Title: Child of the Prophecy
Author: Juliet Marillier
Length: 528 pages
Genre: Fantasy, Historical Fiction
My Rating: 5/5
So…I’ll be the first to confess that I’ve had a love-hate relationship with this book throughout the entirety of the time I’ve been in love with the Sevenwaters Series by Juliet Marillier (which is at least a decade). Because I’m rereading through the series so that I can end it with the newly released Flame of Sevenwaters, I really wanted to get through Child of the Prophecy (Book #3) again. Previously, I had been a little disappointed in this (once-thought) ending of the trilogy (which has now turned into a 6 book series). However, this time–the third time around–I am IN LOVE. I don’t know what changed between the previous two times I read this book and my most recent time, but the fact remains the same that I ADORE CotP and cannot give it anything less than 5 shining stars!
This time around, I paid much more attention to the actual words of the story. I mean the literal words on the page. This is a masterpiece, folks. Marillier’s prose is GORGEOUS. I mean…her sentences were just dripping awesome in this book. As well, Fainne is a much more complex and troubled heroine, which I (like many others) agree makes her an extremely interesting character. The love story here is subtle and underscored by the overwhelming and near-tragic plot and I think this is a pleasant change. Don’t get me wrong, though. My favorite Marillier book is Daughter of the Forest followed closely by Son of the Shadows. Still, I think I misjudged Child of the Prophecy in my previous reads. I think I went in expecting Fainne to be more like Sorcha or Liadan. I was hoping for a sweeping love story that would leave me breathless, but Fainne and her man have a less obvious story and one that I can relate more easily to.
Because I don’t believe in reinventing the wheel (i.e. summarizing), here is the book’s blurb:
Magic is fading… and the ways of Man are driving the Old Ones to the West, beyond the ken of humankind. The ancient groves are being destroyed, and if nothing is done, Ireland will lose its essential mystic core.
The prophecies of long ago have foretold a way to prevent this horror, and it is the Sevenwaters clan that the spirits of Eire look to for salvation. They are a family bound into the lifeblood of the land, and their promise to preserve the magic has been the cause of great joy to them… as well as great sorrow.
It is up to Fianne, daughter of Niamh, the lost sister of Sevenwaters, to solve the riddles of power. A shy child of a reclusive sorcerer, she finds that her way is hard: She is the granddaughter of the wicked sorceress Oonagh, who has emerged from the shadows and seeks to destroy all that Sevenwaters has striven for. Oonagh will use Fianne most cruelly to accomplish her ends, and stops at nothing to see her will done.
Will Fianne be strong enough to battle this evil and save those she has come to love?
If you have previously read this book and come away feeling less than satisfied, my advice is definitely to REREAD it!! Seriously this is my third time reading and it is only now that I feel I can fully appreciate Fainne’s struggle, her love story, and the broad-sweeping consequences of her actions. I respect Marillier for writing this book and for breaking out of her mold a bit to produce something of such immense value and uniqueness.
If you’re looking for any of Marillier’s Sevenwaters books, here they all are! Check ’em out!!! You won’t regret it and you’ll likely find your favorite book series of ALL time.