I hope everyone in the States had a wonderful 4th of July. I spent the long weekend reading, sampling various restaurants in the area, playing with ponies, chasing Pokémon, and relaxing. The weather was beautiful all weekend long. I hope your weekend was as enjoyable.
May Contain Spoilers
I thought this was very slow, and compared to the first book, there wasn’t enough action to hold my interest. Since Dirk is being set up as Talia’s love interest, I thought all of the time spent building Kris up as her buddy with benefits pointless (he’s not my favorite Herald, anyway). I liked the pairing of Skif and Talia better if the relationship wasn’t going beyond friends. Dirk was in this installment for only a couple of pages, and since I like him better than Kris, I was disappointed with his absence.
Most of the book focuses on Talia’s inner struggle to contain her Gift. When her mental shields completely fail, causing her emotions to telegraph to the world, she puts herself and Kris in danger. I didn’t find this challenge very compelling. I was more interested in her internship on the road, learning how to be a Herald. The scenes in the towns and villages, settling disputes or helping the villagers, were the most engaging for me.
A huge chunk of the story revolves around Talia and Kris being snowed in at a Waystation by a blizzard. This would be my own personal version of hell. I hate the cold, I hate the snow, I hate shoveling the snow, so reading chapter after chapter about them dealing with the elements didn’t tickle my imagination. Hopefully book 3 will be more like Arrow’s of the Queen, with Talia being front and center in court politics and attempts by her enemies to snatch away the Queen’s trust in her.
Grade: 2.75 – 3 stars
Review copy borrowed from my local library
About the book:
Set in the medieval fantasy kingdom of Valdemar, this unique and exciting novel continues the story of Talia. Having mastered the powers necessary to a guardian of the kingdom, she faces the final preparation for her initiation as adviser and protector of the Queen.