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Child of Flame (Crown of Stars, #4)
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Child of Flame (Crown of Stars #4)

3.82  ·  Rating Details ·  3,724 Ratings  ·  53 Reviews
Child of Flame takes us far beyond the borders of the war-torn kingdoms of Wendar and Varre as Alain is drawn into the heart of an ancient conflict between humankind and their dread enemy, the Cursed Ones; Liath faces her most difficult trial in a land of exile; and Sanglant struggles to reach Henry with a warning about the conspiracy of sorcerers who have sworn to put an ...more
Hardcover, 850 pages
Published October 1st 2000 by DAW Hardcover (first published 2000)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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A rich and vibrant world, fascinating peoples, creatures, histories, religions, magics, and wonderfully nuanced characters... I'm loving this series, even as I'm wishing for a faster pace. It's truly epic and detailed in its sprawl, which at times means it drags.

I'm realizing that I have to take breaks in my reading so I can continue to enjoy the world without growing too impatient. When I start willing it to go faster, I take a break and read something else. Then at other times, I fail to noti
Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship
For the most part, I continue to enjoy these books. But every fantasy series longer than a trilogy seems to experience a slump by book four or five – the books grow longer, yet move more slowly – and Crown of Stars is not proving an exception to that rule.

There’s a lot going on here, and the plotlines dealing with the Quman invaders and King Henry’s foray into Aosta to claim the imperial crown are enjoyable. Elliott continues to resolve plotlines and take them in new directions, and the end of t
Jan 25, 2014 Lindsy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really, really enjoyed this book.

I had been frustrated with Liath's character trajectory in the previous book, but I knew that any flaws written were deliberate. Liath had yet to be in a situation where she was allowed to grow. In this book, she gets that opportunity and seizes it.

Alain's story is more of an interlude. He finally has an opportunity to live the life he wants. Unfortunately, the reader knows from the get-go that it cannot last.

Hanna and Rosvita continue to be wonderful POVs.

Sep 29, 2007 Rindis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Book four of Crown of Stars follows the usual practice of giving time to four major plot threads. The new major character this time is Adica, the Hollowed One of a tribe that is part of an effort to cast a truly earth-shattering spell.

Instead of this being a completely separate plot with no real tie in to the regular major cast, it is tied directly to Alain, who has been thrown 2,700 years into the past, and finds peace in a troubled little paradise. This is a big case of showing exactly what we
Feb 16, 2012 Mei-Lu rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Child of Flame is the fourth in a seven volume series called Crown of Stars. I quit reading the series two thirds of the way through book five. Book four was when I hit the wall. Books one through three I tolerated, but in book four reading this series actually started to cause me physical pain. It's weird because I was so annoyed with the characters for being such callow teenagers. In book four, things get a little bit more real. Liath and Sanglant are separated with no way to contact one anoth ...more
Dec 27, 2015 Leseparatist rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, 2016
I don't know how, but Elliott's Crown of Stars series just keeps getting better and better. At this point, the pacing is tight (with brief pauses for the Eika, who I no longer care about), the stakes are amazingly high, the world is beautifully crafted and I can't wait to find out what's next.

And I'm not sure if it's really a 5-star book for me, but I cried a lot, so there you go.

And small spoilers: (view spoiler)
Sep 09, 2015 Kristi-anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read these a while ago and was one of best sets I read so far, so anticipating all the way through all 7 books omg such good set I wished they never end, one of those where you finish and think "NOW WHAT?! :("
Gilda Felt
Aug 25, 2015 Gilda Felt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well, this is more like it! The pace picks up as all the characters are set in place for the coming battle. Much is resolved, though there is still much to get through for many of the characters. Liath and Sanglant’s stories are both in the forefront, and I love that both have had their eyes opened and, hopefully, will now find their way back to each other. Equally fascinating was Alain’s story, as, thrust into the past, he, and we, learn, at least in part, how things came to be, and why the dif ...more
Oct 03, 2007 Dave rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fantasy lovers
Shelves: fantasy
Another fine book in the continuing story.
Many of the events that take place in the past help explain some of the underlying conflicts in the present day.
The cataclysm decimated more than one race and I think this is conveyed very well by the end of the book.
Sep 16, 2012 Cheryl rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Better than book 3 but continues on with lots of fluff. Not sure I will continue with this series.
Kat  Hooper
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

The Crown of Stars series is well-thought out and obviously well-planned. It's epic in scope and it's got a lot of texture. There are many complex characters who we follow in parallel, as in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time. Some of them are very likable, and there are some really excellent villains (e.g., Hugh). Ms. Elliott's creatures are imaginative and enjoyable, and I especially liked the way they interact with the humans. Ms. Elliott uses a lot of descr
I think this series gets the title of "epic fantasy" through sheer page count alone. There's lots of delicious world building to soak up and complex intrigues being played out in this book, but a lot of it seems to be unnecessarily drawn out and repetitive.

(view spoiler)
Mar 25, 2010 Alice rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, series
This book is going realllllly slowly. I"m on page 350 or so, and it's just not pulling me in the way the earlier books in this series did. Dare I say it? There are too many different things going on. I am having a hard time even following what is happening, largely because I am trying to skim through to the next important plot point in order to by pass all the stuff that seems to belong in a totally different book. After two hundred pages of this, I am (finally) starting to see that all the disp ...more
Sep 22, 2009 Erin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-sci-fi
While I love long and involved fantasy, for Kate Elliott's abilities, this book is MUCH TOO LONG. She's at her strongest with plotting and introducing completely unpredictable and interesting twists to the story. Unfortunately, those things come all at once only for a person to have to plod through the predominantly boring portions of the story.

Yeah, I'm a glutton for punishment and must know how some story lines from this book tie up in the next one. But all in all, I wouldn't recommend this se
Mandy Magill
Jun 18, 2012 Mandy Magill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: JOHN
Recommended to Mandy by: AARON
Shelves: 1-owned-books
Book IV

Liath is trying to find out who she truly is, where she came from, and who her parents are. She has to walk the spheres in order to find the truth, but there are dangers ahead and if she isn't careful, she could die there and never make it back to Sanglant and Blessing.

Sanglant worries that he will never see Liath again, but also can't help but be angry with her for leaving them behind. As time goes on the baby Blessing is growing at an alarming rate and doesn't know what to do, or if the
Maria Focsa
Jun 28, 2013 Maria Focsa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I am about 1/3 through it and all I can say so far is...this book is so boring that watching a white wall while doing absolutely nothing sounds fun and exciting by comparison. What happened? The third book was OK-is (apart from poorly constructed and shallow characters which is a general flaw of the series). There was some action, stuff made sense.

Instead of spending some time to give a little bit of depth to the story and characters the time is spend on just writing words for no other purpose
Amy Musser
I'm only partway through this one, but so far: too much magic. Dragons, mermen, lion people, spirit quests all over the damn place. It's hard to keep it all straight. I have no problem with magic, but it just feels like so much is packed in that it crowds out plot.

I desperately wish the editor had limited Liath's spirit quest to 1 or 2 chapters instead of the whole book. It's the same thing only slightly different over and over and over. It's like Groundhog Day. And while they were at it, they s
Dec 26, 2008 Kerri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the fourth volume in what has become one of my all-time favorite fantasy series. This time, we not only get to follow the adventures of Saglant, Rosvita and others in the present but we also learn more about the past history of Elliott's world through Alin's eyes and discover a different world altogether with Liath. I love the relationship between Alain and Adica, he's one of my favorite characters and I was really glad he'd finally found the love he so deserved. I also enjoyed reading a ...more
I was charging through this book until about halfway through despite the introduction of a *completely new element*. I *liked* the new element (even though I felt like they might be the equivalent of the GD Seanchan) (Wheel of Time was traumatic) but, man, that book got slooooooow. It picked up again, but the slowness meant that the library repossessed the ebook (another strike against them, as if they needed another one) and it took forever to get it back.

Anyway. It was fine, I guess? But finis
Feb 14, 2008 Katherine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Fantasy, fourth in the Crown of Stars series. A vast improvement over the first three. Elliott, though blessed with superlative world-building skills, tended to bore by doling out history disguised as monologues. This book tells instead of showing, by thrusting one of the characters into the distant past to experience the cataclysmic events that caused the conflicts of the present. Meanwhile, the ongoing war for succession continues amidst magic, treachery, and multilayered politicking. Brillian ...more
Jan 14, 2010 Sharon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Child of Flame, the fourth book of seven in the Crown of Stars series, is an entertaining, albeit long, read. One of my favourite things about these books is the way Kate Elliott weaves together her characters' stories. We learn more about Liath's heritage, while Alain finds himself in a strange new place and Sanglant begins to play the game of intrigue. It's a frustrating book in many ways, as the "baddies" keep gaining power, but that's a definite encouragement to read books 5-7 to see them ge ...more
Armando Alvarez
Sep 18, 2007 Armando Alvarez rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: ages 17 and up
very intresting to me I like this book the best and the least because of what happens to alain .(as i said he is my favorite character besides fifth son) alain is sent to the past after another visit from the lady of battles (not going to say what happened in that visit aka spoiler) and is sent to the past by a shaman.very simple not as much of thinking but more of a "seeing" .Liath has conflicts of her own being seperated from her child and husband to learn how to control her powers and find ou ...more
Sep 01, 2013 Rhode rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I give up. Just can't make myself go on anymore. I love Kate Elliott normally, and really have given this series a fair shot. But halfway through and I'm just bored and tired of her switching to different characters stories constantly. Whenever I finally begin to be engrossed in one plot line, it's whizz bang over to a different one. Which makes her slowish writing feel even more slow.

This book has been sitting by my bedside table for three weeks now at the half read point and its time just to c
Deanne Robin
Apr 26, 2013 Deanne Robin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm one who loves a challenge when reading books... And this series is a challenge! There is a lot to keep straight and it seems that every book in the series adds more... But it is worth it so far. I'll admit it is a little bit drawn out at times but I'm sure it will all be needed in later books. I have seen this happen in the first few books so I am curious to see how it all affects future books. I know there are seven total and I can't wait to see how it ends!
Sarah Wagner
Aug 18, 2014 Sarah Wagner rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I've really enjoyed this series so far, but this installment was tough going. I don't know if I'm just not up for a 900-page book at the moment or the writing is at fault, but I struggled to get through this one. I also felt Child of Flame failed to hit the same emotional notes as the previous volumes and was therefore somewhat less engrossing. I'm planning to continue the series, but I may take a break for a little while.
Michelle Wardhaugh
Finally. The end of this started to finally answer some of the mysteries, but all the people with pieces of truth are spread far and wide. Frustrating. This one wasn't as difficult to read as the last, but I'm not sorry that I don't currently have any more volumes in the series and won't get to them for a few years at earliest.
Jul 23, 2011 Ruth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spec-fic
From an excerpt of an interview with the authoe -"the inspiration for Adica is the Egtved Girl, whose grave was uncovered in 1921. When my family lived in Copenhagen in the autumn of 1999, I often visited the National Museum where her remains lie today under glass. The cover illustration by Jody A Lee for the USA edition of CHILD OF FLAME depicts a version of her clothing.".
Sarah Jane
The Crown of Stars series is my first introduction into science fiction and fantasy novels. That's the only reason they would get such a high rating. As a young girl I related with the character Liath, especially her ability to escape to an attic in her mind where she hides all her pain. It taught me a valuable coping mechanism, and probably helped me in later years with meditation.
May 19, 2011 Erinn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, epic-fantasy
I couldn't get enough of Alain's storyline, and to be honest every story line ends up being so interesting. I like seeing how often the different characters cross paths or have visions of each other, even when they don't know who the others are.
Nov 18, 2012 Jenn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: have-read
About halfway I got tired of the whining characters... ALL OF THEM ... I want strong characters! I am all for torturing characters but I need a rallying point here!! I did love the length I wish all books were this long! Well written and truly an EPIC fantasy, on to the next...
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As a child in rural Oregon, Kate Elliott made up stories because she longed to escape to a world of lurid adventure fiction. She now writes fantasy, steampunk, and science fiction, often with a romantic edge. It should therefore come as no surprise that she met her future husband in a sword fight.

When he gave up police work to study archaeology, they and their three children fell into an entirely
More about Kate Elliott...

Other Books in the Series

Crown of Stars (7 books)
  • King's Dragon (Crown of Stars, #1)
  • Prince of Dogs (Crown of Stars, #2)
  • The Burning Stone (Crown of Stars, #3)
  • The Gathering Storm (Crown of Stars, #5)
  • In the Ruins (Crown of Stars, #6)
  • Crown of Stars (Crown of Stars, #7)

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