The first novel in a planned trilogy, The Heir of Night is about a princess named Malian who is the Heir to the House of Night, and it’s her mission to fight against the Darkswarm who have been terrorizing the lands of her people for quite some time. The people thought they were banished, but it turns out they weren’t, and she has to fight against them by finding legendary artifacts that are buried across different lands. Along the way, she discovers her love for her best friend, Kalan, who is Heir to the House of Blood.
I will preface my review by saying that although The Heir of Night is marketed toward the adult fantasy market, it will appeal more to teens, especially lovers of Tamora Pierce’s books who will forge an instant connection with the teenage main character, Malian, who is the Heir of Night.
This novel has a strong opening with evocative, lush descriptions that remind me of the Dragonlance series. In this universe, with interesting world-building, there are different Heirs and Houses, so if you like that sort of thing, you’ll enjoy this book. Malian, the Heir of Night, has a friend Kalan, who is from the House of Blood, whose members are traditionally warriors.
The book mostly chronicles their journeys together, although they do get split up at one point. The alternating points of view between Malian, Kalan, and some of the other characters make for an interesting change in terms of the pacing.
From a magic standpoint, Malian’s attacks came a bit too easily for my taste, and I didn’t feel suspense or any kind of struggle in what’s meant to be a pivotal scene in the first third of the book when Malian gets sucked into another realm. And though the dialogue is supposed to sound arcane, it comes off as too stilted at times.