'Long Shadows'

Long Shadows
AuthorErin Hunter
Cover artistWayne McLoughlin
CountryUnited States
SeriesWarriors: Power of Three
GenreChildren's literature
Fantasy novel
Publication date
November 25, 2008
Media typePrint (Hardback)
Preceded byEclipse 
Followed bySunrise 

Long Shadows is a children's fantasy novel, the fifth book in Erin Hunter's Warriors: Power of Three, and was widely released on November 25, 2008. The book follows the adventures of Hollyleaf, Lionblaze, and Jayfeather. The book has sold over 250,000 copies.[1]

Plot summary[]

When Sol persuades almost all of ShadowClan to give up belief in StarClan, Tawnypelt takes her kits Flamepaw, Tigerpaw, and Dawnpaw to ThunderClan, hoping to find refuge there, stating that she and her kits did not want to be part of a Clan that does not believe in StarClan. In hope of helping ShadowClan, Jaypaw, along with Tigerpaw, Flamepaw, Dawnpaw, Hollyleaf and Lionblaze, create a fake sign from StarClan to show Blackstar StarClan is real. Blackstar is not convinced until the fake sign turns real when Raggedstar and Runningnose come to tell Blackstar to get rid of Sol and to still believe in StarClan.

A greencough outbreak begins in ThunderClan, but the Clan is short of the remedy, catmint: in the previous battle with WindClan, cats trampled and killed the supply. Jaypaw has a dream telling him there is a fresh supply in WindClan territory. Jaypaw asks Lionblaze to fetch the catmint. Lionblaze initially refuses because of dreams where he kills Heatherpaw in the tunnels, but as the outbreak gets worse, he finally goes. Lionblaze gets the catmint and gives it to Jaypaw, but not without a tension-filled encounter with Heatherpaw, now called Heathertail. Soon the Clan is healed and Jaypaw finally receives his full medicine cat name, Jayfeather.

At the same time, Jaypaw falls asleep with the scratched stick he had found previously; in his dream, he has travelled back to a time before the Clans. The lake territories are inhabited by a group of cats who loosely resemble a Clan, with sharpclaws being the equivalent of a Clan warrior. Jaypaw awakes as a young sharpclaw (warrior) called Jay's Wing. The Tribe is being threatened by human expansion and holds a vote to move to the mountains. Jaypaw realizes that this group of cats becomes the Tribe of Rushing Water, so he casts the deciding vote to send the group to the mountains eventually inhabited by the Tribe, before he awakes in the present time again.

Then, during a storm, the camp catches fire. Jayfeather, Lionblaze, Hollyleaf, and Squirrelflight are trapped. Squirrelflight makes it through the flames and drags a stick through in an attempt to save her kits, but needs some help. Ashfur leaps in and drags it all the way through. Just as Lionblaze leaps on, though, Ashfur blocks the way. Squirrelflight begs him to let them through, but Ashfur tells her and the other three that he never forgave her for choosing Brambleclaw over him. He also reveals that he was the one who helped Hawkfrost set the trap for Firestar to show her the pain of losing a loved one as he had lost her. He says that he will now kill her kits in another attempt to hurt her. Squirrelflight then reveals a crucial secret: that he cannot hurt her that way because they are not her kits. She explains how she kept the secret from Brambleclaw and the whole of ThunderClan. Ashfur lets them live, but he threatens to tell her secret, and she is shocked that Ashfur would betray her. Knowing this, Jayfeather, Hollyleaf and Lionblaze no longer believe they are the Three.

The fire burns out and all the cats help get the camp set up again. Three days before the Gathering, Ashfur asks Firestar if he can go. Hollyleaf, Lionblaze, Jayfeather, and Squirrelflight are worried that he is going to publicly announce their secret. Between then and the day of the Gathering, the three warn Ashfur that he will regret it if he reveals the secret. Although he is frightened, he refuses to listen to them. Right before the Gathering, the patrol of warriors going notices that both Ashfur and Squirrelflight are missing. On the way to the Gathering, they see Ashfur's body lying in the WindClan stream as if he had drowned. They take him back to camp and set him for vigil. Leafpool notices a slit in his neck, suggesting he was murdered. After the Gathering, Firestar announces that Ashfur's death was unknown and suspects a cat from ThunderClan may have killed him, and the three see Squirrelflight looking scared and holding her breath. The three vow to keep the recent events involving them, Squirrelflight, and Ashfur a secret.


Horn Book Review said that Long Shadows moves very slowly, but that fans who have read the previous books would still enjoy it.


  1. ^ "Big fall children's books.(On-Sale Calendar)(Calendar)". AccessMyLibrary. Publishers Weekly. July 21, 2008. Retrieved 14 July 2010.

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