Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass
Genres: Action/Adventure, Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Maturity Level: 3.5
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Celaena has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak―but at an unspeakable cost. Now, she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth . . . a truth about her heritage that could change her life―and her future―forever. Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. Will Celaena find the strength to not only fight her inner demons, but to take on the evil that is about to be unleashed?
Finally, something in this series I can get behind! DRAGONS!
Well, I guess they’re dragons anyway. Maas calls them Wyverns. As I mentioned before, her writing isn’t very good, so I didn’t really get a clear picture of what Wyverns were supposed to look like as I was reading. But they seem close enough, so I just pictured them as very mean dragons. The Iron Teeth Witches were also interesting. I looked forward to reading the sections of the novel about the witches and their wyverns. They were exciting, brought an interesting political dynamic, and were substantially different from the other characters. It was the only section of this book that felt fresh.
The rest of Heir of Fire was more of the same. Calaena is training, again, this time with magic. Chaol can’t decide what is more important to him, his honor or his friends. Dorian is thinking with his penis more than his head. Everyone is always threatening to kill someone else, but never actually even tries. Lots of growling. Many obsidian (and now onyx!) descriptions.
At this point the POV switches have gotten a little out of hand. Very out of hand. There were at least EIGHT different point of views, some of which lasted for as little as a section of a chapter. It’s like Maas can’t give insight to the character unless the character is narrating. A crutch. She uses POV switches as a crutch, I suppose. Anyway, I found it distracting, and honestly made the book less intriguing. A character like Rowan is more interesting when you don’t know what he’s thinking. There wasn’t really any reason to show his POV when he doesn’t see anything Calaena doesn’t see.
In general Heir of Fire was a much slower read than the other books have been. Very much a LONG transition point for the characters to progress to who they were in the first book to who they are going to be in the coming books.
It really picked up in the last fifty pages or so, however. Characters of all shapes and sizes finally found their convictions. The narrative started moving along from the stalemate it had been at for most of the book, and things started happening. Aside from a few artless plot devices to get the reader itching to read the next book, the writing improved a lot as well. When Calaena met Queen Maeve, that was Maas’s best writing yet, and even I was a little surprised at what happened. But not surprised like “I should have seen that coming!” More like, “Oh, of course I wouldn’t have guessed that because I’ve never heard of that character before because she didn’t want me to guess what would happen.”
So in general, just like the others in this series, some great things, some not so great. But it has so far delivered exactly what I wanted from it, a fun summer read.