Monday, September 14, 2015

Review: Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) by Sarah J. Maas

Published: May 7, 2013 Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Format: ebook
Source: Purchased
Goodreads Summary

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

She stood not ten feet from the King of Adarlan. Freedom or death lay at this table. Her past and future were seated on a glass throne.

The Good

When we first meet 18-year old Celaena Sardothien, she is a prisoner, haggard and bitter. She's forgotten what true comfort feels like and her beauty has diminished. She's known as Adarlan's Assassin and the Prince of Adarlan makes her an offer she can't refuse - fight for the title of King's Champion in a competition and be free after four year's service, or rot and die there in the prison in Endovier. Celaena is a lot of fun to read about. She's full of contradictions that make her entertaining. As Choal notes, she can kill you with whatever is handy, yet she's kind-hearted. She's arrogant and tough-as-nails yet a girly-girl that loves shopping and gorgeous dresses. She's intelligent and doesn't trust easily but appears to put her trust in the wrong people. She greatly embodies the assassin, yet at the same time I can tell she has so much more below the surface than an incredibly adept killer. I also really enjoy the character of Nehemia, a princess of Eyllwe also staying at the castle that is pure spunk.

The world is so easy to understand and even though I thought I'd have trouble pronouncing some of the names and places, they start rolling off the tongue. The plot kept me on the edge of my seat as I waited to find out the outcome. I really liked the different thieves, assassins, and criminals that Celaena is pinned against in the competition. I also was greatly surprised at all that was beneath the surface, since I was basically just expecting a great book about an assassin in a competition for the King. There is so much more going on to keep the story moving.

The Bad and The Romance

My only complaint about the story is the romance. There are two main men in Throne of Glass, the Prince Dorian and the Captain of the Guard Choal Westfall. I love both characters for different reasons and it's plain to see they care for Celaena. They have both been changed by her presence. My problem here is that the romance took away from what I loved about Celaena. It doesn't feel like a love triangle to me so it wasn't that. I can't honestly see her with either men so it's not a book based in romance to me. I guess I really wanted her to realize that she couldn't have a relationship pan out with either guy so she could get her mind back on more important things like winning the competition and staying alive.


This is an amazing start to a series. The end leaves me begging for more and excited about where the story can go from here. There are so many mysteries that kept me guessing the entire time, political intrigue, and fantastic characters. I'm hooked!


"I can survive well enough on my own - if given proper reading material."

"You bear many names, and so I shall name you as well." Her hand rose to Celaena's forehead and she drew an invisible mark. "I name you Elentiya." She kissed the assassin's brow. "I give you this name to use with honor, to use when other names grow too heavy. I name you Elentiya, 'Spirit That Could Not Be Broken.'"

Her legs gave out and Celaena collapsed. Her eyelids became heavy, so she closed them. Why did her heart beat so slowly?

The ridderak stalked back and forth on its four long, spidery limbs, sniffing at her, and Celaena paused. Why didn't it attack immediately? It sniffed at her again, and swiped at the ground with a clawed hand - striking deep enough to take out a chunk of stone.

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