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The Heir of Night (The Wall of Night #1)

3.73  ·  Rating Details ·  1,097 Ratings  ·  160 Reviews
Malian is being trained to rule. Her people garrison the mountain range 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 attacks her fortress home and the Keep of Winds becomes a bloodbath.
Paperback, 452 pages
Published January 1st 2012 by Orbit (first published January 1st 2010)
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Maria Dimitrova
Aug 05, 2014 Maria Dimitrova rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Epic and High Fantasy lovers
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
While technically this qualifies as young adult fantasy it doesn't read like a YA. And it's one of it's strongest pros for me. There's no angst and hormone-induced stupidity. The main characters - Malian and Kalan - act appropriate for their ages most of the time with and air of wisdom and maturity that can be expected from an alien warrior race that has been at war for thousands if not millions of years.

I liked how the story progressed and it's pacing. The world building is a problem however.
Jun 28, 2012 Tim rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It is rare that I will pick up a book based on the promotional 'guff' that is used on front covers, especially as I work within publishing and know exactly what goes into that process. However, because I worship to the goddess that is Robin Hobb, I bought it (thankfully on offer).

There are some interesting concepts at work here. I like the mythology behind the story and good characterisation of different races.

That is pretty much where the praise finishes.

For a start, the protagonists are too
Oh boy do I have a lot to say about this book. First off, if you're not a huge Lord of the Rings trilogy fan, then it most likely will not bother you. However, I found so many allusions to the trilogy that made the novel lose most of its originality, at least for me. This is the biggest factor as to why I rated it 2/5. The story itself was pretty well-written and the author does have potential to being a great author. I'm probably very nitpicky about this but I personally find it frustrating whe ...more
Aug 31, 2010 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Robin Hobb says 'The Heir of Night by Helen Lowe is a richly told tale of strange magic, dark treachery and conflicting loyalties, set in a well realised world’.

And she is quite right, it is.

It is a beautifully crafted novel, the world is vibrant and so are the characters, although I must admit the characterisation sometimes left me scratching my head. I had a lot of questions as to maturity - in Malian's case - and what seemed to me to be leaps of logic. But this didn't spoil my enjoyment of w
Feb 23, 2011 Mark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Out at the garrison overlooking the Wall of Night, the House of Night is attacked and its inhabitants slaughtered by a Raptor of Darkness. Our hero and heroine of this tale - Malian, the teenage heiress being groomed to inherit the House of Night, and Kalan, her male Temple trainee friend, escape the massacre and find themselves hunted by the Swarm of Dark. In doing so, Malian and Kalan both find they have magical powers. A mystery assistant from the Derai’s past comes to their aid:

“First you m
Jul 13, 2013 Simone rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in short time on the recommendation of my sister. However, when I read the back of the book I knew that I wanted to read it. My favourite books are the type that have a strong female lead and generally fall into either science fiction or fantasy. This book is definitely fantasy, though it does have some flavourings of science fiction.

Malian, the Heir of Night, is an intelligent but duty bound young girl. Her position within the keep depends on her father and her ability to lead
Online Eccentric Librarian

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More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog

Your enjoyment of a novel is often based on your taste, so whether or not you'll enjoy this book might be influenced by a similar taste. I love:

-Both Fantasy and Science Fiction genres
-Strong female protagonist
-Lots of action
-Some romance is good (though I'm fine if it's not there - Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials series fits all of four of the above)
-Originality (like George RR Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series,
Jul 23, 2012 Abhinav rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shadowhawk reviews Helen Lowe's debut novel that won her the David Gemmell Morningstar award this year, Heir of Night, the first in the Wall of Night series by Orbit Books.

"A fantasy novel written as a grand mythology epic, Heir of Night hits all the right buttons and is another must-read of the (last) year." ~The Founding Fields

Read lots of different stuff this year, I thought back in January. Step out of my comfort zone, I thought. Honestly, nothing could have prepared me for Helen Lowe's debu
Blodeuedd Finland
Review to be posted at the Gemmell Legend Awards first

If Night falls, all fall. That is the ancient prophecy of the Derai people who inhabit the world of Haarth. There among the mountains they have their keeps and hold guard against the dark forces of the Swarm. The warlike Derai are not native to this world, they came across time and space, and they have always fought the Swarm who wants to cover the universe in darkness.

Malian is the Heir of the House of Night. She loves the old stories of he
Laura Summers
Reviewed for (7 out of 10 on the blog)

'The Heir of Night' is the first in a new four part fantasy series. The Derai live on the edge of the world, charged with guarding 'The Wall' against the ancient and terrifying Swarm. A ferocious, demonic race.

The Derai are an uncompromising people, ruled by tough rules and routine. But their task is such a hard one, they dare not deviate from the way of life that has been followed for hundreds of years. For, legend claims that if the H
Mar 12, 2015 Mike rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helen Lowen’s Wall of Night series was recommended in a recent by Courtney Schafer here as a series that improves after book one. Having read the first book of that series, Heir of Night, I’m excited to see if that truly is the case. Malian, the heir of Night, is set to inherit her father’s title and take over the long watch for the Darkswarm; the abominations that her people are pledged to fight against. Before she can even dream of ascending however it is revealed that the Darkswarm is rousing ...more
Anne Hamilton
Aug 18, 2015 Anne Hamilton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, ya, australia-nz
Four and a half stars.

It's kinda YA and kinda not. The main protagonists are barely out of their tweens and, while much of the story is told from their perspective, there's lots that isn't. Solid epic fantasy that has political complexity, integrity under the hammer, honour caught in a web of intrigue, ambiguous 'good guys' and dark malevolence aplenty.

Malian is the duty-bound daughter of the Earl of Night. She spends the days when her father is out hunting the Darkspawn investigating the mazes
May 22, 2015 proxyfish rated it it was amazing
Reviewed on my blog - Books by Proxy

4.5 Stars

I first came across The Heir of Night whilst perusing a bookshop and bought it purely based on its cover... which happened to have a sale sticker on it at the time. Having now read both The Heir of Night and its sequel, The Gathering of the Lost, I am very glad I gave into impulse. Ignore your misgivings. Yes, this is another coming of age fantasy. Yes, the protagonist is a thirteen year old girl. And yes, this book is setting the scene for the rest o
Feb 26, 2013 Jared rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: epic-fantasy
While the world is interesting, the protagonist was not. The story and the characters in it are problematic, both from a reader's (mine) and a plot point-of-view.

The eponymous protagonist: Malian is a 12-13 yr old child, the daughter of the Earl of Night (ruler of the House and member of the Alliance). That age is not, in and of itself, a black mark. In this book, however, Malian alternates between the attitude of a 13 yr old and that of an adult. Some of this is appropriate for someone of that
Feb 24, 2012 Ruth rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
2010: Cheated is how I feel about this book. Marketed as the author's first foray into Adult fantasy, I was enticed to give it a try. To then find out that the protagonists are 12/13 years old. No, I cry and wail to the Heavens - how can this be? I don't particularly care that there are so called adult themes and the promise of growth throughout the trilogy. This is not what I wanted to read. This is not the author's fault and I lay the blame on her advisors, agents and publishers. This is NOT a ...more
T. Frohock
May 22, 2013 T. Frohock rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Heir of Night is the first book of the Wall of Night series, which is a more traditional epic fantasy (think Brooks, not Abercrombie), a sub-genre that I don't normally gravitate toward; however, I wanted to challenge my reading habits in 2013 and try new novels and new authors. I never know when a novel will introduce me to a new way of thinking or bring me back to a sub-genre that I drifted away from, such as the more traditional epic fantasies that I enjoyed so much when I was younger.

Wow, this was quite good. Classic Epic fantasy, well written, a freshening of standard fantasy fare. A great change from teenage angst, fantasy love triangles and often hopeless urban fantasy. This book 'cleansed' my palate and reminded me why I have been a fantasy fan since my 1st reading of Mr Eddings back in 1983.

Minor Spoilers

First glance this looks like your basic fantasy story, Ms. Lowe's writing style carefully lays out a story that I can see growing to Game of Thrones-like magnitude. Thi
Pam ☼Because Someone Must Be a Thorn☼ Tee
4 Stars!

Those who like epic fantasy novels are going to probably like this new one from Helen Lowe. The magic is well integrated into the world and her command of language is exceedingly good. More Tolkien-esque than trendy and modern.

I would have given the book 5-Stars except for the fact that there is this break in the storyline that I had difficulty getting past. I actually had to put the book down for three days before I could integrate myself back into it. And if I was to try to summarize w
Sep 18, 2010 Rosey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, read-in-2011
2.7 Stars

The first book in my Fantasy In August event, was not as strong as I hoped. The beginning was slow until the hunt in the Old Keep. Then it slowed down, then picked back up. Some of the names are long and hard to pronounce but it didn't bother me that much. You might get lost in the world building the dream sequences. It can get confusing. It did have a ending set up for the next book. At times I wanted to give this a 5/10 and sometimes I wanted to give it a 6/10. Will read on because I
Sep 26, 2012 Alex rated it liked it
The heir of night / Helen Lowe. This novel is comparable to Tolkien's The Lord of The Rings world. (There is an author interview at the back of this edition!)
This style perhaps put me off a little as the sequence of events was set over the course of a few days. To put the book down, i lost continuity. I did not identify with Malian, the heroine, either which made it harder to persevere. [Call me cynical if you like.] About 200 pages in (out of 435), I realised I was finally captivated. Helen Lo
May 03, 2013 Lida rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The story starts a bit slow, gradually introducing all the various colourful characters...

But it doesn't lack in tension or interesting diversions.

I found this book highly entertaining and looking forward to reading the sequel to continue to Malian's pursuit in discovering the extent of her powers, the true identity of the powers behind the Darkswarm and the roles of all the many people around her will get to play.

Mar 13, 2015 Robert rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good old sword & sorcery — what's not to like? I did feel a few characters had a habit of speaking a bit too portentously — as though they were speaking in the late Terry Pratchett's CAPITAL LETTERS voice, but it was an enjoyable story and I have volume 2 on order. I did feel the main characters got an awful lot of help, but, although it seems to be forgotten at times, my impression was that they were supposed to be barely thirteen.
Oct 06, 2010 Brandon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helen Lowe did an amazing job with this first book building a complex and interesting world. The characters are interesting and varied and the large amount of history and lore mentioned help give the world of sense of age and depth.

That said I was a bit disappointed in how the book ended and how it felt like most things were handed to the main characters right when they needed them or that everything aligned so well because it was destiny.

Jun 13, 2013 Faye rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-books
Really enjoyed this fantasy/scifi cross.... In face couldn't put it down. Was up till the early hours of the morning reading till I couldn't keep my eyes open, then after just 5 hours sleep had to finish it. Plenty of magic, swords and prophecies to satisfy me... Reminded me a bit of Dune crossed with Krull... Absolutely loved it. Have ordered the next book at my library but I will probably buy these anyway. Can highly recommend it, brilliant!!!
Chris Shaffer
The book started slowly and awkwardly. There were far too many artificial conversations where characters explained things they obviously already knew about the world to each other in order to explain it to the reader. Fortunately, the tale started holding together about halfway through and was pretty good by the end.

Note that this is not a complete story. It stops abruptly in the middle of the plot. A true rating will depend on how many more books are in the series and how good they are.
Apr 28, 2013 Pat rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Solid fantasy with clever mix of young adult and adult characters to keep the action going.
Seregil of Rhiminee
Jun 11, 2012 Seregil of Rhiminee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I recently read Helen Lowe's wonderful debut book, Thornspell, and now I had a chance to read the Advance Readers Edition of her second book, The Heir of Night. The Heir of Night is different from Thornspell, but it's just as good and interesting as Thornspell. Thornspell is a young adult fantasy book (a retelling of Sleeping Beauty), but The Heir of Night is a dark and complex book for adults.

The Heir of Night is traditional fantasy, but it's excellent traditional fantasy. Helen Lowe's prose fl
Jan 15, 2012 James rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: high-fantasy, fantasy
This was a shot out of the blue. A brilliant, suprising shot that took my breath away and showed me the wonders of the world. By sheer chance I saw this on the shelf and picked it up, without reading the blurb, on a whim. A whim. Boy am I gald I get whims. An amazing, mind blowing Five Stars.

Plot: Five Stars

For a book that spends the first two Books(sections) [out of the three in the first novel] in one singular location - the Night Keeps - this is an amazingly broad and wide ranging fantasy.
Jen Rothmeyer
Jan 17, 2016 Jen Rothmeyer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Heir of Night is a solid entry into the epic fantasy genre with a lot of promise.
Every once in awhile I get hold of a book and grips me back. That was the case with Heir of Night, which I started reading on January 17. I finished the book in a reasonable amount of time, but the ending left me with so many questions that I needed to re-read it and re-process. I took a small break then picked it up and read it again, finishing it last night. There is just something about the simplistic language
Pete Mack
With a rough plot so similar to Chronicles of the Kencyrath, what this series lacks becomes more glaring. What they share:
(view spoiler)
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 12, 2015 08:59AM  
  • Songs of the Earth (The Wild Hunt, #1)
  • The River Kings' Road (Ithelas, #1)
  • Dog and Dragon
  • Roil  (The Nightbound Land, #1)
  • The Return Part II & The Last Story (Remember Me, #2-3)
  • The Sentinel Mage (The Cursed Kingdoms, #1)
  • Tome of the Undergates (Aeons' Gate, #1)
  • The Merchant of Dreams (Night's Masque, #2)
  • A Guile of Dragons (A Tournament of Shadows, #1)
  • King's Wrath (Valisar, #3)
  • Tymon's Flight (Chronicles of the Tree, #1)
  • City of Dreams & Nightmare (City of a Hundred Rows, #1)
  • Heroes Return (Hero, #5)
  • Heart of the Mirage (Mirage Makers, #1)
  • Firedrake (Dragonrealm, #1)
  • The King's Bastard (King Rolen's Kin, #1)
  • Blood's Pride (Shattered Kingdoms, #1)
  • The Cloud Roads (Books of the Raksura, #1)
I am a novelist, poet, blogger, interviewer, and lover of story.

My first novel "Thornspell", (Knopf) was published to critical praise in 2008, and in 2012 "The Heir Of Night", The Wall Of Night Book One, won the David Gemmell Morningstar Award for Best Fantasy Newcomer and the Sir Julius Vogel Award 2011 for Best Novel.

"The Gathering of The Lost", (The Wall Of Night Book Two), was shortlisted fo
More about Helen Lowe...

Other Books in the Series

The Wall of Night (3 books)
  • The Gathering of the Lost (Wall of Night, #2)
  • Daughter of Blood (The Wall of Night, #3)

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