The Demon King
By: Cinda Williams Chima
My Rating: 5/5 stars
Genre: High fantasy, YA
Times are hard in the mountain city of Fellsmarch. Reformed thief Han Alister will do almost anything to eke out a living for himself, his mother, and his sister Mari. Ironically, the only thing of value he has is something he can’t sell. For as long as Han can remember, he’s worn thick silver cuffs engraved with runes. They’re clearly magicked-as he grows, they grow, and he’s never been able to get them off.
Meanwhile, Raisa ana’Marianna, Princess Heir of the Fells, has her own battles to fight. She’s just returned to court after three years of relative freedom with her father’s family at Demonai camp – riding, hunting, and working the famous Clan markets. Although Raisa will become eligible for marriage after her sixteenth name-day, she isn’t looking forward to trading in her common sense and new skills for etiquette tutors and stuffy parties.
The Seven Realms will tremble when the lives of Han and Raisa collide in this stunning new page-turner from bestselling author Cinda Williams Chima.
*The first section of this review will be spoiler free*
The synopsis of this book really doesn’t do it justice, and honestly whenever I try and explain the amazingness that is The Demon King to people it never comes across well. I will try my best. This book is one of my favourite high fantasies of all time, the whole series is great, but for the sake of this review I will focus on the first book. The two main characters Han (Cuffs) Alistair and Raisa ana’Marianna are both very well developed and complex. I really enjoyed having both a male and female narrator, and that they each had complete and developed storylines, separate from each other. Even the secondary characters were well developed and interesting. The world building was in depth and engaging. It is always risky in high fantasy, as sometimes the worlds are not well written or described. The world of the Demon King was not only well written but it felt real, there were so many elements and details, I was very impressed. In my opinion the series gets better with every book, though as a disclaimer, if you read the new series Cinda Williams Chima is writing called Shattered Realms, set in the future of this world, be aware that it will crush all your hopes and dreams early on. It is still good, but if you love the Demon King series and don’t want to ruin it, don’t read the new one.
If you are a fan of high fantasy, or regular fantasy, this is the book for you. It is sort of a mix between Graceling, Throne of Glass and its own amazing elements. And like I said, don’t go by the synopsis, the book is so much better than the description makes it seem!
Here comes my rant/gossip section, which is really what I should call it instead of spoilers… Raisa is such a great character, she is so badass but also girly at times. I have to admit I was also a hardcore Amon (her friend and guard) and Raisa shipper in the first book (if you have read the series you know why I changed my mind). Han is also amazing, I love the magic element, and the fact that he is descendent from the Demon King makes the whole thing more impressive. Again, if you have read the series, I would just like to say that I love Crow (he comes in later), and him and hands friendship is too adorable. Every time I read this book I am surprised by how young the characters are supposed to be. Raise is only 15 in this book! But honestly when I am reading I imagine them older, and since it doesn’t state their ages that often, it is easy to pretend they aren’t that young. I could really go on forever gossiping about this book and these characters, so I will leave it at that, and just tell you to go out and read this book!
Have you read The Demon King? What is you favourite high fantasy novel? le the know in the comments.