HISTORY OF THE SERIES
Birth of the Firebringer,
the first book in Pierce's series, was released as a hardcover in the United States in 1985. By 1988, it had been translated into Danish and Swedish and uniquely different cover art across four editions. The second book in the series, Dark Moon,
wasn't to appear in hardcover until 1992. Pierce mentions the gap during her interview with Wolfen Moondaughter and Tori Morris in the November 2002 issue of Sequential Tart
"After I finished Birth of the Firebringer, about all I knew about what was going to happen in Volumes 2 and 3 of the trilogy was that in Volume 2 (Dark Moon) the hero, Jan, would become separated from unicorn herd and spend some time in a human city, observing how two-foots (humans) wield and manipulate fire, and that in Volume 3 (The Son of Summer Stars), there would be a huge battle between the unicorns and their ancestral enemies, the wyverns. I also knew that the gryphons would switch sides at some point, becoming allies of the unicorns, but had no idea how or why. It all worked out in the end. Writing a story, for me at least, is an extended exercise in problem-solving. I carry on mental conversations with myself, along the lines of: Here's where Book 1 ended. Here's where I want Book 3 to wind up. Now, how am I going to get there?"
Read the interview in its entirety here
Son of the Summer Stars
, last in the trilogy, was released in hardcover in 1996. By 2001, however, all three books were out of print and hard to find. In 2003, Firebird Books
reintroduced all three in paperback with brand new cover art by Justin Sweet
ABOUT THE FIREBRINGER TRILOGY
Birth of the Firebringer
tells of Jan's initation into the Ring of Warriors via the unicorns' annual pilgrimage to the Mere of the Moon and also of his re-birth as Alm'harat's prophesied Firebringer and of the start of his relationship with Tek; the book also hints at the events that will soon plunge Korr (the unicorn's prince and later king) into madness and tyranny.
takes up the story a year after Jan's accession as prince and tells of his mating with Tek and how, due to a gryphon's attack, he is swept out two a land of two-foots where he discovers fire. Meanwhile, at home in the vale, with Jan given up for dead, Korr's madness wreaks havoc and allows starvation to decimate the herd. Due to Korr's venomous threats to her, Tek is forced to flee to her mother where her and Jan's offspring are born before events in the vale overthrow Korr and allow Tek to return home. Jan escapes and is reunited with Tek.
The Son of Summer Stars
takes up events two years after Dark Moon. The book features events which accumulate with the early decision of the unicorns to regain the Hallow Hills. However Korr's madness rears its ugly head once again, dragging Jan off on a chase which ends in Korr's death & revelations which threaten to undo Jan's and the unicorns' destiny. In Jan's absence, Tek takes charge - and the herd sets off, bringing the 400-year stalemate war with the wyverns to an impending fierce and bloody end. Meanwhile Jan, shocked by his newly found knowledge of Korr's dark secrets, is left desperately wondering how to cope with the situation, and continues wandering and discovers a tribe of unicorns descended from scouts of Halla, the unicorn princess who is his ancient ancestor and who led the new-exiled herd following their defeat at the hands of the wyverns. The unicorns now serve the red Dragons that they visited of behalf of Halla, and with the help with Wyzasukitan, the dragon queen and the daughter of Mellintellinas who originally met with the scouts of Halla, Jan faces up to his responsibilities and the book & trilogy ends with the defeat of the wyverns, the recovery of the Hallow Hills, the resolution of Jan & Tek's paternal sires and the beginning of a new age...