|"Yes. We are Clan cats. We share the same ancestors. It would be an honor to stand beside you. And we'd always be grateful for any territory you gave us."|
|— Leafstar accepting Tigerheart's offer for new territory in Darkest Night, chapter 2|
- Special thanks to Cherith Baldry
- Erin Hunter’s #1 bestselling Warriors series continues! Discover more epic adventures in the fourth book in this sixth action-packed story arc. Each hardcover also includes a double-sided jacket with a bonus poster!
- SkyClan has returned to its rightful place among the other four warrior Clans, hoping to find a new territory to call home. But not every cat is convinced that this is where SkyClan belongs. The careful balance around the lake is more fragile than ever before—and the fate of all the warrior Clans remains uncertain.
- With more than twenty million copies sold, the Warriors series has been flying off the shelves for fourteen years and counting. The latest series, A Vision of Shadows, is the perfect introduction for readers new to the Warriors world, while existing fans will be thrilled to return to the days of Bramblestar and ThunderClan, after the events of Omen of the Stars.
- Each hardcover in the Vision of Shadows series will also include a double-sided jacket with a bonus poster!
Detailed Plot Summary
- An unnamed yellow tom is sitting on rocks reflecting on his life. Needletail appears to him. He is happy to see her, but can tell something’s wrong. Needletail tells him that she trusted the wrong cat and needs to make things right. She asks for his help. the yellow tom immediately says he’ll help in any way he can, then notices the glow in Needletail’s body and realizes she’s dead.
- ShadowClan has returned to their camp, but RiverClan and SkyClan are still staying with ThunderClan. This leads to the camp being overcrowded and rises tension within it. Ivypool tells Twigpaw that it’s time for her assessment. She is excited, then questions if she really wants to stay in ThunderClan.
- Alderheart and Leafpool are checking over Tinycloud, who is expecting kits. Alderheart comments that her kits will be the first SkyClan cats born by the lake, which causes Leafpool to pull him aside and tells him that he shouldn’t have said that, as they don’t know if SkyClan will be staying. Alderheart is shocked by this, and Leafpool reminds him that not every cat likes having SkyClan around, and the Clans are unlikely to be willing to give up territory for them. Alderheart insists that StarClan brought them here, and no cat could think territory is more important than StarClan. Leafpool questions this, looking to Sparkpelt in particular. Alderheart is reluctant to believe that his sister wants SkyClan to leave.
- On the way to the Gathering, Alderheart casually asks how she feels on the matter. Sparkpelt tells him that only the “real” Clans should live by the lake, and SkyClan should go back to where they belong, as Darktail is gone and the gorge is free. Alderheart is taken back by this, and asks if StarClan and his visions mean anything to her. Sparkpelt believes that StarClan wanted them to find SkyClan, but never said they needed to move into their territory. Alderheart joins Leafpool, who tries to comfort him. She tells him that whatever the Clans decide about SkyClan, he must accept it. Alderheart refuses. As they settle, the other cats are all very uneasy. Leafstar remains on the ground with her Clan rather than join the other leaders in the tree.
- The cats below question if Rowanstar should even be up there and blame him for Darktail and the losses they suffered. They ask if ShadowClan is even a Clan anymore. Rowanstar tries to defend himself by listing the warriors ShadowClan has lost, including the many that disappeared not knowing what happened to them. A RiverClan warrior, Lakeheart, comments that they probably went with the rogues. Rowanstar is furious at this suggestion and says it’s true that Sleekwhisker, Yarrowleaf, and Spikefur left with them, but the others were killed trying to escape Darktail. Other cats support this argument, and Violetpaw calls out that Needletail died for her and her Clanmates. The cats below start yowling that they will never forgive ShadowClan, and Rowanstar has no right to be leader.
- Harestar points out that Onestar was the one who brought Darktail’s vengeance to the Clans, and Darktail is responsible for his actions, no one else. He asks that instead of blaming others, they remember the cats they’ve lost and remember Onestar for facing his past and giving his last life to kill Darktail, his own son. This changes the mood very quickly, and the cats become solemn.
- Mistystar comments that WindClan chose well in making Harestar leader, as he did well at calming the angry cats down. She then announces that this will be RiverClan’s last gathering for a while, as they will be closing their borders to take the time to recover. The RiverClan cats start to leave. When questioned about SkyClan, Mistystar says the other leaders can decide, but should be careful about allowing more strange cats to live by the lake.
- Leafstar joins the other leaders at last and tells them about how Darktail took over the gorge. Tigerheart speaks for Rowanstar and offers SkyClan a piece of their territory, which Leafstar gratefully accepts.
- The next day, Twigpaw has passed her assessment. SkyClan is preparing to leave to settle in the territory ShadowClan gave them, and Violetpaw is going with them. Twigpaw decides to go with them as well.
- That night, Violetpaw dreams she is in the place where Alderheart and Needletail secretly brought her and Twigpaw as kits. She sees Needletail running and starts chasing her, begging her to stop. Needletail pauses and says, “Why chase me now? You made your choice.” Violetpaw wakes up in the new SkyClan camp with Hawkwing and Twigpaw. Violetpaw feels that she let Needletail die and is afraid to tell Hawkwing.
- The next day, Hawkwing goes hunting with Twigpaw and Violetpaw, and tells them about Pebbleshine. Violetpaw is happy and feels like she belongs somewhere at last.
- Twigpaw is out collecting twigs for the camp with Dewpaw and Finpaw, and it’s incredibly windy. A branch breaks off and falls toward Finpaw, but Twigpaw pulls him out of the way and it ends up falling on his tail and traps him. While Dewpaw runs back to camp to get cats to lift the branch, Twigpaw goes to ShadowClan to get Puddleshine. They’re unable to lift the branch, so Puddleshine gets a sharp rock to cut Finpaw’s tail free, otherwise he will die of shock. Twigpaw is very worried about him.
- Back in ThunderClan, Alderheart misses Twigpaw. Sparkpelt flirts with Larksong. Fernsong tells Ivypool that he wants to have kits, but she says she isn’t ready, as she wants to continue being able to hunt and patrol. Fernsong offers to move into the nursery in her place, and she could only come when she has to feed the kits. Ivypool says she’ll think about it.
- Leafstar decides to send a patrol back to the gorge to search for their missing Clanmates. She sends Hawkwing, Violetpaw, Rabbitleap, Blossomheart, and Molewhisker of ThunderClan.
- The medicine cats go to their Moonpool meeting. Mothwing and Willowshine do not attend. They share a dream with StarClan. Firestar tells them they must bring RiverClan back. Hollyleaf appears and goes to Leafpool. Echosong arrives and delivers a prophecy: “The dark sky must not herald a storm”. Leafpool decides to join SkyClan as their temporary medicine cat upon Jayfeather's suggestion.
- Hawkwing’s patrol crosses a thunderpath. Violetpaw freezes in the middle of the road and causes a car to crash into another. That night, Violetpaw dreams of Needletail again. She wakes up and sees her spirit. She runs to her and asks if she’s dead. Needletail says she is and turns away, leading her deeper into the forest. Violetpaw thinks she wants her to follow her. Needletail disappears, and Violetpaw returns to the others.
- Twigpaw and Dewpaw are collecting moss for the dens. It’s noted that Finpaw’s tail is healing well, but his spirits are low. Plumwillow stayed with him until he asked her to leave, and now refuses to have visitors. Dewpaw asks if Twigpaw likes Finpaw, as her fur twitches when she talks about him. Twigpaw insists they’re just friends. She decides to visit Finpaw, even though he tells her to leave. He’s very down about losing part of his tail. They start talking about Dewpaw’s snoring, and a vigil for his tail, and this cheers him up. Leafpool comes to dress his wound, and Finpaw begs her to let Twigpaw stay. She distracts him from the pain.
- Alderheart is frustrated because Bramblestar won’t act on the prophecy until they fully understand its meaning. Rowanstar believes that the dark sky means SkyClan, and has increased border patrols. Harestar thinks it means the current situation will get worse, and has also stepped up patrols. The medicine cats go to Leafstar to get her opinion. She says SkyClan is too busy settling to think about prophecies. Alderheart sees Twigpaw, and is surprised that she’s quick to dismiss him, as she’s playing with Finpaw. The medicine cats go to RiverClan to deliver the prophecy, but a border patrol refuses to let them speak with Mistystar or the medicine cats.
- The SkyClan patrol reaches Barley’s farm. They reunite with Barley, Cherrytail, and Cloudmist. Hawkwing asks them to come back to the lake with them, but Cherrytail and Cloudmist hesitate and decide to give an answer on their way back from the gorge.
- Sandynose is teaching Twigpaw to climb trees, but she keeps daydreaming about Finpaw. She falls from a tree and hits her head. She’s taken to the medicine den, and Finpaw sits with her. When Leafpool leaves and they both decide they feel fine, they sneak out of camp to go to the place Twigpaw and Violetpaw met as kits. They end up spying on Tigerheart and Dovewing meeting secretly, talking about how Tigerheart may need to take Rowanstar’s place. Tigerheart promises they’ll work this out.
- Alderheart is collecting herbs by the lakeshore when Willowshine runs over to tell him about a vision she had about a six toed cat, and they go to the other Clans to tell the other medicine cats. In ShadowClan, they’re present when Scorchfur and Tawnypelt break into a fight.
- The SkyClan patrol reaches the gorge, and they find Mintfur, Nettlesplash, and their kits, Gravelpaw, Palepaw, Nectarpaw, and Fringepaw, as well as Fidgetpaw, the lost medicine cat apprentice. They tell them that Frecklewish has been captured and lives in a Twoleg hive, so Hawkwing and the others set out to rescue her.
- Back in SkyClan lake territory, there’s a border dispute. Fallowfern crosses the border when collecting herbs for Leafpool. Finpaw and Twigpaw go hunting together. He’s upset because he can’t hunt right with half a tail, and Twigpaw comforts him and claims he’ll be the best warrior in SkyClan. Later, Twigpaw accidentally chases a squirrel over the ThunderClan border and runs straight into Ivypool. She tells her that she saw Dovewing meeting with Tigerheart, and Twigpaw realizes that she misses ThunderClan.
- Alderheart sneaks off to twolegplace to look for a six toed cat. He meets Zelda, Loki, and an aggressive cat named Jasper, but the kittypets are unable to help. As Alderheart makes his way back, he gets attacked by Jasper, but Sparkpelt appears to fight off the kittypet. She reveals that she’d been following Alderheart, and that she really likes Larksong, admitting she’s been very focused on him lately. On their way back, they’re attacked by a dog, where it bites Sparkpelt’s leg and Alderheart attacks the dog and drives it away. Sparkpelt is impressed by his bravery.
- Elsewhere, the SkyClan search patrol, they convince Frecklewish to jump out the window of her apartment. She lands safely, and the cats retreat with her.
- Back in SkyClan, Sandynose asks Twigpaw to stay away from Finpaw because she’s distracting him from his training. She’s angry at this. A ThunderClan patrol arrives and reveals that Dovewing has gone missing. Back in ThunderClan, many cats don’t say much about Dovewing’s disappearance, as they know how much time she and Tigerheart spent together when he stayed with them. Ivypool is worried that they think she’s a traitor. Fernsong comforts her. There’s a rockslide in the ThunderClan camp. Falling rocks land on Snowbush, and he breaks a hind leg. They evacuate the camp.
- On the way back, the SkyClan patrol stops at Barley’s farm. Cherrytail and Cloudmist decide to return to SkyClan with them. When they almost reach the lake, Violetpaw sees Needletail again. She leads him to Tree, who is sleeping in his nest. Needletail tells Violetpaw that she is not in StarClan or the Dark Forest, she just finds herself with Tree whenever she opens her eyes. She believes she’s stuck with Tree because he’s important to the Clans. She asks Violetpaw to take him back to the lake with them. She believes if she does this for the Clans, she’ll be able to find StarClan.
- Tree wakes up and flirts with Violetpaw as she tries to explain what Needletail told her. He returns with her to the patrol, and they agree to bring him back to the Clans.
- While training, Sandynose asks Twigpaw to go hunt on her own. Finpaw runs to her, and she tells him that Sandynose told her to stay away from him because she’s effecting his training. Finpaw insists that she’s helped him a lot. Twigpaw says they can hang out when they’re warriors. Finpaw thinks she won’t want to because he’ll be so clumsy with half a tail. Twigpaw promises she will and nothing can keep them from being apart. She admits he’s special to her. She wonders if she’ll ever have the same respect from others in SkyClan as she did in ThunderClan, as Sandynose doesn’t trust her.
- Snowbush has an infection inside his broken leg and he eventually dies.
- At the Gathering, all but RiverClan is present. Rowanstar announces that Tigerheart has gone missing. Rowanstar says that he believed that with Tigerheart, ShadowClan could be strong again. He feels he can no longer hold the Clan together. He says he can no longer lead. He offers SkyClan all of his territory if they will allow he and his Clanmates to join SkyClan. Leafstar agrees. The Clans object to this, saying there must be five Clans.
- The SkyClan patrol return to the camp. They’re shocked and confused to find ShadowClan moving in. Leafstar is about to turn away Tree when Puddleshine notices that he has six toes, and is the cat in the prophecy. Leafstar tells Violetpaw and Twigpaw that it’s time they became warriors.
- Twigpaw leaves the camp to get some air, feeling overwhelmed. Finpaw joins her to make sure she’s okay. They return to camp, and Leafstar names gives Violetpaw's warrior name: Violetshine. She’s about to give Twigpaw her name when she changes her mind and says she wants to go back to ThunderClan. Leafstar is angry with her for making the decision at this time. Sandynose of all cats defends Twigpaw’s decision, saying he’s proud she had the courage to decide, and Hawkwing feels the same. Violetshine is angry with Twigpaw for abandoning her again. Hawkwing comforts her, and Twigpaw promises she’ll always love her and Hawkwing.
- Twigpaw heads out of the camp, and Finpaw says he’s coming with her to ThunderClan. He doesn’t care what Clan he’s in, as long as he’s with her. Bramblestar has not decided if he’ll accept Twigpaw and Finpaw, due to the possibility of swerving loyalties and fickleness, but Alderheart believes he will.
- The medicine cats, Tree, and the remaining ShadowClan cats meet by the lakeshore, in the place where Needletail died and many other ShadowClan cats were drowned by Darktail. Leafpool tells them that Tree has the power to bring dead cats from the darkness so that they can be seen. Tree has been born with this gift to sense the dead and sometimes make them appear.
- Tree then summons many spirits who rise from the lake, including Needletail, Dawnpelt, Beenose, Mistcloud, Lioneye, and Birchbark. Needletail promises Violetshine she was never angry with her, and they will always be sisters. The spirits tell Rowanstar that for ShadowClan to be saved, he must fight for them and find his missing Clanmates. Rowanstar refuses, saying he failed his Clan and his kin, and asks to be called Rowanclaw from now on. The spirit cats disappear. Alderheart wonders what is left of ShadowClan, and wonders if they have enough time to be saved.
- A reprint occurred in December of 2017, attributing the actual author (Kate Cary), rather than Cherith Baldry, who the first copy is dedicated to. This was a mistake on the grounds of the editors.
- Darkest Night (EN), HarperCollins (Hardcover), 7 November 2017
- Darkest Night (EN), HarperCollins (Library), 7 November 2017
- Darkest Night (EN), HarperCollins (e-Book), 7 November 2017
References and Citations
|Darkest Night chapters|
|Prologue • Chapter 1 • Chapter 2 • Chapter 3 • Chapter 4 • Chapter 5 • Chapter 6 • Chapter 7 • Chapter 8 • Chapter 9 • Chapter 10 • Chapter 11 • Chapter 12 • Chapter 13 • Chapter 14 • Chapter 15 • Chapter 16 • Chapter 17 • Chapter 18 • Chapter 19 • Chapter 20 • Chapter 21 • Chapter 22 • Chapter 23 • Bonus Scene|