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Arrows of the Queen (Valdemar: Arrows of the Queen #1)

4.15 of 5 stars 4.15  ·  rating details  ·  21,404 ratings  ·  506 reviews
Talia, a young runaway, is made a herald at the royal court after she rescues one of the legendary Companions. When she uncovers a plot to seize the throne, Talia must use her empathic powers to save the queen.
ebook, 320 pages
Published March 1st 1987 by Daw Books (first published 1987)
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I've read a lot of fantasy, and I've spent a lot of time looking for fantasy that won't disappoint. When fantasy disappoints me, it usually does so predictably: either the world is poorly-built, the entire story is derivative, it is filled with creepy repressed sexuality, or the Hat Trick.

An equestrian friend of mine suggested this series: it was one of her favorites. However, her suggestion was somewhat tentative. She had previously passed Eragon and Eye of the World along to me, which are so d
Oct 20, 2014 Evgeny rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Evgeny by: Branwen *Blaidd Drwg*
Shelves: fantasy
A young boy girl named Harry Potter Talia had a very bad childhood until Hagrid Rolan came and took him her to the wizard school Collegium where he she studies, makes some friends and some enemies. By the way, I am sorry for comparing a half-giant (Hagrid) to a highly intelligent magical horse (Rolan).

Despite all of the similarities to Harry Potter - and there are more than those I mentioned already, this book is not one of the countless Harry Potter clones. For once it was written exactly ten y
When I was a kid and my father was out of town for work, my mom and I got to have sleepovers in the big bed. We would curl up with our pillows stacked behind our backs and read books and eat ice cream and fall asleep whenever we wanted to. I loved it. And, unsurprisingly, the tradition continued on until I left home. One particular time I remember it was a Friday night and I was fourteen and my mom and I went to the base library to see what we could find. I wandered down the aisles and stopped w ...more
Kat  Hooper
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

Talia is not like normal 13-year-old girls. She likes to read adventure stories and she fantasizes about being a Herald for the queen of Valdemar. She does not want to get married to one of the dreary men in her village. So, when a Companion — one of the blue-eyed white horses who belongs to a Herald — shows up without a rider, Talia is happy to help him find his way home and stunned to learn that she’s been chosen to be trained as a Herald.

Published in 19
I absolutely ADORED this book. I wanted to give it five stars...

But how can I when I'm so effing mad that (view spoiler)
This was the first Valdemar book that I read, which was sort of fortuitous since it was the first book about the world that Mercedes Lackey wrote. It isn't my favorite (Kero's tale has that honor), but it comes very very close.

I re-read this book (and the rest of the trilogy) probably about once a year, and I never get tired of them.

Don't be fooled by the childish looking covers, this trilogy deals with some VERY adult themes.. child abuse, death, torture, sex, war, rape, murder... but it does i
Abigail Parks
A friend gave me this book for my birthday and am I ever glad I didn't pay money for it. I rather wish he'd just given me a Barnes & Noble gift card instead.

From a purely technical perspective, this is possibly the worst published book I've ever read. From an emotional standpoint, this comes in a close third after some horrible book whose title I cannot recall, and Frankenstein.

But back to Arrows of the Queen. Good grief.

The highlights:

1. I am forced to put the plot as the first casualty, as
Ugh, what? Get outta here.
Talia wants one thing in life and that's to become a herald and ride their magic horses like in the stories she reads, but she lives in a village where virtually everything is forbidden to women. When she is announced to be married at the young age of 13 she panics, flees and miraculously comes upon a magical white horse in the forest, who whisks her away to become the very thing she's dreamed of, although she doesn't realize it just yet. After arriving at the Collegium she trains for the next 3 ...more
Oct 26, 2011 Crystal rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Die-hard Mercedes Lackey fans only
Shelves: fantasy
I would give this a 1.5 if I could because I did enjoy the beginning of this book, if nothing else. I was sorely disappointed with this book, as I am a fan of Mercedes Lackey's other books. This novel seemed rushed, as if the only reason for it was to set the scene for the next novel in the series. The beginning seemed promising. I was truly interested in following this girl's journey. However, it quickly degenerated into something barely readable. Much of this girl's life was glossed over. When ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Actually this book is better than a 3...but it's not really a 4. It's a well written book about a, are you ready? Young hero who's miserable, abused and unappreciated at home, until duh, duh, duh, duh, duh, duh, duh, DAAAAA, one of the chosen. Yes gasp she's to be a Herald!!!!!!

So you get the picture. The young protagonist who's had a hard to miserable childhood/youth and then gets called away to be a hero/heroine. Still (my sense of humor aside) it's a well written book and the young protagonis
I absolutely adored all of Lackey's Valdemar novels when I was an adolescent, but a lot of them are a little too emo for me now. I still truly enjoy her first trilogy, the Arrows of the Queen, despite the fact that it shows Lackey's inexperience. I often feel that an author's first book is frequently his or her best, and I believe this to be true of Lackey.

Talia and Dirk were always my favorite characters in all of Lackey's books, and this trilogy is the only series they are featured in. (They b
This book was my first fantasy read since Harry Potter. It painted an amazing picture that had elements of magic, but not so much that it made the plotline unbelievable. Talya's transformation from quiet shy adolescent child too confident young woman was Not only believable but extraordinary. Magic came in the form of magical horses which was very appealing to me as I was horse crazy since I was a young kid. This book left you in a state of wonder as to what may happen next. I can't wait to see ...more
So, the thing about re-reading a beloved favorite book for the first time in, let's be honest, almost a decade (ugg, how am I old enough to write that sentence), is that sometimes they're not quite as good as your remember. I read Arrows of the Queen for the first time my freshman year of high school (and promptly gave my copy to the bf, who was the one who bought the copies of the books I'm now reading, fourteen years later, full circle baby) (oh dear, it's going to be one of those reviews, I s ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Melissa Pack
Aug 29, 2011 Melissa Pack rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Melissa by: My mom
This was the very first book of her's that I ever read...and it has changed my life. There's no other way to describe the impact this book has had on me. Since reading this book I have discovered a world that has taken me places I have never dreamed of. Arrow's Of The Queen introduced the world of Valdemar to me and many other worlds since then. I have read the entire Valdemar series dozens of times and each time it's like reading a new book all over again. I find new things to love about it eac ...more
Adolescent female wish-fulfillment ftw.

Just to get it out of the way - this book is not well written. It's chock full of telling-not-showing and extraneous adverbs. It lacks narrative structure. Our heroine is unbelievably gifted and also under-appreciated in that way that adolescent readers really relate to. Except not really, because everyone loves the living crap out of her (she just doesn't realize it). Its lack of technical proficiency is actually kind of endearing, in that it reminds me o
I was really torn between two and three stars. I remember loving this book in high school and really connecting with Talia. I remember feeling very intrigued by empathy being a "gift". Even after figuring out that I wasn't as into Mercedes Lackey anymore, this book still held a special place in my heart.

So you can imagine that I was incredibly disappointed with this read through. I remember having certain thoughts when I was younger. Why didn't I know that Cheryl was into Keren until I suddenly
Jeremy Preacher
Oh, dear. Arrows of the Queen is such an adolescent novel. Not a Young Adult novel - I'm not talking about category, here. I'm talking about the maturity level of the work compared to the rest of the Valdemar canon. Even the Vanyel books are light-years ahead of this charming but dreadfully slight exercise in wish-fulfillment.

I don't think it's *bad*, mind you. Talia is adorable (except when she's thinking things like "Well I know this trustworthy adult said they'd help but I don't want to be a
When I was younger, I would say in my early teens, my friends read all of the Mercedes Lackey books they could get their eyes on. Because I didn't listen
to audio books at the time— I only read Braille when I could be bothered to read, that is, I didn't get to read these books. and what a series I missed,
but I'm catching up now and am delighted to do so. the NLS annotation is below.
Talia lives on the borders of the kingdom in an isolated, grim hold. She knows little about the outside world except
Talia is just 13 and on the verge of being forced into marriage when she is rescued from her abusive home by a Companion, a mythical horse that serves the Queen. When she rides the Companion to the kingdom's capital in order to return him, she discovers that she has been Chosen as a Herald, a servant of the Queen and part of an elite training program. This is something that Talia has only dreamed about while stealing a rare moment to read... but will she be able to meet everyone's expectations, ...more
Suzanne the Mighty (Under the Covers Book blog)
4.5 Stars

Talia has never fitted into her home, she dream of adventures and not the bland drudgery and abuse that she lives with. When she realises the future planned for her by those in her household she blindly runs only to found by a Companion the fabled steeds of the Heralds who serve the Queen as messengers and warriors, not wanting to go back to her home Talia decides to take the Companion back to the Queen and see where fate may take her.

This is the first Mercedes Lackey book I have read
I just finished reading this about ten minutes ago; it took me less than a day to read and I have to say it was very well worth it. I came rather late to the whole Heralds-book-thing, Arrows of the Queen being the first one I've read and it was published twenty-five years ago. I remember all my friends reading books either from this series or any of the other half-dozen or so series of books that Mercedes Lackey wrote that were based in the same world, and they do seem to be the sort of story I ...more
Arrows of the Queen – Heralds of Valdemar 01

A gentle breeze rustled the leaves of the tree, but the young girl seated beneath it did not seem to notice.

Arrows of the Queen begins with Talia, a young Holderfolk girl, sat beneath a tree reading. The book she is reading tells the story of Vanyel, one of the legendary Heralds of Valdemar, as he faces insurmountable odds in service to his queen. In this first chapter, we are introduced to her straight-laced world, a world where a girl should not read
Shera (Book Whispers)
Genre: Epic Fantasy

Terry Brooks, Robert Jordan, David Eddings, and other popular male authors where about it for Epic Fantasy exposure when I was first starting out in the genre. So it came as a shock when the allure of a female voice was so addicting after being bombarded with male writing—in fact Lackey was the first female EF author I had ever read back when. It was a shock to read a book that actually had emotions and plots that worked with them. Of course the idea of mystical horses that ca
Authors' first books are often not very good. Thankfully, Mercedes Lackey's first book is not actually bad. Arrows of the Queen is readable, if often slow and almost completely lacking in plot (the ending surprised me because, well, there wasn't one). I wouldn't recommend reading this book for its own sake, but if you're interested in the Heralds of Valdermar series and you want to start from the beginning, go for it--just know that later books, although similar, are better. Don't let this rough ...more
Elizabeth S
Pretty darn good. It seems there are a number of fantasy series out there that start with a young girl growing up in an abused/repressed situation, she dreams of something bigger, some talent/ability is discovered in her, she gets the appropriate training, and her dreams come true to some extent. The thing I appreciate about this one is that the young girl does not unrealistically blossom as soon as she leaves home. She has scars from her past that take time to overcome. I like that the author d ...more
This is one of my favorite books, and I've read it so many times it's started falling apart.

Growing up, I had a hard life, and Talia's story, being carried off by a magical creature away from her horrible family and into a new life, and a grand adventure, struck a chord in me. I completely empathized with her character.

At first, Talia starts off as shy, quiet, and does her best to stay in the background, but she gradually grows to be more confident in herself and in her abilities. In the next tw
I gave this a 3 stars from memory as I read it years ago.

I found it to be an easy re read and if this were published today it would probably be classed as YA. It does have something of the YA fantasy novels of today with a bit of vague sexual reference but no actual described acts.

It is like a children's book in that the story revolves around a mythical country ruled by a Queen and served by "Heralds". The Heralds have magical gifts and a companion which looks like a glowing white horse.

Even wit
Reread with

I wasn't sure how many chapters I was supposed to read for the read-along, and in the end I just kept on going until I was finished. Ooops.

It's not a complex or complicated book, but it's still a lovely read and, to be honest, I enjoyed it more than I expected to. Lots of fun.
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Mercedes entered this world on June 24, 1950, in Chicago, had a normal childhood and graduated from Purdue University in 1972. During the late 70's she worked as an artist's model and then went into the computer programming field, ending up with American Airlines in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In addition to her fantasy writing, she has written lyrics for and recorded nearly fifty songs for Firebird Arts & ...more
More about Mercedes Lackey...

Other Books in the Series

Valdemar: Arrows of the Queen (3 books)
  • Arrow's Flight (Heralds of Valdemar, #2)
  • Arrow's Fall (Heralds of Valdemar, #3)
Magic's Pawn (Valdemar: Last Herald-Mage #1) By the Sword (Valdemar: Kerowyn's Tale, #1) Magic's Price (Valdemar: Last Herald-Mage #3) Arrow's Fall (Heralds of Valdemar, #3) Magic's Promise (Valdemar: Last Herald-Mage #2)

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