Thursday, October 2, 2014

ARC Review: Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Title: Heir of Fire
Series: Throne of Glass #3
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Published: September 2, 2014 by Bloomsbury
(Amazon / Goodreads)

Synopsis: 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?

*** Special thanks to Brittany at Please Feed the Bookworm for trading ARCs with me so I could read this one! ***

*** This is the third book in a series so it may contain spoilers for the first two books. Drop everything and read them (the novellas too)****

I have become the latest victim of the dreaded "post-Heir of Fire book hangover." This series which continues to get more complex as it goes on, is also getting better and better. This third book in the fantastic Throne of Glass series has complex and interesting characters, a creative world that we get to further explore, and an engaging plot with even more mystery.

Once again, my favorite thing about this series is the the characters. We of course have our wonderful MC, Cealena Sardothian. At the end of Crown of Midnight, we learned a little bit more about Cealena and her past and this book continues to teach us so much about Cealena in Heir of Fire. What I have always been struck by her is that she's this kickass assassin and heroine but she is also vulnerable and kind. She often puts others' needs before her own and tends to find herself in situations where the two are at odds. In Heir of Fire we continue to learn more about how the Cealena that we know and love got to be that way, as we learn more about her past. But we also see this incredible development and character arc for her. In this book she becomes even more badass as more secrets about her are revealed. (Seriously I am desperately trying to be vague, but trust me when I say it is amazing!)

This is how I imagine Manon responding to anything.
But what I am realizing about this series is that it is not just Cealena's story. It is also the story of characters we know and love like Dorian and Chaol. Dorian, in particular, continues to develop in this book. He's still the ideal prince and there were more Dorian shipping feels that I missed in Crown of Midnight, but the big revelation in Crown of Midnight came to a head in Heir of Fire and I am so curious to see where things will go for Dorian, things do not look good. Things also do not look good for Chaol. In Heir of Fire he gets involved in some things that will eventually be creating a lot of conflict for him and others. In this book I was struck by how he is so fixated on loyalty and honor, but he has a bit of a crisis because he has to decide where that loyalty lies. And then there are the new characters. I am head-over-heels in love with Manon Blackbeak, one of the Iron-Teeth Witches. She is this incredibly tough and ruthless killer but like Cealena she is surprisingly full of heart and she's also sullen and disaffected about it all. She is my favorite type of well-rounded and dubious character and her introduction is one of the best I have ever seen! Then we have Rowan Whitethorn, a tough but surprisingly supportive Fae warrior, and Aedion, a general in the King's army who is ruthlessly killing his own people but harbors a secret that creates a lot of conflict throughout the book. Then of course there is the kind who is even more diabolical in this one. Every character is so interesting and well-rounded that it makes this the most engaging book in the series.

And it may be because I am so invested in the characters but in this book I wasn't as annoyed by the changing perspectives. Or maybe it was because many of the characters were in different places or doing different things. When they were all together it felt odd to have it change to someone different, but when they are more disconnected it was fine. There are however always issues for me when it comes to that format. Some characters have more chapters than others. Perhaps because their plot lines are slower or because they are just more important, but I found myself wishing there were more development of certain things and less development of others (seriously, I would read a whole book about Manon). And even though I wasn't as annoyed, I still didn't really enjoy the changing character perspectives.

But what I did enjoy was the world-building. In Heir of Fire the world of this series continues to expand as we travel out of Adarlan and Rifthold. We travel with Cealena to Wendlyn, the Eastern Continent, an area controlled by the Fae. It was so interesting to learn about Fae culture and of course their magic. In Heir of Fire, we continue to learn more magic than we previously got and that's not just from the Fae. There are the more sinister magical forces at play here in the world, like the King and his "creatures" who we were first introduced to in Crown of Midnight and get to learn more about in this book. We even get to explore how the King could have made magic disappear in Erilea. Then there is the more dubious ones like the Iron-Teeth witches and their wyverns, and even some Fae. I love how magic continues to grow in this world and how it's role in the plot continues to grow with it. But that is only one part of what makes this world so interesting and engaging. The book is also full of political intrigue. We continue to spend time with rebels who are working to overthrow the king and things take on a whole new dimension after the revelation in Crown of Midnight. The scheming and plotting in this book is amazing!

This creative and engaging world with it's growing magic and political intrigue makes the plot all the more interesting. As usual there were sporadic action scenes to keep things interesting and exciting, but the majority of the book was focused on the mystery and the story line begun in the previous books.The larger plot lines of the series continues to take shape as we learn more about Wordkeys and their history. However with this series being composed of six books, Heir of Fire definitely feels like the middle transitional book (think Goblet of Fire or A Storm of Swords). It doesn't really have much of it's own plot, it mostly just continues to move the story forward while slowly answering a few questions but asking way more than it answers. Things kind of get a little muddle and complicated at times. But Heir of Fire is full of so much mystery, twists, and cliffhangers. The ending of the book took me through the entire spectrum of emotion and desperately has me wanting the next book! That's the problem with only marathoning half a series, now I have to play the waiting game!

I give Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas a 9.5 out of 10 stars

With it's well-rounded and interesting characters, a creative world full of magic and political intrigue, and it's mysterious and action-packed plot this YA Fantasy series is a must read for fans of the genre. I can't wait to continue reading but I really wish I didn't have to wait a whole year!

Have you read Heir of Fire? What did you think? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!


  1. Love the review and the GOT gifs <3. I REALLY enoyed/loved Heir Of Fire (though I liked the first two more becouse of the pacing but it was fantastic). Now I just can't wait for the third book(it's going to be epic I can feel it)!

  2. LOVE THIS! I'm so glad i got to share this with you and I actually am reading Stitching Snow now so yay for our trade! Sigh...How epic is this story becoming?! I can't wait to see what happens next. will be hunting SJ books at BEA for sure. We should do it together!