Monday, October 26, 2015

Arrow's flight by Mercedes Lackey

Arrow's flight is the second book in The Herald's of Valdemar series so this review contains ***SPOILERS*** about what happens in Arrow's of the Queen.  The books can be read independently but you will enjoy the series more if you read it in order.

Despite people's plans to the contrary Talia has not only survived her student years at the Collegium, she has thrived.  Her quiet ways and willingness to support her friends has not gone unnoticed, and with her internship coming up she is one step closer to becoming a full Herald and stepping fully into her role as Queen's Own Herald.  Talia has heard rumours that she will be paired up with Kris, but for some strange reason her heart thrums when her thoughts turn to his best friend Dirk instead.  While preparing to go out into the field Talia can't help but get the feeling that something is going on, she keeps getting strange looks from people and her already fragile nerves are starting to fray.  She may have come a long way from the shy and abused Holderkin child that appeared at the Collegium on Rolan's back, clueless about what she was doing there, but deep inside she still has doubts about herself and her abilities.

While being on the road brings her one step closer to fulfilling her destiny it also brings her into contact with people who have never met her - yet they have heard some of the rumours that Kris tells her about, rumours that she uses her ability to manipulate people into doing what she wants.  His warning about the rumours is delivered in a matter of fact way, but that just makes the blow harder and makes her doubt herself even more.  Soon Talia is sucked into a vicious cycle of self doubt and eroding control which eventually leads to a complete and utter collapse of her control of her gift while they are on Circuit.  It will be up to Talia, with support from Kris and the Companions to gain control of her gift because if she doesn't there are powers out there that would crush her and destroy her to protect the innocents around her.  In the midst of all this doubt and lack of control she has to come into her own as a Herald so she can support the Queen in some very dark times ahead.

Arrow's flight is the second book in a trilogy that introduces readers to the world of Valdemar and Talia who is one of the pivotal figures of the books set in this time period.  After finishing Arrow's of the Queen I jumped straight into Arrow's flight - and lost myself for a few ours in the book where Talia discovers more about herself and truly comes into possession of her abilities as well as growing into her adult role.  This is very much the true coming of age for Talia, she has grown into a young woman but it is while she is on her Circuit that she learns what her ability truly means and what it truly means to be a Herald.  There are some truly hairy moments in this part of the story and through those moments we learn more about Talia and her world - particularly the Heralds who have come before.

Talia has had a difficult life and the relationship that develops between Kris and Talia is both sweet and bitter - the sign of a true brother and sister relationship.  Even though I have read this series several times there were moments when I was holding my breath and moments when I laughed.  This middle book has some of the adult themes that make it more suitable for older teen readers, but mature teens shouldn't have any real problems as the themes are well handled and are not gratuitous in their violence or portrayal.  If you enjoyed Arrow's of the Queen then you will find a lot to like here, it may be a middle book but it embraces that role and focuses on a pivotal part in Talia's development and sets the scene beautifully for the events of Arrow's fall.

If you like this book then try:

Reviewed by Brilla

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