Select one of the keywords
The Harp of Kings: Warrior Bards #1    by Juliet Marillier order for
Harp of Kings
by Juliet Marillier
Order:  USA  Can
Ace, 2019 (2019)
Softcover, CD, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Being a harpist as well as a longstanding Marillier fan, I pounced on The Harp of Kings, which I read in one sitting. It centers on three trainees, hoping to join Swan Island's elite warrior band, that sends out both teams of warriors and of spies.

Eighteen-year-old Liobhan sings beautifully and plays the whistle. Her brother Brocc is a talented harpist and his singing is out of this world. Bitter Dau, third son of a chieftain, has trained with them - he and Liobhan are extremely competitive with one another.

Because of their talents, and despite their status as trainees, the three are picked, along with the island's chief combat trainer and a warrior/farrier to travel undercover to the southern kingdom of Breifne. Liobhan and Brocc go as traveling minstrels. Dau's role is to to be a mute and to work in the stables.

In Breifne, a historic harp has gone missing and will be needed to anoint a new ruler on Midsummer Day. Brocc seeks for clues in the community of druids, where he finds a possible contender for the throne. Liobhan clashes with bullying Crown Prince Rodan and befriends a lonely young princess. Dau observes all.

The quest to find the Harp of Kings leads Brocc to a forest wisewoman and to Fair Folk under attack. The harp is found, and there is resolution for the kingdom of Breifne, but both love and heartbreak for Liobhan. I can't wait for more of the Warrior Bards.

Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.

Find more Fantasy books on our Shelves or in our book Reviews