Child of the Prophecy is the third book in the Sevenwaters series, following Daughter of the Forest and Son of the Shadows. I loved both books so I decided to finish reading the other ones in the series. This one occurs a generation after Son of the Shadows. Fainne is Sorcha’s granddaughter.
Here’s the summary from Macmillan’s website:
Magic is fading… and the ways of Man are driving the Old Ones to the West, beyond the ken of humankind. The ancient groves are being destroyed, and if nothing is done, Ireland will lose its essential mystic core.
The prophecies of long ago have foretold a way to prevent this horror, and it is the Sevenwaters clan that the Spirits of Eire look to for salvation. They are a family bound into the lifeblood of the land, and their promise to preserve the magic has been the cause of great joy to them… as well as great sorrow.
It is up to Fainne, daughter of Niamh, the lost sister of Sevenwaters, to solve the riddles of power. She is the shy child of a reclusive sorcerer, and her way is hard, for her father is the son of the wicked sorceress Oonagh, who has emerged from the shadows and seeks to destroy all that Sevenwaters has striven for. Oonagh will use her granddaughter Fainne most cruelly to accomplish her ends, and stops at nothing to see her will done.
Will Fainne be strong enough to battle this evil and save those she has come to love?
I have expressed my love for the first two books in the series multiple times here on the blog and I even included Liadan in my list of Characters I’d Set Up With My Friends, that’s how much I love her. So I had high hopes for the third installment in this series, which unfortunately, fell short of my expectations. I wanted to love Fainne as much as I loved Sorcha and Liadan but I just couldn’t. She has just as much strength of character as her grandmother and aunt but she’s more confused in terms of the path that she should follow and the things that she wants in life. Add to that the fact that the love story in this one is more muted that those in the first two. Also, Fainne was raised in seclusion by her father and in her childhood, she lacked the warmth and love provided by the Sevenwaters clan, which I think is a significant aspect of the first two books.
I think that at first, this series was meant to be a trilogy but Juliet Marillier came up with a new installment – Heir to Sevenwaters – and there’s another one coming out later this year. That said, I think that Child of the Prophecy is a necessary part of the whole arc. The storytelling is just as beautiful as with the other books, it’s just that I wasn’t able to connect with the main character. I know I mentioned that the first two books weren’t easy to read because of everything the main characters had to go through and the same goes for this one but since I didn’t connect with Fainne, I wasn’t really rooting for her as much as I’d want to. Still, I highly recommend this series to all epic fantasy fans out there. It’s a lovely, lovely story and it has made me curious about the rest of Juliet Marillier’s novels.
I’m currently reading Heir to Sevenwaters and I have to say that I like it much better than Child of the Prophecy. Go Clodagh!