Title: Winter's Heir (Fairy Queens #7)
Author: Amber Argyle
Publication Date: July 20th, 2016
Synopsis: A price must be paid.
Elice has left behind the ice and isolation of winter. Before her is the warmth and wonder of summer with all its color and life. Adar, the young man she saved from the sea, is by her side, and his touch sends tendrils of heat where before there was only cold.
But all is not as it seems. There are secrets hidden in the heart of summer. Secrets that could burn Elice to the ground and take the whole world with her. The decades-long war between the fairies of winter and summer has thrown off the balance of nature, leaving the world in its death throes.
Adar believes Elice can stop the destruction—if only she will listen to him. But like the fairies’ bargains, that trust comes with a cost. And the price Elice will pay will tear asunder the boundaries between dreams and family, loyalty and betrayal.
Review: Amber Argyle's Fairy Queens series is one of my favorite fantasy series of all time. I've loved getting to know Elice, Adar, Ilyenna, and Nelay and their incredible world. Winter's Heir picks up pretty soon after Daughter of Winter ends, and ties up all of the loose ends left over from the other books in the series. We still see things from Adar and Elice, and I actually enjoyed putting together all of the pieces to the puzzle as they did. I'm just so sad that this series is over now!
I was definitely suspicious of Adar's intentions in Daughter of Winter, and it turns out he was a little bit sketchy. But for all of the right reasons, I think, so I ended up really loving him by the end. Maybe as much as I loved Rycus (who also shows up!). He might actually be my favorite character in this book, even if his means to an end aren't always things I agree with. He really does care for Elice and just wants what is best for their world. Elice, on the other hand, might be my least favorite of the fairy Queens. She still starts out this book kind of whiny, and refuses to listen to Adar for most of it. Don't get me wrong - she matures and grows into an incredible woman who no doubt rules her kingdom fairly and kindly, and she's quick-witted and intelligent and manages to find a solution to the problems the kingdoms are facing. I just didn't connect with her the way I did with Ilyenna in Winter Queen and Nelay in Summer Queen.
Like always, even the supporting characters are incredibly complex and important. Nelay, Rycus, Ilyenna, Otec, and all of their friends make appearances again (which was a great way to tie all of the books together!), and we even get to meet some new characters. I loved Adar's sister and Cinder, and I am so glad that Amber has more planned for Cinder! I hope that comes to fruition, because I'd love to learn more about her.
After 7 books, you'd think that the world would be pretty fleshed out, but Amber keeps throwing more surprises in that help the world continually expand. I thought I knew everything I needed to know about the Summer and Winter kingdoms, but I was obviously wrong! After this book, I feel like there's still so much more that I could learn, even though it seems like I've been there myself. There's so much history that I'd love to learn about that I don't think I would ever get enough.
While I'm still so sad this series is over, I will definitely be revisiting this world often! If you're a fan of fantasy books, you'll definitely want to read the Fairy Queens series. All of the books are filled with magic, romance, adventure, fantastic world-building, and a plot that will grip you tight from the very beginning. Winter's Heir in particular is an epic conclusion that will wrap everything up nicely, connect all of the books in a way I didn't think was possible, and leave you completely satisfied with how things turn out. That's not to say I won't always want more, but I am definitely content with how this series ended! Definitely a 5/5 and a series you don't want to miss!