Book Review: The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima

The Demon King, by Cinda Williams Chima, is the first book within the Seven Realms series. The series follows multiple protagonists with the main two being reformed thief Hanson “Cuffs” Alister and princess heir, Raisa ana’Marianna. While the two protagonists have next to nothing in common aside from living in the same city you know that almost no authors would create two protagonists and not have them interact.

I’ll start with Raisa’s P.O.V. first because I personally like it less and I want to get it over with. Being the heir to the throne in her nation Raisa is expected to marry the second she is eligible because this is fantasy medieval Europe and how else would you start teenage rebellion without giving the protagonist something to rebel against? Anyway Raisa’s half of the story basically trying to figure out what kind of Queen she wants to be and which of the two men in her life she likes more; Amon, the son of the captain of the guard and her childhood friend or Micah Bayar, son of the high wizard and a powerful mage in his own right. Ironically, Raisa can’t be with either of them due to age-old magical ceremonies as well as politics. Nothing really gets resolved in this book however because this series has four books and there wouldn’t be a plot if everything got solved in book one.

Now onto my favorite character of the novel Han. Hanson as mentioned above is a reformed thief. Not mentioned above however is the fact that Han was actually the Streetlord of Ragmarket which is basically the equivalent of being a mob boss in real life. This isn’t really relevant to what I’m going to talk about but I just wanted to mention it. Anyway Han’s half of the story is more complicated than Raisa’s which is funny because her half involves politics. Han’s story is two fold; part of it involves him trying to find a legal way to make money to support his family while the other is more complicated. Essentially one day Han and his friend Dancer were on a sacred mountain and found some wizards setting fire to it. In order to stop them Han threatens to put an arrow through their leader and makes him hand over his amulet which is the source of a wizards power in this series. The other half of Han’s story is the tragedies that start occurring because he stole said amulet. 

Personally, I think the reason I liked Han’s character so much was because of his struggle of trying to find honest work, which as someone in the latter half of high school I can sort of relate to. Or it could be my obsession with gentleman thieves showing up, one of the two.

All in all, I think that this book is a pretty good one if you like high fantasy novels.

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima is available to check out from the Mission Viejo Library. It is also available to download for free from Libby.

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