Kris and I went to the bookstore not too long ago. I still had a decent amount of gift cards left over from Christmas, so we decided to buy more books that we have no room for.
I’m sure you all know that I love the Warriors series by Erin Hunter. It’s a middle grade series about wild cats. The first book of this now 35-plus-book series came out when I was 11-years-old. I started reading it then and have gotten behind in the series, but I try to catch up when I can.
I’m on the first book of the fourth series (the writers are currently on the seventh series), but I only have books 1-3 of the fourth series (there are six books in each series).
Every time we go to the bookstore I check the kids section to see if books 4-6 are in hardcover. Since they’re older, they’re all in paperback. But I have books 1-3 in hardcover and I like it to be uniform on my bookshelf.
Anyway, I probably have to order them online, but I turned around and noticed the second book of the seventh series had just come out. Kris and I picked it up and was looking at the list of characters in the beginning.
There are four clans with so many cats in each other, plus other characters, so there’s always a little of cats, their rank, and their home. I’ve always enjoyed reading the names, but the main reason I picked it up was because I was curious about Firestar.
Firestar was the main character in the first series. He found his way into the wild in the very first book and climbed up the ranks of his Clan and became leader. He found a mate, had kittens, protected his Clan and friends, etc.
The second series and beyond aren’t written with Firestar as the main character, but he was always there. He was the leader of the Clan, after all. That, and the second series are about his kids and then the next series is about his grandkids and so on.
Anyway, so I don’t confuse you guys further (I hope most of you are following me… it’s a huge series and it’s hard to explain), I’ll get to the point.
The latest book, the second book of the seventh series, did not have Firestar as the leader. In fact, he wasn’t listed at all.
In other words, he died.
I have no idea when he died since I’m so far behind in the series, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say my heart broke. I felt as though my childhood shattered, as dramatic as that may sound.
Then Kris noticed (and had to mention to me even though I was already crying in public…) that Sandstorm, Firestar’s mate wasn’t there either. So she must have died as well. Graystripe, Firestar’s best friend, was in the elder den, which means he won’t last much longer.
I teared up again when I told my mother I cried in Barnes & Noble over a book I hadn’t read and even as I’m writing this post I’m tearing up again. (I’m a girl, guys. Cut me some slack.)
But the thing is, I’m amazed that Firestar’s death, even though I haven’t even read it yet, affected me so much.
I grew up following Firestar’s story. Warriors was the book series that got me into reading in the first place. Erin Hunter was the author(s) who opened my eyes to the wonderful world of reading and writing.
I never thought Firestar would ever die. He was the one who started it all. He was the protagonist for a while, after all. He’s immortal, right? It’s the seventh series, the timeline for the books must span over years and years. They’re writing about a brand new generation, so it makes sense that Firestar is no longer there, even though he had nine lives (from being leader).
But I’m still in shock.
And, if I’m reacting to his death like this now, what’s going to happen when I actually read that scene in… well, I don’t know what book he actually dies in.
This is a crappy feeling, but I love it at the same time. It means this series has a special place in my heart even though I was only 11 when it began and I haven’t been able to keep up with it as quickly as I would have liked. I’m not 23-years-old and crying over the series in the kids section at Barnes & Noble. How silly does that sound?
I guess I have nothing else to say but thank you to Erin Hunter, every single one of them who created these books and allowed my imagination and creativity to run wild (no pun intended, but I have to say that was pretty clever!).
Now excuse me while I go start the next book and anticipate this dreadful moment…
Have you read the Warriors series? Is there a special book or series that has a permanent spot in your heart? Let me know in the comments below!