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Heir to the Shadows (Black Jewels, Book 2) Kindle Edition
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“Bishop seems to delight in turning fantasy conventions on their heads...still darkly opulent, often exotic.”—Locus
“The fabulous talent of Anne Bishop is showcased in Heir to the Shadows....Ms. Bishop’s striking magical concepts and powerful images are wonderfully leavened with unexpected dash and humor, creating an irresistible treat for fantasy fans.”—RT Book Reviews
“Heir to the Shadows isn’t as dark as its predecessor...All the other elements that made the first book such a gripping read are present: vivid and sympathetic characters, a fascinating and fully-realized magical system...lavish and sensuous descriptions, and interesting world building that turns traditional gender roles and concepts of dominance and submission on their heads....It’s a terrific read, and I highly recommend both it and Daughter of the Blood.”—SF Site
“Daemon, Lucivar, and Saetan ooze more sex appeal than any three fictional characters created in a very long time.”—The Romance Reader
About the Author
- ASIN : B000UWAEWC
- Publisher : Roc; Reprint edition (August 7, 2007)
- Publication date : August 7, 2007
- Language : English
- File size : 2258 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 500 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #16,077 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The Black Jewels series is dark fantasy, characters in this do not have easy goes at things and suffer for years on end. Daughter of blood hit so many of my hot buttons in it, rape, incest, torture, human trafficking, pedophilia and slavery. It was dark and disturbing and I couldn’t look away or put it down. Heir to the Shadows picks up two years after the events of the first book of the series. This is still dark but we have moved away from some of the sexual darkness of the first book and we learn that The Blood have other ways to be horrible to each other.
Jaenelle remains in a coma in Saetan’s care two years after the events of Daughter of Blood. Daemon at least was able to tie her back to her body but it has left him vulnerable with cracks of his own and drained. Because he doesn’t remember the events of that horrible night it is all twisted in his head and he isn’t sure if he helped or harmed the girl that will one day become the woman he is meant to be with.
This worldbuilding in this is really fantastic. There are lands in the physical realm, magical realm and the realm of death. The tie in between all of the places and how they interact with one another is really amazing and I like the idea of Saetan as a Guardian of the world. The Kindred are magical creatures who as legend have it were once normal wolves, dogs, cats, unicorns etc. but a dragon flew over the land dropping her scales and giving the world her magic. Humans that caught a scale became witches, animals became more sentient with magic of their own and became known as the Kindred. I love how much depth there is to the worlds.
While sometimes this is a little slow in places I can’t say I was ever bored, I really couldn’t put this down for the most part as I followed Jaenelle on her journey from the lowest part of her life, to living while blocking the trauma of her past to the final acceptance of all of it on her journey into the future.
***“It is easier to kill than to heal. It is easier to destroy than to preserve. It is easier to tear down than to build. Those who feed on destructive emotions and ambitions and deny the responsibilities that are the price of wielding power can bring down everything you care for and would protect. Be on guard, always.” ***
There are so many great characters and so many terrible characters I love to hate that I was captivated by the entire tale. Plus seeing Saetan with a household of teenage witches as he tries to mentor Jaenelle was pretty hilarious. I’m not sure he knew what he was getting into when that little girl showed up on his doorstep seeking magic lessons.
***“I met your daughter recently. I asked her if she found it difficult living with your temper. She looked genuinely baffled, and said, ‘What temper?’”
Saetan stared at her for a moment, then the anger drained away. He rubbed the back of his neck, and said dryly, “Jaenelle has a unique way of looking at a great many things.” ***
Anne Bishop has woven an intricate tale in a cruel world and I just can’t get enough of it. With the addition of the Kindred, Lucivar finding his place and Daemon’s journey this was a full tale that left me wanting more.
I can’t wait to see what our not so little Jaenelle will do now that she has made her choice.
Jaenelle is under the guardianship of Saetan who is the High Lord of Hell. He petitioned the Council for that right but now has to deal with a Dark Council that is being subtly manipulated by an old enemy of his who will do anything to bring him down and gain control of Jaenelle.
Meanwhile, Jaenelle is healing and learning and gathering her friends together. She is also driving Saetan crazy with her enthusiastic actions. Whatever she does though is done from a kind heart and a desire to do well by her people. She doesn't want to form her own court which is the fate of most young Queens once they embrace their jewels. She doesn't want control over other people's lives.
Jaenelle is a very, very powerful witch, black widow, and queen who controls the most powerful black jewels. She does things no other witches or magic users know how to do. However, she has trouble with the basic things that most young magic users learn to do first.
I loved watching Jaenelle grow into herself and her powers. I loved her relationship with her guardian Saetan. This is a well-crafted world filled with interesting creatures.
Once again the story will leave you astounded at the authors ability to conceive this world. Another aspect of the story that I loved was the moments of humor. The characters who love Jaenelle and each other are often floored at some of the situations that come about while they are trying to understand her.
And because I am me, the editing is pretty awesome. If you look hard enough, you can always find mistakes as everyone involved in a book is human, but these were minor and rarely if ever knocked me out of the story enough to notice them.
Top reviews from other countries
And then he does.
And then we get introduced to a metric ton of characters who don't do much, we have a lot of cozy, heart-warming interactions, and then Jaenelle becomes Queen.
Jaenelle is the worst Mary Sue I've ever read (ie. a too-perfect character who usually serves as a stand-in for the author to have a adventures that are more about the wish fulfillment than storytelling).
It really is ham-fisted stuff. Bishop thinks adding a tick is the same as characterisation, so Jaenelle will "fluff her hair" (whatever that means- is she brushing it? Teasing it?) every couple of scenes, or swear in some untranslated language in such a way to make a Warlord blush. She also has a twilight voice; Bishop never been engages the senses enough to give us an idea of what this may sound like: an adolescent girl who smokes way too much?
There is such an affection for this series that I wanted to read it, but mostly found myself regretting what a wasted opportunity for subversive storytelling it could have been. Instead of a beefy warrior saving the day, we could have had a gentle girl figuring herself out come to our rescue. But in Jaenelle, and her one dimensional entourage, we get an effortlessly perfect character who will suddenly just fill a room with "dark power" and obliterate her enemies. One is mostly left wondering by the end, "why didn't she just blast them all at the beginning?"
Following immediately after the horrendous events in book one; with Jaenelle's life in the balance and Daemon's fall into madness, Saetan takes Jaenelle to Hell to heal. It takes two years for her to awaken from her coma and suffering amnesia; she not only forgets her rape but also her beloved Daemon. Daemon in turn has fallen into the Twisted Kingdom (madness) and believes Jaenelle to be dead. In fact it takes a further thirteen years before this couple are again (physically) re-united; an event which doesn't take place until book 3 "Queen of the Darkness".
From the first page this is a wonderful, magical and poignant journey as Jaenelle reaches maturity and becomes the most powerful Queen in history. Yet she refuses to set up her own court; establishing complete dominion over those she rules until Terreille Queens begin staking claims in Kaeleer the Shadow Realm. Unfortunately for Terreille these claims include the slaughter of Jaenelle's friends the Kindred; unacknowledged Blood animals able to wield the power of a jewel. With the slaughter of the unicorns Jaenelle takes her place as the Queen of Darkness and selects her First Circle; other powerful Queens and Warlords both human and not; loyal friends who will aid in her coming battle against Heketah, Dorothea and their followers.
Rather than continuing to explore the relationship between Jaenelle and Daemon, AB takes a side step; concentrating instead on Lucivar, the Queens and Warlords of Kaeleer and the Kindred. At the risk of sounding weird, I have to say I missed the powerful presence of Daemon "The Sadist"; as trapped in the Twisted Kingdom he fails to interact with many people at all (my only disappointment with this book but not enough to merit losing a star). I do however concede the introduction of those characters only briefly mentioned in book one; namely the young Warlords and future Queens of the legendary lands of Kaeleer and the havoc they create when they all move in with "Uncle Saetan" in order to be with Jaenelle more than made up for the lack of interaction with Daemon.
The dark mix of gothic, paranormal and fantasy found in "Heir to the Shadows" works extremely well and with one short sentence, the talented AB's vivid imagery can have her reader in tears. This book is savagely dark in places and certainly a tale not fit for a young audience; however AB's subtle humour can also be found abundantly throughout the pages; something definitely required after a chapter featuring gruesome torture or darkly erotic encounters. I would sincerely advise any newcomer to this author's works to read "Daughter of the Blood" before embarking on this adventure, and once finished, I guarantee you'll be eagerly opening the pages of book 3 "Queen of the Darkness".