Heir of Fire
By: Sarah J. Maas
Book #3 in Throne of Glass Series
Content Warnings: Violence, blood, gore, death, verbal abuse, alcohol consumption, depictions of depression, language
In Heir of Fire, a great fire burns forging our main characters into upcoming heroes. Celaena, Chaol, and Dorian undergo some amazing development when under pressure.
To start, I think it’s ironic how Chaol, the one most uncomfortable with Celaena’s identity, is the one who ended up sending her off to embrace it. At first, Celaena blocks out her traumatic past and spends her days drinking and brawling with others. Then comes a poignant event where she’s forced to relive the brutal deaths of so many loved ones, after which she reflects upon her mistakes and failings and makes an important decision. This was one of the most iconic moments of the series thus far and I think it was brilliantly done.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Chaol and Dorian’s growth. Both have matured considerably since the previous book. All I can say is both take huge risks in doing what they believe is right for the world. It was also nice seeing how they still care deeply for Celaena in spite of her absence. Maas did something a little different with the initial love triangle. It was refreshing to see the mess of conflicting emotions transform into a solid friendship between the two Adarlan men and Celaena.
However, I think it’s going to be a while before I warm up to some of the new characters. Rowan, a notoriously powerful Fae and member of Queen Maeve’s cadre, was needlessly cruel to Celaena. It wasn’t easy enduring his onslaught of verbal abuse as he tried to get Celaena to master her powers. He only made her more depressed. Even worse that Celaena is attracted to him. Their relationship gets better after they air some of their grievances, but it was too soon to consider romantic interest, in my humble opinion.
Maas also introduces an Ironteeth witch named Manon, who gets to have her own sections throughout the book. At first I didn’t care about her story, but her perspective became more interesting when it introduced witch lore and politics, which is all drenched in blood. Manon also offered a peek at the machinations of the Adarlan King. I began to like her more as a character when she chose Abraxos over Titus. The decision made her more complex. Abraxos is one of the most physically weak wyverns whereas Titus was coveted by the top ranking witches. Her nurturing the wyvern against her grandmother’s wishes shows a thread of humanity that may make future interactions with her clan interesting.
Overall, I enjoyed Heir of Fire, but I prefer the first two installments. I think this one could have been shortened a bit, but if you like the characters enough you might not mind the length. There’s some devastating conflict at the end that has me worried for them. I guess I have no choice but to read the next installment to see if these newly forged weapons will break or strike true.
More Musings & Magic
If you were part of Maas’s fantasy world, what would you like to be: human, witch, or Fae? I personally think it would be exhilarating to run with the speed of a Fae! I love running myself so it’d be cool to travel the world by foot in such a short span of time.
Please keep the magic alive and share your comments below!