Tough Travels: Missing Heirs

tough travelsI’m back with this fun feature! Tough Travels is a weekly meme hosted by Nathan at Fantasy Review Barn and entails making lists about topics chosen from The Tough Guide to Fantasyland. Make sure to go and check other people’s posts: as I’ve learned last week, they are a pretty great bunch of bloggers! :)

* * *

This week’s feature is MISSING HEIRS, which occur with great frequency. At any given time, half the countries in Fantasyland will have mislaid their crown princess/prince.

  1. aragornAragorn from J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings: let’s get the obvious one out of the way. Aragorn, heir to the throne of Gondor, is a noble warrior – but he’s also somewhere around 80 years old by the time Frodo gets to meet him, though he looks much younger. I never quite understood his feelings of guilt but they seem to be the reason for his absence. Very handsome.
  2. Celaena Sardothien from Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series: I haven’t read Heir of Fire yet (I’ve managed to avoid spoilers so far, I hope I manage to do so until I get my hands on the book), but I’m pretty sure she’s a Fae princess, thought lost and dead by her people. She’s also a kick-ass assassin – have you noticed that there’s “ass” in “assassin”? (my review)
  3. daenerys-targaryenPrince Yarvi from Joe Abercrombie’s Half a King: he’s a great character! Nearly killed by his uncle and then enslaved and sold to row on a galley, Yarvi is a survivor. I love how he evolved and grew! See my review here.
  4. Daenerys Targaryen from George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire: I feel like she’s not so much lost as misplaced – it’s hard to be really lost when you’ve got a great army and three dragons tagging along, no?
  5. Lan Madragoran from Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time series: he’s the only surviving heir to the kingdom of Malkier. He also has a number of really cool names: Lord of the Seven Towers, Defender of the Wall of First Fires, Bearer of the Sword of the Thousand Lakes, and so on. And I really liked the beginnings of his story with Nynaeve (And there it goes – I just read a spoiler concerning THAT particular story. Goddammit.). I really have to finish this series before I do more irreparable damage.

 * * *

Who are your favourite lost rulers?

What handsome prince or lovely princess have I forgotten to include in my list? :)

  • I had not even thought about lost heirs in fantasy books, but it’s really a thing isn’t it? How do so many places just misplace their heir, and these poor heirs always end up having such a hard life.

    I haven’t read Heir of Fire yet, and I seriously mean to, and it is so hard to avoid spoilers about it. As soon as I see the title in a post now I have to question whether or not I need to stop reading. There are a couple of books on here I haven’t read and I am feeling totally tempted to go out and pick them up now, but I’ll try and be sensible.

    • Kaja

      This is why I really like this Tough Travels meme: it makes me think about tropes and repeating features of fantasy!
      I’ve been avoiding Heir of Fire reviews like the plague, seriously, my eyes have become so accustomed to skimming over the potential spoilers I probably wouldn’t be able to read one even if I wanted to. :)
      Thanks for stopping by, Becky! (I totally misspelled “stopping” as “stooping” just now!)

  • Great list. Love every pick.

    • Kaja

      Thanks, Wendell! :)
      Glad you stopped by.

  • Excellent choice with Daenerys – she never occurred to me at all. A really good one.
    I also had Aragorn and the Half King.
    Lynn :D

    • Kaja

      Thanks :) I like Nathan’s point – basically everyone in ASOIAF is a lost heir to *something*, so there’s no point in listing them all :)

  • I didn’t even think of Yarvi or Dany. But you’re so right, they both count. Great list!

    • Kaja

      Thanks :) I really liked Yarvi and his sneakiness so he was the first I thought of after Aragorn!

  • I had Aragorn and Daenerys as well, but completely overlooked Lan.

    • Kaja

      I really liked Lan as a character – more than the three boys, anyway, so he was an abvious choice for me :)

  • A rare thing has happened today, i have actually read at least one book from every series you listed. That happens so rarely. Granted, both WoT and Maas’ series I have only read the first book in but still pretty cool.

    • Kaja

      Well this either means you’ve got a great taste in books or that my list is so obvious and predictable that everyone has read the books! I like the first option better :)

  • I’ve only read Throne of Glass but we are in complete agreement on the princess thing. She’s OBVIOUSLY the lost heir to a certain famous territory…can’t wait to see how she takes back her throne! :D

    • Kaja

      Err probably by killing everyone standing in her way? :) I wonder if it happens in book 3!