The Heir by Kiera Cass is the fourth book in a The Selection series which are about the monarchy of the country of Illéa. This book was published only this year and was one of the most anticipated books of the year in many readers’ lists and it has the worst rating total in goodreads from all four books.
The Heir takes place eighteen years after the first three Selection books and is about Eadlyn and her preparation to become the queen of Illéa as well as dealing with the consequences of her parent’s actions and dissolution of castes. It is a story of princess taking one for the team to pretend that she is searching for a husband and divert everyone’s attention from the real trouble in the country, which is often working nowadays as well.
Although this book is claimed as the fourth part of the series, there’s no need at all to read the previous three as nothing that happened in there is of importance in this book. The only things one wouldn’t be able to understand, would be the little smirks Eadlyn’s parents make about some things on Selection and a bit of the politic situation background, which though is explained well enough in this book.
Straight away – let’s get to the point – I did not think that this book was well written. After the first book (which was wonderful) that checked in on all the little details of the Selection, gave us full review on what the girls did – their training, tasks, dates, conversations and free time, as well as on what the prince did – his work on the laws, his travels and helping father, his father’s terrible punishments, dates and alone time; this book gave us nothing both about the Princess and the boys.
The Heir concentrates on the other side – the side of the Princess, yes, but that doesn’t mean that we cannot get details. She is claiming to work and have no time for dates, but we don’t actually know anything about her important works and, sometimes seems like she is just pretending to do that to get that important and busy air around her (which based on her personality and character wouldn’t be a surprise), and even the dates were not described as fully and emotionally as it could’ve been, it just felt rushed.
Then there are the boys. During America’s Selection, there was a lot of action and things to do for the Selected, but in this book, one of them even says that he feels like on holiday – really? They don’t give any lessons and tasks, don’t make them spend time on something that would show their inner selves and then are surprised that some of them turn out to be not as cute as they seemed.
I think that all this had so much potential, especially because Eadlyn is so different from America, and could have made a really breathtaking story, but it didn’t, because it missed out on all those details that would suck you into the story.
Don’t misunderstand me – I still did enjoy the book and it was a quick and easy read, but it just wasn’t as good as the other ones in the series. But then again, I have to ask myself – would I rather read a magnificent book that is slow (yeah, LOTR, I’m looking at you) or and easy light read that doesn’t leave me fulfilled? I might choose be a Princess once to know what happens, but I will never ever give up being hobbit for many times because every time it is an adventure.
Before I talk about characters of this book, I just want to say that the names of the people were ridiculous, I cannot remember anyone’s name, except for Ahren and I’m not even sure, if that is correct. Perhaps those are traditional American names and nobody else has any problems with them, but I don’t think that book in future means that people have the most unusual names there are. And yes, you might say that it is the Royal family, they have to do things like that, because their children are special and so on, but look at a real monarchy (Prince George?) – it is a tradition with traditional names, which in my opinion makes much more sense and gives the touch of reality to it.
Eadlyn was really frustrating and spoiled at the beginning, but after the first few chapters she changed and acted more like an arrogant child, which was fine, I saw where her personality came from and it made sense for an immature and spoiled teenager to act like that. But honestly – her little brother acted more mature than she did, which didn’t seem real – she would get all the responsibility and be the queen, when actually she is just brat who cannot even talk to people properly? I mean what strikes me weird is that no one else is going through lessons – what if something really happens to Eadlyn? And why, why nobody even thinks about the little brother who knows everything seemingly a lot better than Eadlyn? But after the beginning when I was just mad at her all the time, the rest of the book was smooth as she was a bit more logical and not as terrible.
I don’t want to give away too much, about the Selection process, I find some of the judgement calls the Princess make silly (which later is approved by the press) and her ways of choosing who will stay – wrong. It doesn’t matter, if she leads the Selection process by heart or mind, she should still try to at least talk to some people she eliminates (for a person claimed to be so smart, she should get that it is one of the things people think is logical), not to mention that anyone would want the nicest people to stick, even, if that anyone doesn’t intend to marry.
My favourite character in this book definitely is Henri, I think that I would already be learning his language and getting married to him, though I might say that Erik is not that far behind in the eyes of the Princess, at least it seems so to me and it makes me sad, because Henri is everything I would love (and that includes speaking Finnish)! Every time I read a paragraph about him, I’m just smiling and happy that he exists in this book. It is a bit funny that Henri is such cutie pie when the first real life Finnish person I can think of is Kimi Räikkönen also known as Ice Man. Yeah, you heard me!
I also had a hard time accepting America, I felt like I am reading about a different character and it is not the same Lady America I grew to like in the first three books. The author really tried to make her as good as the previous queen, she just missed the fact that America doesn’t have to be the same to be as good.
Nevertheless, I still finished the book hence it was an easy and fast read and I liked the previous ones and I will still read the next one, once it will be out! But for this one, the ending actually was the best, Eadlyn started to deal with the boys in a proper manner and the book ended with her decision that is a great cliffhanger. On the other hand I didn’t appreciate much what happened with America, perhaps because I’ve been with her already for four books and is seems like it still has to be about her, not her daughter.
There are plenty of other little things (like the fact that there isn’t enough explanations, what exactly has happened since America and Maxon got married), but that would be a review worth a video not a blog post! I’m finished with the Selection series for now and expecting the new one for which we don’t even have a title yet. This book though received only two stars out of five on my goodreads profile and I would recommend it only for teenage girls.
Let me know what you thought of The Heir by Kiera Cass – did I miss something really good?
As I said, I have finished these series, so, if you have any suggestions on which series I should continue with, let me know in the comment section bellow! And add me on goodreads to follow what I read!