Book Review: The Pillars of the World (Tir Alainn #1) by Anne Bishop


Goodreads synopsis:

 The youngest in a long line of witches, Ari senses things are changing for the worse. For generations, her kin have tended the Old Places, keeping the land safe and fertile. Now, she finds herself torn between the world of mortals and the world of Fae, who ignore what occurs in the mortal world, for the roads between the two lands are vanishing into thin air.

I began ‘The Pillars of the World’ with an open mind because many fans of the Black Jewels series online pointed out that Tir Alainn wasn’t as good and Tir Alainn fans claim that you have to be open to it.  I didn’t really know what to expect and I did enjoy the book, especially at first.  I found it a light read but as time wore on, my views on it changed a bit.  I’m going to start with what I liked about it first though.

I adored Ari.  I thought that she was a great lead character and she was well-developed. I really did feel for her, alone in her cottage.  The big bad of the series – Adolfo – was given a point of view early on which made him much more menacing than any other villain I had read by Bishop.  Seriously, he was a great villain and he was reasonably well-developed too so the reader knows why he is the way he is.  Many of his scenes and thought processes are disturbing to read and are graphic, so I wouldn’t recommend this to the lighthearted.  Another point of view that I thought was brilliant in this book was Morag.  She is Death’s Mistress and can kill people at will.  She became my favourite character of the entire series.

Now onto the bad.  The love triangle was predictable, and became more and more predictable as the book went on.  I also didn’t like what I call the petty evilness of certain characters in this book (and the rest of the series for that matter) – I would have liked to have seen some character growth, but this isn’t a spoiler review so I’m not going to name names.

Despite the predictable resolution to the love triangle, the ending of the book is actually quite good.  I did kind of predict that it would happen, but like what happens to Janelle at the end of Daughter of the Blood in the Black Jewels Series, the end is better because you see it coming.  You spend most of the book dreading it.  The end provides some great set up for the next book in the series and a secret is revealed that makes the treatment of witches by society and the fae even more awful.


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