See How I Contended With The. . .
The Queen of Storms
I’ve been looking forward to volume two of the Firemane Saga, and have to say, I wasn’t disappointed.
Hatushaly and his young wife Hava have arrived in the prosperous trading town of Beran’s Hill to restore and reopen the fire-damaged Inn of the Three Stars. They are also preparing for the popular midsummer festival, where their friends Declan and Gwen will be wed.
But Hatu and Hava are not the ordinary loving couple they appear to be. They are assassins from the mysterious island of Coaltachin, home to the powerful and lethal Nocusara, the fearsome “Hidden Warriors.” Posing as innkeepers, they are awaiting instructions from their masters in the Kingdom of Night.
Hatu conceals an even more dangerous secret. He is the last remaining member of the legendary Firemanes, the ruling family of Ithrace. Known as the Kingdom of Flames, Ithrace was one of the five greatest realms of Tembria, ruled by Hatu’s father, Stervern Langene, until he and his people were betrayed. His heir, Hatu—then a baby—was hidden among the Nocusara, who raised him to become a deadly spy.
Hatu works hard to hide his true identity from all who would seek to use or to destroy him, as fate has other plans for the noble warrior. Unexpected calamity forces him to make choices he could not have dreamed awaited him.
A series of horrific events shatters the peace of Beran’s Hill, bringing death and devastation and unleashing monstrous forces. Once more, the Greater Realms of Tembria are threatened—and nothing will ever be the same again.
The story itself adopts a clever balance. It reveals more about Hatu, Hava and Declan; their evolving personalities; their relationship with each other and those around them; the true motivating factors in their lives – which seem to be changing the longer time goes on. And it also expands on the hints we received in the first book of a much larger picture: Was Lodavico acting out of pure narcissism when he betrayed the Firemane’s and tried to end their line, or were other players involved? Who is the real driving force behind the Church of the One? Exactly where do the foreign invaders come from and what is their actual agenda?
And how on earth are the ancient guardians of the Firemane’s, the Flame Guard, going to counter this growing threat. I mean . . . can they?
Yes, there’s a lot going on in the world of Garn – and beyond – it seems. But once again, Raymond E. Feist demonstrates why he’s an international bestseller of epic fantasy. The Queen of Storms is a masterclass in taking your time to fully introduce your characters, and how to gradually introduce the threads that will bind your story arc together in a way that keeps everything tight. The pace is steady throughout; our protagonists and antagonists as complex and engaging as ever; and the attention to detail is superb.
And the tease?
That’s as subtle as always. Feist creates an atmosphere of intrigue and growing tension that builds and builds . . . and keeps building, so that you’re always eager to keep the pages turning. I want more!
A most excellent sequel and a taste of even better things to come.