Book Review: Queen of Storms


Title: Queen of Storms

Series: The Fireman Saga # 2

Author: Raymond E Feist

Publication: 2020


Hatushaly and his young wife Hava have arrived in the prosperous trading town of Beran’s Hill to restore and reopen the fire-damaged Inn of the Three Stars. They are also preparing for the popular midsummer festival, where their friends Declan and Gwen will be wed.

A series of horrific events shatters the peace of Beran’s Hill, bringing death and devastation and unleashing monstrous forces. Once more, the Greater Realms of Tembria are threatened—and nothing will ever be the same again.


Queen of Storms is the second volume in Raymond E Feist’s trilogy, The Firemane Saga. The book picks up shortly after the end of the first volume, King of Ashes, with Hatu and Hava having settled down as innkeepers in Barons Landing.

Together with their new friends Decland and Gwen, they live a calm, happy life together. 

ocean under gray cloudy sky
Photo by Tatiana on

Queen of Storms is another book I read on its 2020 release with the intent of reviewing, but… good intentions and all that.

Like the first book, King of Ashes, it’s split between several points of view.

Unsurprisingly, the domestic bliss we encounter at the beginning of the story won’t last, and the group will be split and forced onto their separate journeys. 

The three main POVs are Hatushali, Hava, and Declan, but there are a few minor ones as well.     

Like in King of Ashes, Declan continues to be my favorite character, and his development goes from strength to strength. 

His character arc is glaringly obvious but entertaining, and the plot in his part of the book is the only time it feels like things are moving forward.

Havas POV is also good, and she has some decent development. However, when I read Queen of Storms, I had recently read a stand-alone novel in Feist’s Rift War Cycle, The King’s Buccaneer. 

Im won’t say the plot in Queen of Storms felt like a rehash of that story, but there are similarities—big ones. Enough that, if you read them back to back, it feels a little too similar. 

That feeling isn’t helped by the fact that, if you listen to the audiobooks, both novels have the same narrator. Unfortunately, he voices several characters in a way that makes them seem identical to the characters in The King’s Buccaneer. They’re not, but they’re not entirely fresh either; if you squint, they could be the same character. 

brown rock formations viewing mountain under white and gray sky
Photo by stein egil liland on

As for our protagonist, unfortunately, Hatushali’s POV is the weakest; not only is it the most predictable, it’s too long. In the first half of the book, he has some decent development and is quite competent and interesting. 

However, the second half is drawn out and brimming with predictable, repetitive twists. They feel unnecessary; as if they’re there to increase the word count, not to benefit Hatu’s story

I have no issues with a slow-paced story or a well-executed twist, or even five. Unfortunately, they’re not good twists; they’re unnecessary delays. They read something like this: 

I know you have questions about this MacGuffin and the mystery surrounding your heritage; you’ll have your answers when we meet person W. Que about forty pages of sea travel and introspective repetitiveness. 

Then we meet person W, have a long conversation where everything we already know is repeated. We get a snippet of new information, after which we’re told we need to reach place X for additional answers. Que another thirty pages of sea travel and introspective repetitiveness. 

We reach place X, where we’re told we need to reach place Z and talk to person Y to get the full story. Sea travel. Introspection. Repetitiveness. 

And so it continues until the predictable cliffhanger where we don’t get any answers at all… because, you know, cliffhanger. 

I think it’s a terrible waste of POV to drag this part of Hatushali’s story out for so long. As it stands, to me, Decland reads as the protagonist of this story. Not so much because he has the greater potential or is a better character; he’s just given more to work with. 

body of water near mountain under cloudy sky
Photo by Presentsquare on

All this makes me slightly worried for the last part of this trilogy. 

In my review of King of Ashes, I wrote that I wouldn’t be surprised if he continued this series beyond this trilogy. From what I can tell, Feist doesn’t seem to have any plans on continuing The Firemane Saga beyond the coming last book in this trilogy, Master of Furies set to release in June 2022. 

That makes me nervous; unless Fesit decides to shock us all with a masterful plot twist that takes our characters in the complete opposite direction to where they seem to be headed in Queen of Storms, it feels like one more book is too short to wrap up everything. 

Of course, a masterful plot twist would be great, and if it happens, I’ll be ecstatic. For now, I’m a bit apprehensive of how he’s going to tie up everything in just one more book. 

All that said, I still think Queen of Storms is a good book. It’s a comfortable read; a well-written fantasy novel by someone who’s got the formula etched in their bones

The plot does move forward quite a bit, and there are some interesting twists and turns. There’s also some good action, and the mythology gets some decent attention, revealing interesting facts about the Fiermanes and their legacy. 

But, as I said with King of Ashes, no wheels are being reinvented with this book. Instead, it’s an easy, laidback read for those days when you want to read high-fantasy but don’t feel like putting in too much effort. 

I enjoyed it, and I have the last installment on pre-order; I’m interested to see how this story ends. But, I’m not jumping up and down in impatient excitement, biting my nails, waiting for the next book to come out. 


In conclusion, I think Queen of Ashes is an entertaining but predictable read; a solid story from an author who understands the genre.

Unfortunately, it suffers from a severe case of Second Book Syndrom.

 As a result, the second half of Queen of Storms drags, weakening the protagonist’s POV with repetitiveness and predictable twists. 

It’s a shame. In between all that predictability and unnecessary delays, the world-building is quite interesting, the mythology intriguing, and the conflicts are entertaining. 

Rating: 6/10

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s