Thursday, February 23, 2023

Audiobook Review: The Fire's Stone by Tanya Huff

The Fire's Stone
Author: Tanya Huff
Narrator: Bill Hensel
Publication: Audible Studios (January 9, 2013)
Length: 11 hours

Description: It was a long fall from Clan Heir to common thief, but Aaron never wanted any part of his father’s brutal outlander reign. In fact, besides coin purses and jewels, there’s very little in all of Cisali that interests Aaron, until he stumbles—quite literally—into a prince’s bedchamber…

Prince Davish of Ischia is a skilled swordsman both on the field and beneath the sheets, at least when he isn’t outrageously drunk. But the wine helps him forget all the ways he’s disappointed his father, his family, and soon enough, his young bride-to-be…

A trained Wizard of the Nine with more raw talent than real-world experience, Princess Chandra has no interest in the politically arranged marriage. She flees to the royal city of Ischia seeking a way out of the union. But there, she discovers something far more shocking than Prince Davish’s rakish reputation…

The Stone of Ischia has been stolen. A powerful talisman, The Stone protects the city from the active volcano that looms over its terraces and streets. Without it, Ischia will be destroyed and the kingdom of Cisali will fall. Its only hope is an unlikely band of heroes—a failed thief, a drunken prince, and a runaway wizard—who must face pirates, powerful magic, and their own carefully guarded secrets in order to find and restore the Stone of Ischia.

My Thoughts: This was an excellent fantasy that combines "coming of age" with coming into self. There are three main characters who are all struggling to find their place in the world.

Aaron is a thief who is likely clinically depressed and who is just looking for a way to die. When he enters the room of an old woman, he meets someone who becomes a friend and a mentor. But when she dies, he sets off on a plan to steal the jewel on the head of the ruler's staff which she carved as a suitable grave gift. And if he dies, oh well.

Prince Davish is the third son who doesn't have a role in the kingdom or the interest or respect of his father. He fills his time becoming an excellent swordsman, a full-time drunk, and an indiscriminate lover of men and women. He surprises himself when he rescues a failed thief from the torture chamber overseen by his younger twin siblings. 

Princess Chandra is a Wizard of the Nine, powerful and rather naive. She has been abandoned emotionally by her grief-stricken father who can't get over the loss of his wife. She thinks her only value is as a wizard. She's determined not to marry which she feels with dilute her power. When her father plans a marriage with Prince Davish, she is not at all in favor and is determined to see Davish to convince him that they won't suit.

However, since someone has stolen the Stone which keeps the volcano the kingdom is built on from exploding, their personal problems will have to wait. When Davish and Aaron are sent to recover the Stone and Chandra tags along, they have a chance to learn a lot about each other and themselves when battling pirates, a churning sea, and a magician who doesn't want to give up the Stone.

I really enjoyed this story which was ably narrated by Bill Hensel. 

I bought this one August 29, 2021. You can buy your copy here.

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