Sunday, 12 December 2010

One for 2011? ‘The Heir of Night’ – Helen Lowe (Orbit)

It’s that time of year again where publishers very kindly send me advance copies of books that are due out early next year. As is more often than not the case though, I’m too busy trying to work my way through the ‘2010 list’ first (and publishers aren’t keen on you reviewing advance copies too early) so... I thought it might be fun to post details of these upcoming releases and see if any of them take your fancy. Up today is Helen Lowe’s ‘The Heir of Night’, a March 2011 release from Orbit. Here’s the blurb...

The violence of an age-old war casts a long shadow. It falls on a world where mercy is weakness and conflict is a way of life. Young Malian is being trained to rule. Her people garrison the mountain range known as the Wall of Night against an ancient enemy, keeping a tide of shadow from the rest of their world. Malian is expected to uphold this tradition, yet she's known little of real danger until the enemy launches a direct attack upon her fortress home. In the darkest part of the night, the Keep of Winds becomes a bloodbath. Women and children, warriors and priests, are slain by creatures with twisted magic flowing in their veins. And as the castle wakes to chaos, Malian flees deep into the Old Keep, her life at stake. Then when the danger is greatest, her own hidden magic flares into life. But this untapped potential is a two-edged blade. If she accepts its power, she must prepare to pay the price.

I seem to be getting back into fantasy more and more so can see myself picking this one up closer to the release date. Having said that though, I know you shouldn’t pin everything on the blurb but it’s not exactly filling me with confidence. A young ruler about to lose her people but gain powers that she previously knew nothing about? A mountain range with an enemy on the other side? Sounds like awfully familiar territory to me...
Like I said, I’ll probably pick this one up but I think Lowe is going to have to pull something pretty special out of the hat if she wants to steer ‘The Heir of Night’ away from the ‘run of the mill crop’ that it sounds like it could be a part of. What do you think?

5 comments:

xalwaysdreamx said...

Yeah, the synopsis is sounding a big cliched! If I had picked up that book from the bookstore and read the back, I would probably just roll my eyes and put it back :|

--Sharry

bascule said...

Put it on my "Maybe" wishlist on Amazon. Which means I will probably look out for it in a "giveaway" or order it from the library.

Either way I do intend to read it there is just about enough there to interest me. I don't read too much fantasy so aint too jaded yet.

The Fantasizer said...

It might just be good, I've found found that blurbs of most good books are underwhelming but this one could go either way, if its well written it might just be great otherwise well...

Coupiac said...

I ordered it two days ago on Amazon. After some hesitation the praise from Robin Hobb decided me to give it a try. The first pages are free on the internet and seem well-written enough.

Anonymous said...

Well I have read it and I loved it. Yes there are some well known fantasy tropes present in the story, but the reason these tropes are well known is that when they are done well, they can make for a compelling story.

The Heir of Night is one of these. If you try it you won't be disappointed