  15. I finished this one not that long ago and I loved it! I can't recommend it (or the entire series for that matter) enough! I won't rest until everyone reads it. Haha :)

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  16. That would be so much fun to read these together! I think once I get Isla and read it, I'll for sure be rereading the first two books. I can't wait to get my copy! It's going to be sooooo good!

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  17. Thanks for the review! This book sounds interesting! Adding it to my list of books to read!

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  18. Fantastic review! I love the photos of your reactions ;)
    I'm really excited to start reading this book! What with school starting, I haven't had as much time to read as I'd like, but hopefully this weekend I'll be able to begin Heir of Fire. The positive reviews I'm seeing all over the place are just fueling my intense NEED for this book. *hyperventilation*

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  19. Christina R. in the rafflecopter


    LOVE this review! It's awesome to see your reactions as it happened live!!


    Glad her writing keeps getting more and more wonderful :)

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  20. Great review! I didn't think I could love the new characters as much as I love the old one. DEAD WRONG! All of the new additions were amazing <3

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  21. Fantastic review! What I really loved was how far Celaena as a character has come. She's developed so much even though bad things keep happening. So I'm really glad Sarah made a character that can endure and learn.

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Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

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