Okay, this was the best Warriors books so far. 4.5 I wish I could give.
It has the edge on Forest of Secrets mostly because I really love the brothers...moreOkay, this was the best Warriors books so far. 4.5 I wish I could give.
It has the edge on Forest of Secrets mostly because I really love the brothers. I still take issue with some of the overly easy characterization the Erins do, which is why I can't give it a five. But the pace was amazing, the intrigue was great and the character arcs were brilliant. I loved this book. It makes me want to jump right into The Power of Three series, even though I've heard that is... not as good. Characters like Squirrelflight, Brambleclaw, Mothwing and Leafpool were all worth reading about their development and choices, as well as my old favorites of Cloudtail, Brightheart and Mistyfoot. As I mentioned before, I am also forgiving of Brambleclaw's indecisive attitude regarding his desire for power in that he feels his father's influence, but it is helped by the fact that Brambleclaw does consider things and reevaluate his positions based on the right catalysts. While Squirrelflight's attitude toward Brambleclaw is bizarre because she, nor Leafpool, have any reason to constantly wonder whether Brambleclaw is like his father, I will allow that it is mostly her frustration at his refusal to consider her perspective. I also feel really, really awful for poor Leafpool (view spoiler)[especially since I know how things turn out for her in The Power of Three (hide spoiler)].
That said, The New Prophecy should have been four books, not six. Dawn was a total waste of time. And much of Starlight could've been handled in Twilight. The overall pacing of the series was atrocious ad the in-between books really dragged. I probably won't be picking up Power of Three for another several months, as I might be kitty'd out, but I hope, for all its other flaws, that it knows how to pace itself.
One more thing that was probably my BIGGEST frustration with the final three books. After spending half of the second series trying to convince readers that the Warriors need to learn to make their own decisions and not look to StarClan for everything, the final three books completely throw this idea out the window. Almost EVERY major decision is a result of StarClan interference (view spoiler)[Leafpool deciding to run away with Crowfeather, Leafpool deciding it's all right for her sister to be mates with Brambleclaw, Squirrelflight making the same decision, Firestar deciding to make Brambleclaw deputy, Leafpool figuring out Mothwing's secret... HELL the only cat who makes his own decisions IS Brambleclaw, who makes the climatic decision to save Firestar (hide spoiler)]. THIS IS RIDICULOUS. I don't like the agency it takes from the characters, and I'm particularly disturbed that it suggests to its children readers to look toward someone else when making their decisions, higher power or no. This extensive reliance on StarClan was never present in the original series, and it shouldn't be here. I hope this element is also excised from The Power of Three.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Technically 3.5 stars, but I refuse to give four because the relationships were all so forced.
Much better than the previous few. This one had good pac...moreTechnically 3.5 stars, but I refuse to give four because the relationships were all so forced.
Much better than the previous few. This one had good pace and some really good ideas such as the difficulty with the clans helping one another. The kitty romance would have worked better had I believed either of these characters really cared about each other beyond the fact that the authors told me so. I'm also disappointed to be denied Brambleclaw's perspective, but I suspect that will be the next book. I want more scenes with the Dark Forest. Oh yes, the end actually did upset me because I really love that character. One more thing of note, while Leafpool has excuse to distrust Brambleclaw, Squirreflight's attitude seemed really forced and only done for sake of kitty love triangle. Ugh.(less)
This one had a fair amount of things going on so it was less of a drag that the other book was. I still have serious issues with how one-dimensional t...moreThis one had a fair amount of things going on so it was less of a drag that the other book was. I still have serious issues with how one-dimensional the Erins choose to write romance. I don't know why they bother to put it in the stories if they're not going to spare the time to develop it beyond "intense electrical jolts" and whatever else. Especially since the relationship started in this book is supposed to be the crux almost all the books after this hinge on. And I don't believe it remotely. I actually like Brambleclaw and Hawkfrost, even if it makes Brambleclaw as dumb as a rock. But I'm a sucker for brother relationships, especially poisonous ones. As long as I get more of that in the next book, I'll be happy.(less)
This book was incredibly slow since almost all of it was the cats deciding what the heck they wanted to do. It got better around the halfway mark but...moreThis book was incredibly slow since almost all of it was the cats deciding what the heck they wanted to do. It got better around the halfway mark but still nothing special. This was a very midway book, where not much development happened for the characters either. I do like what they're starting with Hawkfrost and Brambleclaw though.(less)
Much more stilted than the first book. I disliked Stormfur as a narrator immensely because he suffered from the same character issues as Firestar. I a...moreMuch more stilted than the first book. I disliked Stormfur as a narrator immensely because he suffered from the same character issues as Firestar. I also disliked the way character fell in love in this book. I tend to not buy any of the romances the Erins offer and usually prefer the strong platonic relationships, such as that of Sorreltail and Leafpaw or her and Mothwing. I also think the whole thing with the Tribe could have been better done. Here's hoping the next book picks up the pace. It has some good things set up with Hawkfrost.(less)
I actually really enjoyed this book. The characters were all well-developed. They did some nice breaking of gender stereotypes and I didn't have to pu...moreI actually really enjoyed this book. The characters were all well-developed. They did some nice breaking of gender stereotypes and I didn't have to put up much with self-righteous Firestar. Though it does suck that I already know what's going to happen to some of the characters. I think there is also some decent foreshadowing going on here. I think I'm going to enjoy reading stories about Brambleclaw and his crew.(less)
This gets a soft 3, which is actually closer to a 2.5. It was average-ish. But it was a quick, easy read so I won't judge it as harshly as I did Blues...moreThis gets a soft 3, which is actually closer to a 2.5. It was average-ish. But it was a quick, easy read so I won't judge it as harshly as I did Bluestar's Prophecy.
Some things about this book I enjoyed, such as the overall quest and the idea of Firestar having to make up for the sins of the other Clans. There were also a few enjoyable characters such as Sky, Scratch and the kittypet siblings. But there was a lot of derivative action going on in this book, which was pointed out often by the main characters. Authors take note, when you are just copying an old formula, it is not clever to have your characters actually reference this. I also remembered my great dislike for Firestar, who not only was super reluctant about his quest throughout but had that stupid thing going on between Sandstorm and Spottedleaf, who is dead by the way. I just felt that whole plot was really forced. They wanted to give Firestar and Sandstorm some conflict before they had kittens so they had to throw in some nonsense about Sandstorm believing Firestar was not honest with her. He wasn't, but that's neither here or there. The subplot was still dumb. I also felt the authors didn't try hard enough to make things actually fall in place, and there was a lot of deus ex machina going around, particularly with the final decision of the medicine cat and the clan leader. I would have appreciated more surprises instead of things just randomly working out. Mostly though, I think this book was just hampered by the fact that Firestar is incredibly dull, and I didn't have the other characters as much to mitigate that. We'll see how I feel about the new characters.(less)
**spoiler alert** Okay, real review this time. Like I said, I was disappointed. I was really looking forward to some of the major turning points of Bl...more**spoiler alert** Okay, real review this time. Like I said, I was disappointed. I was really looking forward to some of the major turning points of Bluestar's life, and this book delivered them in an exceptionally clumsy manner. The entire first chunk of it was padded with the usual day-to-day life and rank-rising of every other Warriors book. So many of the significant moments of Bluefur's life could have been included with one chapter for atmosphere instead of so many chapters where nothing important happens. I also didn't like the characterization of Bluestar, which was such a contrast to the wise leader of the series. This would have been all right, but there was no sign of transition to the character we see in the first Warrior series. I essentially hated Bluefur. She was whiny as a kit and selfish most of her life. As a matter of fact, I can find no reason why she was deputized. The book makes it seem like Bluefur will have to do this tremendous task to earn her eventual right to rule, and while she does, in a way, with the sacrifice of her kits, this is a sacrifice none of Clan knows of. Contrast this to the many ways Firestar makes his mark on the Clan before becoming deputy and then leader. He earns it. I never get the sense that Bluefur did at all.
This was my huge issue with the book, the lack of actual development. I know we already know what happened, but that doesn't mean we aren't interested to know how and why it happened. I felt this book just assumed because we knew what happened, we didn't need any real explanations. Characters were evil because they are in the series. There's nothing to show what makes them this way, aside from maybe Tigerclaw. I don't even know why Bluefur fell in love with Oakheart. She sees him a few times and then suddenly she feels strange when she thinks about him. Then, they hang out together for all of one day. It's a terrible romance. I don't understand why Bluefur betrayed the Code to be with Oakheart when she didn't know him. I can accept soul mates when they get to know each other, but this strained my acceptance too far. I don't even know why Bluefur LIKED Oakheart. Since this relationship is so crucial to the series and Bluestar's prophecy, I thought it was poorly handled. Then, there's the prophecy. The pacing on it, particularly, is horrid. It comes and goes, sometimes being pounded into your skull and others forgotten entirely. At the end, when Bluefur has her kits and suddenly has to deal with the prophecy, it all felt very forced. It was too rushed, when I thought this was the entire point of the book. It was squeezed into a paltry handful of chapters, especially unnecessary when you count the repeated chapter at the end of the book. I don't mind book-ending things, but make sure you have room for the actual story. Oh, also showing Crookedstar as a friendly apprentice and then focusing on him as nothing but a vicious Warrior made no sense, except for giving Bluestar more pain, I guess. I think there was a better way to show Clan rivalry, like maybe have Crookedstar continue to have this nice personality at the Gatherings and Warrior personality on the battlefield.
Now, as for the things, I did enjoy. I liked seeing the backstory of some of the cats such as Tigerclaw, Goldenflower, Lionheart and especially Tallstar. I enjoyed Bluefur's relationship with her family and the portrayal of her devastating losses. I liked seeing more Oakheart and I did like the one chapter with him and Bluefur getting to know each other. I liked the nature of the prophecies and how we never knew whether or not the Medicine Cat was reliable.
But overall, this book bothered me. I actually disliked it more than the first Warriors book, which didn't particularly hold me (to be fair I had seen most of it than a fan-animation) because I had such high hopes for it. For a 500-page book, this one was a real chore to get through. And I can properly critique this one since other books in this series have shown good pacing and development. This one was too much of a "get to point B from point A" story. Prequel Star Wars was an appropriate comparison.(less)
**spoiler alert** This review is technically 3.5 stars since my issues with the resolution are heavy. Also, with Firestar's inability to comprehend ob...more**spoiler alert** This review is technically 3.5 stars since my issues with the resolution are heavy. Also, with Firestar's inability to comprehend obvious prophetic hints to the point where I want to smack him.
I was a bit harsh on this book from the start became it committed the sloppy error of not showing proper reference to the book that came before it. And I am still undecided as to how I feel about Tigerstar and Firestar never having their final confrontation. I suspect it's one of those "banality of evil" things Stephen King always talks about. But more than that, I guess it's because the Erins really wanted to unite the clans for just this once, and it is a very powerful image. I both love and hate the idea of the clans who can bot respect each other but be bitter rivals at the slightest conflict. It's interesting how the cats value the separation as part of the balance. But it gets more tricky with the cats who mate with those from other clans. How much of a sin is that supposed to be considered?
Back to the book, I really loved all the parts with StarClan. They managed to be both beautiful and powerful, especially with the revelation of "five" clans at the end. It was a very well-written line and scene. And I loved having Bluestar back in her prime and no longer ravaged by her madness. I also liked the dark mystery that was Bramblepaw, Tawynpaw and Leopardstar's characters. Their conclusions were appropriate and added some unique depth to the story. I especially liked how their issues aren't so easily resolved.
I do wish Whitestorm hadn't died though, no matter how many hints they kept giving me that he would. I love Whitestorm.
I disliked Firestar less in this book, although he does still suffer from his prejudices. He at least is learning to overcome them.
My plan is to mix Warriors books in between other books from now on. I do plan to continue reading to see what happens to the children of the major characters, as well as Cloudtail and Brightheart.(less)
**spoiler alert** There were things I really liked about this one, such as pacing and the gradual worsening of Bluestar's sanity until her climatic re...more**spoiler alert** There were things I really liked about this one, such as pacing and the gradual worsening of Bluestar's sanity until her climatic return, and things I really disliked. I don't think I like Fireheart at all. Or rather I don't like how repetitive he is, even for a children's book. I get why he has prejudice against Bramblepaw and I get why he worries about Sandstorm, but having the same thoughts over and over again really make him seem like a jerk. With Sandstorm especially since it's the classic "I love you too much to let you do anything and must protect you" trope that I hate in fiction. I don't even care that he half-realizes it's wrong. It got really old. I love Sandstorm and find her a fun character so I couldn't stand the on-again off-again attitude she had toward Fireheart throughout the book. Having them make up just to have another fight tear them apart doesn't add drama; it annoys people. I also thought Fireheart handled Bluestar's insanity terrible, and he had Whitestorm's coaching. The going around her back was, of course, going to increase her paranoia. I also don't like how long it took him to figure out what the dogs were, despite repeated warnings. This felt like an unnecessary way to drag out the plot.
That said, I really enjoyed everything about Bluestar from the reveal of her kits, to her coping with their mistrust, to her perception of her clan as traitors to her war with StarClan. I think her decision to come back for Fireheart was a little rushed, but I can forgive it. I also really liked everything with Cloudtail and Brightpaw, which was a courtship that wasn't obnoxious and was just sweet. Graystripe's return was also well-handled, along with Dustpelt and Longtail's begrudged loyalty to their Clan over Tigerstar. I enjoy the complex aspects of Warriors. But I think children can learn lessons without being put through the same one at least five times throughout a 300-page book. Fireheart better have learned his lesson and be competent in the final one. (less)
**spoiler alert** This book suffered from its pacing, with far too long stretches of nothing overly interesting happened. What kept it interesting was...more**spoiler alert** This book suffered from its pacing, with far too long stretches of nothing overly interesting happened. What kept it interesting was the mood it presented of an anxious clan and an overall uncertainty about the safety of the forest. Fireheart's flip-flopping moods also got on my nerves several times, with him seeming to understand situations perfectly one moment and then collapse into spitting the next (especially when it came to Tigerclaw's son). Cloudpaw's return was also awkwardly handled and much too easy, unlike Graystripe's homesickness, which made sense given the devastation of his old breeding grounds. Otherwise, characters such as Cinderpelt, Ravenpaw, Dustpelt and Cloudpaw had satisfying character development arcs. I also liked the way the ShadowClan transition was handled. Overall, this one was not as good as the previous but set up the series for a strong fifth book, I hope.(less)
**spoiler alert** I think I'm getting truly addicted to these books, and I'm not sure why. I'll chalk it up to my love of cats, but I also think that...more**spoiler alert** I think I'm getting truly addicted to these books, and I'm not sure why. I'll chalk it up to my love of cats, but I also think that the storyline has genuinely improved, and the variety of plot parallels and revelations are quite good. My biggest gripe would be the repetition of key plot events, but I suspect that's to help the younger readers. Other than that, this one had a very suitable pace and its share of enjoyable character development, especially on Bluestar's behalf.
Fireheart is a mixed bag, being both ridiculously kind and noble at times and at others being stubbornly devoted to the Code. I do like that he does suffer for his missteps though. I also like that he does struggle with his opinions. It makes me wonder about his reactions to later events of the series. I have heard about plenty through various spoilers.
But that one thing that sort of irks me about this series are the moralistic punishments for breaking the normalcy rules. Cats that breed outside their clan rarely live or their children die or some other horrible catastrophe. I can appreciate this from a dramatic narrative approach, the idea of having to live with the consequences of disobeying societal norms. But I'm not sure what the writers are trying to express as to whether these laws on interbreeding, breeding outside your cast, associating with other clans are in the right or the wrong. From the cats' perspective, it makes perfect sense. But since the writers determine the outcomes for the rule-breakers, it brings to mind what Gabi once told me about the "hammer of morality" and that just leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I would like to see an example of a rule-breaker that doesn't result in horrific consequences, outside of clan resentment and general difficulties.(less)
**spoiler alert** Much better than the first of the series, with the characters actually showing personalities instead of archetypes this time. Though...more**spoiler alert** Much better than the first of the series, with the characters actually showing personalities instead of archetypes this time. Though it's true, as Sue told me, YA writers design chapters to keep readers reading, rife with cliffhangers. I think I enjoyed this one more because there was more at stake than just one character trying to find his place with the rest. I also enjoy the new characters that were added, including Fireheart's nephew and his apprentice. I look forward to some interesting character arcs with the nephew. (less)
Meh, the ending was entirely too preachy for me and really unsatisfying. I cannot say I especially enjoyed any aspect of this book. I didn't like the...moreMeh, the ending was entirely too preachy for me and really unsatisfying. I cannot say I especially enjoyed any aspect of this book. I didn't like the merging of history with the wolves either. The whole thing felt too artistic and the story-telling was clunky. I had particular issues with the lack of genuine character development from anyone and the reliance on fate to move characters and events forward. I would have actually appreciated more behind Morgra's tale than any of the family wolves, with the exception of Larka's brother. Overall, I don't enjoy this manner of storytelling and it lacks an true engaging factors. I will not be reading the sequel. I also found the actual power of The Sight to be incredibly dull.(less)
This book was a bit derivative, although I can't really knock it since it was written for children. It didn't have any of the forbidden friendships I...moreThis book was a bit derivative, although I can't really knock it since it was written for children. It didn't have any of the forbidden friendships I was promised from later books either. I am slightly intrigued by the betrayal angle and might continue reading for that. I already borrowed the second book, and they are quick reads. I just wish the characters were more engaging.(less)