‘Heir of Fire’, by Sarah. J. Maas, was utterly, utterly fantastic.
It lived up to my soaring expectations after the first two books (Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight.) had been so truly unbeatable, and kept up with the rapid pace that the previous books had set.
The plot, without revealing too much, follows Celaena Sardothien, former assassin and now King’s Champion, who has been sent to Wendlyn to supposedly kill the Royal Family there – although she has no intention of doing that. Instead, she sets about fulfilling her vow to Nehemia, which means accepting her heritage…and her power.
However, her story is broken up by other perspectives: Prince Dorian and his struggle to keep his dark secret; Captain of the Guard, Chaol Westfall, who has had to resort to trading information in the hope of saving his friends; and two new characters, each with a different spin to put on Erilea. These are quiet, timid castle healer, Sorscha, and Manon Blackbeak, heir to the Blackbeak witch coven and leader of the Thirteen. Personally, I found that these new additions were quite interesting, especially Manon, whose collected manner instantly drew me in.
Unfortunately, at the start of the book, I found myself disappointed. Not with the plot, but with Celaena. In Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight, she was a steely, intelligent, razor-witted woman, with great control and maturity. In Heir of Fire, I found her a bit more childish and whiny. Of course, in the book, we discover that her past has been extremely dark, but at this point, I didn’t know enough of her hardship – she just seemed to be a very immature copy of the Celaena I had grown to love. By the end, though, she had proved herself to me again.
Also, I found that Chaol’s story was very same-y: it felt as though I was reading a repeated passage again and again, with the same things happening each time. Every other character’s story was advancing in leaps and bounds, and it felt as though the growth of the story for Chaol was rather stunted.
Other than that, I can’t really fault it. The plot – certainly towards the end, at least – was stuffed full of action, not to mention the twist that left my jaw hanging open; the style was well-suited to the story, and incorporated a good mix of description, speech and action; and all of the beloved characters were cleverly linked together.
I would recommend it to everyone who has read the previous two books (discounting the prequel), and if you haven’t read them, do!
Overall rating: 9/10
What an incredible book.