Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

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The basics

Title: Heir of Fire

Author:

Series: Throne of Glass #3

- The Assassin's Blade (March 2014)
- Throne of Glass (August 2012)
- Crown of Midnight (August 2013)
- Heir of Fire (September 2014)
- Queen of Shadows (September 2015)
- Untitled (2016)
- Untitled (2017)

Add it: Goodreads

Goodreads Summary:

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?

in short

Celaena Sardothien has traveled to Wendlyn, to dispatch the royal family. However, she is lost and broken and has no intention of actually killing them. Then her Fae Queen aunt, Maeve, sends for her. Celaena decides to ask Maeve questions about the Wyrdkeys, but in order to get those answers, she is to train with Rowan Whitethorn, to learn how to control her magic. During all their training, Rowan and Celaena get closer, bonding over the fact that they have both lost people close to them. Around the fortress of demi Fae they live in, a lot of bodies are found, and they discover that the King of Adarlan has sent an army of soldiers, as well as three wicked creatures that turn out to be the Valg (those creatures that long ago. Celaena learns to master her magic, and also she starts grieving properly, and this book broke my fucking heart. When the Valg attack, she breaks down completely, but also gets back up again, and she destroys them all. She gets her answers from Maeve, and frees Rowan from his blood oath to her, and returns to Adarlan to set the world on fire.

Meanwhile, Chaol is struggling with where his loyalties lie and the fact that he doesn’t accept magic to be a thing. Dorian meets Sorscha, a healer, and he falls in love with her, working with her to contain his magic. Aedion Ashryver arrives, Aelin’s cousin and General of the North for the King of Terrasen. Chaol and Aedion start to exchange information, about Aelin and about the king’s magic, and they find out that he froze a triangle of land using three clocktowers. Eventually, though, the king finds out and he executes Sorscha, and captures Aedion and Dorian. Chaol quits his job and flees into Rifthold, to work together with rebel Ren Allsbrook.

And then there’s Manon Blackbeak, Ironteeth witch, who has to work for the king of Adarlan for a few years until she can claim back her country. The Ironteeth witches get to pick wyverns and train them, until they are ready to fight in the king’s army. Manon picks a baitbeast instead of an actual trained wyvern, and calls him Abraxos. She patches him up with iron teeth and claws and spidersilk wings, and they beat all the witches around. Take that.

what went down

  • In Crown of Midnight, the King of Adarlan sent Celaena Sardothien to Wendlyn, the gigantic country to the east of Erilea, where she was supposed to dispatch the royal family. However, at the end of the book, we also found out that Celaena was actually Aelin Ashryver Galathynius, the lost queen of Terrasen, and that she has now actually been sent to the country of her mother.
  • PART ONE HEIR OF ASH AW YESSSS
  • Celaena is chilling in Varese, in Wendlyn, and is doing nothing but brawling and lying in the sun. She has no plans of killing the royal family – they are, after all, Ashryvers, and also their Crown Prince, Galan, is too good and peaceful. Instead, she decides to ask her Fae Queen aunt, Maeve (sister of her great-grandmother, Mab, and Mora) about the Wyrdkeys. Then she meets Rowan Whitethorn, a Prince from Mora’s line, who takes her to travel south to Maeve’s lands.
  • Meanwhile in the castle, Chaol is struggling because he find out who Celaena really is, and he refuses to have anything to do with Dorian now that Dorian has magic – so Chaol can protect him, but still. They’re not really friends anymore. Then Aedion Ashryver arrives, Aelin’s cousin and the King’s Northern General. Chaol and Dorian don’t really like him. Aedion swaggers around being awesome. Also, he has the same eyes as Celaena.
  • Then we meet Manon Blackbeak, heir to the Blackbeak Ironteeth witch clan. She is also the leader of the Thirteen, the best of the Blackbeak clans. She is hunting around Fenharrow for Crochan witches (history lesson: in the country to the west of Adarlan, the Crochan witches used to rule, but the Ironteeth killed them and took over – however, the last Crochan Queen cast a curse that makes the Western Wastes now exactly that: wastes. So they kind of hate each other). Manon is hunted by some villagers so she kills them all.
  • Celaena and Rowan are still traveling south. In the forest, Celaena spots the Little Folk, all kinds of fairies. They’re not allowed to light a fire because the forest is full of dangerous things.
  • Dorian has to entertain Aedion for a morning and Aedion pushes him into a rosebush. Then Dorian goes to get his hand checked out by a healer and he meets Sorscha, the healer from Fenharrow who has been healing him, Celaena and Chaol all these months they got in trouble. Sorscha has a crush on Dorian.
  • Celaena and Rowan arrive at a fortress on the border of Wendlyn and Maeve’s Fae lands, where the (half blood) demi Fae live: Fae not accepted enough to enter Maeve’s city, Doranelle. Maeve is like, yo Aelin, but Celaena hates that name and refuses to accept that part of herself (my precious). Celaena then learns that her mother had tried to keep her away from Maeve all those years. Maeve then tells Celaena that if she wants answers about the Wyrdkeys, she can come and get them in Doranelle, but she can only enter Doranelle if she is able to use her magic. She has to stay in the fortress, train with Rowan and work in the kitchens. She’s not very happy.
  • Manon meets with her grandmother, the Matron of the Blackbeak clan. Her grandmother is talking to Duke Perrington (he is never named but it’s pretty obvious) who is traveling with two prison wagons (another assumption: he’s probably put Kaltain and Roland in there). The witches get an offer from the king: they have to be his army for a few years, and then they will get to take back their country in the west (since losing magic the witches haven’t been able to fly and reclaim their country). All the Ironteeth witch clans (Blackbeaks, Bluebloods and Yellowlegs) have to travel to the Ferien Gap between the mountains and train – with wyverns. (YAY DRAGONS!)
  • Chaol’s men have gone missing because they’re attending parties that Aedion is throwing. Chaol goes off to find them and punish them.
  • Celaena goes off to work in the kitchens, and she meets Emrys and Luca, the old cook and his help. She calls herself Elentiya (sobs). She then finds out how the Fae look down on demi Fae and how the latter are not allowed to enter Doranelle, ever.
  • The witch clans get together and it’s a mess, because they all hate each other. They hold a memorial service for Baba Yellowlegs (remember? The witch Celaena killed in Crown of Midnight), who was the Matron of the Yellowlegs clan (they are the worst). The witches go from Omega mountain to the Northern Fang, the two mountains on each side of the Ferien Gap, where there are wyverns waiting.
  • Celaena goes for her first training session with Rowan. They go to an abandoned site where Rowan commands her to shift into her Fae form. Celaena can’t, because it’s pretty damn hard, and also she doesn’t want to accept her Fae side. He calls her a coward, like Nehemia did before her death, and Celaena loses it. She refuses his training, and so Rowan takes her to an empty field, where there are wights (whatever those are) waiting to hunt her. She has to cross it, and if she does that successfully, she can go to Doranelle immediately. But something goes terribly wrong, and instead of wights, Celaena meets a creature on the field, the most beautiful man she has ever seen, who makes her relive her most horrible memories (waking up between her parents to find out that they have been murdered), and Celaena breaks down. Rowan saves her, but she has changed completely.
  • Chaol meets with his father, who tells him he has two months before he has to come to Anielle. Dorian has been sparring and gets another injury. He meets Sorscha and asks her about where she came from (a small town in Fenharrow, her parents were murdered). He’s very intrigued.
  • The witches go for a first ride on some wyverns. Manon runs into the Yellowlegs heir, Iskra, who is a huge bitch. Then, the Thirteen get on their wyverns, and are flawless at flying. The witches will now start training to see which clan will lead the others, determined by the War Games later on. Later, Manon’s grandmother tells her that she wants Manon to become Wingleader, leader of all the clans.
  • Celaena is miserable. She goes to work in the kitchens again and meets Emrys’s mate, Malakai (Fae mate for life, they are very primal like that). In the evening, when she goes to get some food, she sees all the demi-Fae in the kitchens, listening to old stories told by Emrys. They ask Celaena to tell a story, but she refuses.
  • Dorian goes to see Sorscha again, and she admits she knows all about their adventures but won’t tell anyone. Dorian gets scared and his magic erupts, and Sorscha takes the blame for ruining all her potions. She also promises she will help him control it.
  • Chaol goes to trail Aedion at his own party, but Aedion isn’t even there. He then trails him outside, until he gets captured. He’s then held hostage in a house by the dude who held him hostage in the previous book, who turns out to be Ren Allsbrook, Lord from Terrasen, and his grandfather, Murtaugh. Aedion is also there, and Chaol tells him that he is controlled by the King of Adarlan (oh, I forgot: Aedion is wearing one of those rings made from Wyrdstone, just like Perrington, Roland, Cain etc.) but Aedion explains that his ring is a fake, because his Fae senses (he’s an Ashryver after all) told him not to trust it. Before they kill him, Chaol tells them that Aelin is alive. Aedion, who has only been a general for the king to not have as many of his people slaughtered, decides to make a deal with Chaol. Information about the magic he has learned for information about Aelin.
  • Rowan is still trying to get Aelin to shift, and eventually, he just bites her and makes her so angry that she does. But then he fucking ruins everything by threatening to lash her if she doesn’t listen to him, and Celaena decides to leave because fuck that. She goes off into the forest and lights a fire (bad move) and then she gets chased by skinwalkers, evil creatures you don’t ever want to meet. Rowan comes to her aid and forces her to shift, because otherwise they would die. They outrun the skinwalkers and then, out of panic and to protect Rowan, she sets them on fire.
  • The witches finally get to choose their own wyverns, and Manon wants Titus, a giant bull. Iskra also wants him, and pushes Manon into the pit when Titus is out. Fuck you, Iskra. Manon tries to escape, but can’t, because Titus is too vicious. Then, however, the baitbeast, chained up for the wyverns to fight, comes to her help and kills Titus for her. Manon claims the baitbeast as her wyvern, and everyone’s like say what. (Manon’s second, Asterin, who is a flawless creature, attacks Iskra and it’s glorious.) Manon’s grandmother is super angry with her for picking a baitbeast, but Manon’s like I will show you. She calls him Abraxos.
  • Chaol and Aedion meet in secret, but Dorian finds them, and hears them talking about Celaena/Aelin. He didn’t know this. Chaol explains that he is trying to keep Dorian safe, but Dorian’s like I hate you bro. Aedion then decides to raise a court for his precious Aelin and I cry.
  • Celaena and Rowan train in the ruins of a temple for Mala, the Sun Goddess, and the sister of Deanna, Keeper of the Moon (and also Mab). They talk about what a bitch Maeve is (Rowan doesn’t say this of course but whatever) and that Maeve wouldn’t send help to Terrasen when they were getting attacked. Then they go to investigate a body that has been found, drained of life with no actual wounds, but with the smell of that creature in the field that day.
  • Chaol and Aedion meet, but this time in Celaena’s apartment that she left to Chaol, the one she bought when she escaped Arobynn Hamel. Aedion tells him about the day magic disappeared in Terrasen, how there were two waves, one from the west and one from the south-west.
  • Sorscha figured that putting more iron in Dorian’s blood would keep his magic contained, because iron beats magic and all that. It turns out her theory works and Dorian kisses her. Sorscha runs away.
  • Manon doesn’t want any of the humans around Abraxos, because he’s scared of them. She gets all of Abraxos’s broken teeth and spikes replaced by iron ones, like hers. The only problem is that his wings aren’t ready for flying.
  • Another body is found in Wendlyn, and Rowan and Celaena go to a human village to ask around, but they won’t help them (Fae are rude and scary) until Celaena starts spending money. Oh, and she has managed the shift by now. Celaena has a flashback to her youth, where her mother called her Fireheart, and where she remembers a conversation between her parents about hiding her from Maeve and sending her off to a magic school to control her powers – she accidentally almost burned down the library of Orynth. Aedion was always by her side.
  • Sorscha realizes she’s ready to risk everything, and goes back to kiss Dorian.
  • Chaol and Aedion go to meet with Murtaugh and Ren, but Ren is attacked by a different group of soldiers from the king – Chaol doesn’t know them. They hide in an opium den while those men hunt them, and manage to escape, but also this is getting dangerous. Turns out Murtaugh and Ren have no home in Rifthold, and Chaol lets them stay in Celaena’s apartment. Murtaugh then explains with the information he has gathered that he things there are three points across the continent, from the Frozen Wastes to the Deserted Peninsula to Rifthold, within which magic has disappeared, a triangle.
  • Manon tries to train Abraxos but he’s a pain in the ass. She realizes the meat the wyverns eat tastes disgusting, unnatural, and takes him out hunting. Then, she tries flying with him, but he panics, and falls off a cliff. However, he saves them and they are flying and glorious and free.
  • During story time, Celaena starts asking for stories about Maeve, to learn as much about her aunt as she can. Then a Fae warrior, and a friend of Rowan’s (he has five other warrior friends who all work for Maeve), Gavriel, arrives at the fortress. Celaena goes to see what they are doing, and Rowan is tattooing things on Gavriel’s body. She tells him how she has no one left but he gets angry and sends her away. Fuck you, Rowan, for breaking my precious. “With each step she took back to her room, that flickering light inside of her guttered. And went out.” Sobbing forever.
  • She lashes out at Emrys, Malakai and Luca, and walks out alone. Emrys tells Rowan he’s an asshole for pushing her down when she’s trying to get up, and explains that Celaena’s mother, Evalin, has worked in the kitchens with him twenty-five years ago, and that obviously he knows who Celaena is. Celaena wanders the forest and admits to herself that she has been lost for ten years and I am fucking weeping.
  • Rowan makes it up to her, sort of, and gets her for a different training exercise where he ties Luca to a chair in the middle of a frozen lake inside a mountain and she has to save him without letting him drown. She does, but then they find out there’s a gigantic monster inside the cave. Rowan throws a sword that he finds at Celaena, and they only barely escape. She also finds a ring in the sword. When they get back to the fortress, Emrys tells them the story of a wounded man who came across the creature, and learned that it was kept in that cave by the warrior who had that sword and ring.
  • Celaena gets angry at Rowan for putting Luca in danger, because it takes her all back to Nehemia orchestrating her own death. She accidentally burns his wrists with her magic when fighting, and later, she goes to bring him salve. Rowan then tells her about how his mate died, a woman who was pregnant while he was off fighting. He has been broken ever since. Since Rowan now understands Celaena more, they decide to try to get out of the darkness together. And I weep again.
  • PART TWO HEIR OF FIRE AHAHAH I’M FINE
  • Ren and Aedion talk about all they have lost and how they are both worried their people won’t accept them after all that they’ve done. Well, Ren says it, Aedion just thinks it. Chaol and Aedion go out drinking to gather more information, and they find a soldier named Jensen, who has been to Noll, the farthest point on the Deserted Peninsula, where he had to protect a tower just like the clocktower in the courtyard of the glass castle. He also says that his men slowly went insane from being around the tower too long, and that there was a similar tower in the north, in Amaroth in the Frozen Wastes, forming the perfect triangle across Erilea.
  • Manon and her Thirteen get to training and flying, but Abraxos’s wings still aren’t good enough. So Manon goes off to find the Stygian spiders in the Ruhnn Mountains, and steals spidersilk from them to patch up his wings. Then, when Abraxos’s wings are improved with the flawless spidersilk, she tries to get him to make the cross across the Gap, but he refuses, and fucking Iskra whips him. Manon attacks Iskra, but Sorrel and Asterin, her Third and Second, get her away. Manon puts Abraxos in the most miserable hole in the mountain until he will listen to her. The Bluebloods heir, Petrah, offers Abraxos some meat she caught outside the mountain, but Manon won’t accept it.
  • Celaena is redoing Rowan’s tattoo, since she burned parts of it. He tells him about his parents, who died, and she tells him about hers, and about Aedion. She also tells him that she doesn’t want her crown because of the weight of it, and because she doesn’t think she is worthy. Celaena and Rowan are now officially friends.
  • Dorian and Sorscha are happily in lurve. Chaol comes to ask Dorian for help, but Dorian confronts him with his refusal to take a side, and how Chaol is a hypocrite for refusing to accept Celaena for who she is, and Dorian, for that matter. Chaol leaves. He has a lot to learn, but Dorian is flawless.
  • Chaol and Aedion go to the apartment, to wait for Murtaugh, who was on a mission to Skull’s Bay. He learned that there had been a creature with a black collar there, that scared the shit out of Captain Rolfe’s pirates. He also learned that the general in charge of that area, General Narrok, has left with his fleet, to Wendlyn. Oh fuck.
  • Aedion also confronts Chaol, and asks which side he is on. Chaol says that he is on Dorian’s side only. Aedion is like, yo, fuck you, you have no reason to be afraid, my life has been hell and you are a child. Or something like that.
  • It is Beltane, the celebration of spring, and Celaena is put in charge of lighting and controlling three giant fires at a party for the demi-Fae. She’s awesome at it at first, but then she burns herself out, and nearly actually burns herself completely. Rowan and two Fae women put her in a bath and try everything to cool her down. Eventually, she calms enough to not cook the water around her. Then, Rowan sees the scars on her back for the first time, the scars from Endovier, and he gets so angry that he has to walk out. Maeve had never told him. He eventually calms down enough to return, and gets this territorial need to protect her from everything, so he picks her up from her room and lets her sleep in his bed, not for just one night but for their entire stay. She then tells him about Endovier and how she got out.
  • Rowan keeps her in bed, and he tells her about how protective Fae are. He also tells her about the existence of carranam, Fae who are bonded and who can use each other’s magic. Celaena tells her she wants to keep her scars as a reminder, and that she will eventually free all the slaves in the salt mines. But she can’t take her crown, because if she does, she will take apart the world.
  • It’s Celaena’s birthday and she turns nineteen. So young. Poor baby. Rowan gets her chocolate, which is awesome.
  • Then they turn their lessons into lessons to shape her magic, and she manages to produce a fire shield. Celaena also went to practice on her own.
  • Manon still hasn’t made the Crossing with Abraxos, but her grandmother forces her to. Abraxos listens to her grandmother being an asshole to Manon and he gets very protective, and ready to prove a point, and so they finally fly and they are glorious.
  • Rowan finds out Celaena has been practicing on her own and he’s impressed. There’s another body and they try to figure out what’s going on, but they can’t get anywhere. Celaena then tells Rowan about the creature in the library in the previous book, which has the same scent as on the murder scene. Except that one wasn’t working properly, and these killers must have been the perfected versions.
  • They return to the site and find a trail to the sea, where they spot a cave filled with two hundred mortal soldiers, three monsters like the creature in the library and the creature in the fields, and General Narrok, also with a magic collar. Rowan flies in in his falcon form and finds out that they are planning on attacking the fortress and attacking the demi-Fae. Then they try to leave, but one of the creatures finds them and follows them, the creature Celaena met in the field that day. They split up and try to fight him, but he sneaks up on her, and they have to run for their lives. Celaena has a brilliant/stupid plan to lead the skinwalkers to her by lighting a fire and they let the skinwalkers run into the creature to let them tear each other apart.
  • The fortress gets ready to fight. They ask for help from Wendlyn (not Maeve because she would be like nah and also command Rowan to come back) but Wendlyn gets attacked in the north by Adarlan and can’t help them.
  • Then the most horrific news reaches the fortress: after the slave uprising in Calaculla after Nehemia’s death, the king send his army to kill every last one of the slaves in both Calaculla and Endovier. Fucking hell. Celaena leaves and unleashes her fire on the magic wall around the fortress, because she’s completely broken.
  • Chaol is preparing to leave for Anielle but he still wants to have Dorian safe when he leaves. The king tells his council, including Chaol and Dorian, that he killed all the slaves. Dorian wants Sorscha to get out of the castle and to safety, but she refuses to leave. Aedion is mourning. And then THE ORCHESTRA PLAYS THE SONGS OF EYLLWE AND FENHARROW AND MELISANDE AND TERRASEN AND ADARLAN AND I FUCKING CRY THIS IS THE WORST. The king kills them all. I want to stab him.
  • CELAENA WILL FOLLOW ROWAN TO WHATEVER END.
  • They continue to set traps around the fortress. And then the monsters arrive, cloaked in darkness to pull people in and make them go insane. The army is nowhere in sight, it’s just the three creatures. Celaena, ignoring Rowan’s orders, slips outside the magic barrier and puts up a wall of fire around the fortress. Rowan goes inside, where it turns out the soldiers have snuck in through a hidden passage because they have been betrayed by Bas, one of the scout leaders.
  • Celaena finds out the three dark creatures are actually the Valg princes, the ones who forged the three Wyrdkeys out of the Wyrdgate all those ages ago. They are surprised to see that Celaena has Goldryn, the ruby sword from the mountain cave, which belonged to Athril (Maeve’s ex-lover) and Brannon Galathynius. Celaena keeps fighting them but they nearly overpower her (and cut off her hair in the process hdu). Then, Rowan’s “friends” arrive, the five other warriors working for Maeve, but none of them help her as they race inside to help Rowan, except for Gavriel, who she saw once before. They take over from Rowan to kill all the soldiers, but then as Rowan goes outside, Celaena is swallowed by the darkness. His friends keep him from going to her because he would also go insane. The Valg love Celaena’s misery and keep her alive, going through her horrible memories over and over again.
  • Another flashback. Aelin is a child and waiting at her palace in Orynth when the King of Adarlan comes to visit with Dorian. At dinner, the king tries to push into Aelin’s brain and she nearly burns out, going crazy from the pain. Of course, no one knows that it was the king who did this, and Aelin and her parents, Rhoe and Evalin, travel to their summer home to get rest for Aelin. Her mother gives her to Amulet of Orynth, the heirloom from Brannon to protect her. That night, her parents were murdered, and Aelin woke up covered in their blood. She was protected by Lady Marion, her mother’s best friend and handmaiden, who made her flee and sacrificed herself (even though she still had a husband, Cal Lochan, and a daughter, Elide), being butchered by the creature who slaughtered Aelin’s parents. Aelin ran away, but a bridge had been cut, and she fell into the river, the same river where Arobynn Hamel found her all those years ago.
  • It was Lady Marion’s sacrifice that broke Aelin completely, because it was all in vain. She sacrificed herself and left her daughter Elide and husband Cal for nothing, because Aelin never became queen. But then, the faces of all the people she loved appeared to Celaena, and they gave her the strength to rise again. And set the Valg on fire. She burns two of them immediately, but her power is so weak, she can’t kill Narrok and the last one. Rowan comes to the rescue, and offers her his own magic (they are carranam, in case you didn’t know) and she burns them all. Right before he dies, Narrok shows her a flash of the future, of what it could very well become now that she has taken up her rightful identity.
  • Chaol goes to tell Dorian about what he discovered about the king’s magic, and also to let him know that he has picked a side: Dorian’s. Obviously. They go to test out Chaol’s theory which inside three crystals and a bowl of water in the middle. Dorian uses his magic to connect the crystals and the water freezes, and when he knocks over one of the crystals, it unfreezes. So that’s how the king froze magic. The triangle of magic freezing crosses to Morath, where Duke Perrington lives and where he brought Roland and Kaltain, and the Ferien Gap, where people keep hearing wings. (Hi wyverns.)
  • Celaena finally gets to get out of bed after Rowan let her sleep for days, and they go to a forest pool. Then she realizes where the final Wyrdkey is: in the Amulet of Orynth, which protected her and her family for ages. Brannon got it from the site of Mala’s temple. And when Arobynn found her, he had taken the Amulet from her. Rowan asks her what’s up but she won’t tell him because he’s bound to Maeve by bloodoath. Then she tells him her entire life’s story, and also manages to conjure one tiny water drop, a tiny drop of water affinity being in her blood from Mab’s line, her mother’s line (the fire came from Brannon Galathynius). Then they get ready to travel to Doranelle, because she has gained Rowan’s approval. She says goodbye to the demi-Fae, and promises them they will always have a home in Terrasen.
  • Murtaugh gets ready to travel to Suria, but then he finds out that Aelin is alive. The news of her battle with the Valg has traveled quickly, and now everyone in Adarlan knows Aelin Galathynius is alive. Murtaugh travels north and sends word to all the countries, telling them to hold on, because Aelin will come home. Ren stays in Rifthold to work from there. Oh, and the king is outraged.
  • Celaena and Rowan travel to Doranelle, a city built entirely of stone. When they enter the palace, Maeve asks her to show her power, but Celaena’s like, nah I need answers first. Maeve tells her the Wyrdkeys cannot be destroyed, only put back in the gate, and no one knows how to do that. Then she tells Celaena about the Valg, which are many different creatures, and about the Valg princes, who take over different bodies. She also tells Celaena that Brannon wasn’t royal-born, but loved by Mala the Sun Goddess. The mark on Celaena’s brow, that occasionally shows (like during the battle with Cain) is a bastard’s mark. Burning them or cutting of the heads of the Valg are the only ways to kill them.
  • Back to the keys: if the King of Adarlan would have all three, he would be invincible. Maeve knows Celaena knows where the last Wyrdkey is, but refuses to tell Maeve. Maeve then tortures Rowan to trick her into telling her, but Rowan tells her not to. “AND THEN CELAENA SET THE WORLD ON FIRE.” She lit up the entire city with her fire, although she didn’t burn anyone. Celaena then tells Maeve what she has figured out, through the stories told by Emrys: that Maeve didn’t give the keys to Brannon, but wanted them for herself. Her beloved Athril fought against her and she killed him. Brannon took the keys and burned every last trace so she wouldn’t find him. He hid one of the keys in his heirloom so Maeve wouldn’t find them.
  • Then Celaena shows Maeve the memory that Narrok gave her, a flash of a future in which she was queen. She also shows Maeve the ring she found in the sword, the sword that belonged to Athril, and the ring that would have belong to Maeve one day. She exchanges the ring for Rowan’s freedom. Rowan then binds himself to Celaena.
  • They escape Doranelle, and Celaena lets Rowan tattoo the stories of her parents and uncle, of Lady Marion, of her country and her people, of Nehemia, and of Sam on the scars on her back. She also finally mourns them, and prays that they are safe, and sings the song of her household.
  • During the War Games, in which each witch clan has to protect their own egg and steal the others, asshole Iskra lets her wyvern kill the wyvern of Petrah, the Bluebloods heir. The wyvern dies, but Manon and Abraxos manage to save Petrah. Manon knows she was born without a heart and soul, but she saw how Petrah’s wyvern tried to save her, and so she helped.
  • They still win the Games, and Manon is proclaimed Wing Leader. Her grandmother is furious at her for saving Petrah, and as punishment, she makes her kill a Crochan witch that they have been holding captive. The Crochan witch, with her blood red cloak, tells Manon that she pities her, and that she is not born but made a monster. Manon kills her, because of her grandmother, but she regrets it.
  • Chaol and Aedion try to figure out what to do. Chaol realizes that while Celaena would always pick him, Aelin would not. But then the king summons Aedion, Chaol, Dorian and Sorscha. Dorian tries to get Sorscha out of the castle, but her asshole coworker, Amithy, has reported them. The king tries to find out what Chaol and Aedion have been doing, and Dorian claims he doesn’t know. The king asks them who the traitor in the castle was, and Chaol is about to take the blame when Aedion sacrifices himself. The king locks him up, but doesn’t kill him, because he wants to use him as a trap for Aelin.
  • The king then tells them that Sorscha is the true traitor. She kept sending letters to her “friend”, who later turns out to be Ren, telling him of the king’s every move. She never told him about Dorian, though. Amithy has found one of her letters and reported her to the king. Sorscha confesses to everything, hoping that by doing so, she will spare Dorian’s life (she does). The king has her beheaded.
  • Then Chaol decides to do something, and he tells the king he is quitting, and that he will not go to Anielle, because he will only serve Dorian. The king has his men shoot him, but that is Dorian’s breaking point, the line he will not cross, and Dorian’s magic erupts. Dorian tells Chaol to flee, and he does, but not before telling him he loves him, and I weep.
  • The king overpowers Dorian with his magic and puts one of the black collars around his neck. Fucking hell.
  • Chaol gets Fleetfoot, Celaena’s dog, and flees through the tunnels in her room, but not before telling Mort (the doorknocker) where he will be and getting Damaris (Gavin’s sword) from the tomb. He goes to Celaena’s apartment and together with Ren, he decides to free Aedion and Dorian both.
  • Manon and the Thirteen are sent to Morath to serve the duke. The rest of the witches stay in the Ferien Gap.
  • Chaol dumps his Captain of the Guard sword in the Avery river.

how did it end?

Celaena prepares to go back to Adarlan, to start her fight. Rowan can’t come with her because since magic is still frozen, he would either be a giant Fae warrior (kind of suspicious) or a falcon (kind of annoying). They say goodbye and I cry again. Celaena then takes on her real identity. “She was Aelin Ashryver Galathynius, and she would not be afraid.”

 

Other recaps for this series:

Comments:

  • Maren says:

    Thank you so much for this! Queen of Shadows is coming out in two days, and I thought I’d have to re-read Heir of Fire because I forgot so much of what happened! Thanks so much, you rock!!

  • Heather says:

    This summary just made me want to read Heir of fire again, it was so freaking awesome!

    • Mel says:

      SAME HERE! I was coming into this post thinking “I’ll just read this recap then go straight to Queen of Shadows” But now I REALLy want to re-read Heir of Fire, because this post was so good!

  • Jason says:

    So stoll fuzzy on one thing, where are all the 3 wyrdkeys at this time?

    • Judith says:

      At this point, the King of Adarlan has two of the keys, and Celaena has figured out that the third one is in the Amulet of Orynth. The Amulet has been taken from her by Arobynn Hamel when he found her.

  • Amy says:

    So helpful! My copies of 1-3 are at my mum’s and I couldn’t remember how it ended. I can finally read Queen of Shadows now! :’) x

  • Madeline says:

    OMG thankyou so much! This is so so helpful

  • Teagan says:

    You guys are a life saver! Your recaps of books alway come in handy. THANK YOU so much!!

  • Pranusha says:

    Thank you! I can finally read Queen of Shadows now…

  • Amanda says:

    Thank you so much!! I’m glad for new recaps again!

  • Kalia says:

    Thanks for the summaries. I’m about to start QOS. I’ve been hoping Sarah would include a lineage chart in one of the books, because I’m still kind of confused on Aelin’s fae heritage. I think Brannon is related to her on her father’s side, which would make her and Dorian distant relatives by marriage. I also thought that Mab was related to her on her mother’s side, but since her mother lived in the demi-fae settlement for ten years, maybe I’m wrong.

  • Laurel says:

    Thanks for this! I hope you can find time to recap Queen of Shadows!

  • PoppyJ says:

    Oh my gosh this was brilliant!!!!!!!! You’re amazing thank you!

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