Lidan Tolak is the fiercest of her father’s daughters; more than capable of one day leading her clan. But caught between her warring parents, Lidan’s world begins to unravel when another of her father’s wives falls pregnant. Before she has time to consider the threat of a brother, a bloody swathe is cut through the heart of the clan and Lidan must fight, not only to prove her worth, but simply to survive.
Ranoth Olseta wants nothing more than to be a worthy successor to his father’s throne. When his home is threatened by the aggressive Woaden Empire, Ran becomes his city’s saviour, but powers within him are revealed by the enemy and he is condemned to death. Confused and betrayed, Ran is forced to flee his homeland, vowing to reclaim what he has lost, even if it kills him.
Facing an unknown future, and battling forces both familiar and foreign, can Lidan and Ran overcome the odds threatening to drag them into inescapable darkness?
We all have ghosts who walk in our shadows, Ran. Just happens some are louder than others
Thanks to the author Alicia Wanstall-Burke for an ARC of Blood of Heirs in exchange for an honest review. Receiving a copy of this debut fantasy novel did not influence my thoughts or opinions.
Honestly, I did not have much expectations when I started this series but OMG, I have to say, this story wow-ed me. This may be the best debut novel that I have read thus far.
We follow 2 main characters in this story: Lidan and Ran. Lidan is the First Daughter of a clan chief who is eager to prove to his father that she is worthy and suitable to be his heir, despite the fact that she is a daughter and not a son. Ran, on the other hand, is the son of a Duke who is also eager to prove his worth to his father but then accidentally acquired some magical powers which turns him into an outcast. Both Lidan and Ran face different challenges in proving themselves and their characterization is so well done by Wanstall-Burke! Their emotions and mental state were so intense and perfectly tapped into by Wanstall-Burke and I literally could feel them. Wanstall-Burke perfectly demonstrates how to write a character driven fantasy series.
The worldbuilding is also perfectly done. Both Lidan and Ran are in different parts of the world: Lidan’s point of view took place in the South whereby there are different clans controlling different parts of the Southern lands. Ran’s point of view on the other hand took place in the North (The Disputed Territory) whereby his country, Orthia, was tasked to defend the territory from the Woaden Empire. The social structure and culture of both the Southern and Northern lands are duly explained in this story. Simple sentences were used by Wanstall-Burke and thus it is very easy to imagine and get into the world of both characters.
This book is definitely a page turner. Its a little bit dark, its easy to follow and most important of all, its not predictable. The cliffhanger at the epilogue just instantly made me picked up and started reading the second book in the series. No doubt, a strong 4.5/5 star rating!