In a land without magic, where the king rules with an iron hand, an assassin is summoned to the castle. She comes not to kill the king, but to win her freedom. If she defeats twenty-three killers, thieves, and warriors in a competition, she is released from prison to serve as the king’s champion. Her name is Celaena Sardothien.
The Crown Prince will provoke her. The Captain of the Guard will protect her. But something evil dwells in the castle of glass–and it’s there to kill. When her competitors start dying one by one, Celaena’s fight for freedom becomes a fight for survival, and a desperate quest to root out the evil before it destroys her world.
What worked for me?
I love how bad-ass Celaena Sardothien is. At such a young age, she’s already become infamous as Adarlan’s Assassin. She has lead a tough life since she was young and she grew under the wings of the King of the Assassins who trained her as a protege. But I find her bad-assery admirable not because she can kill people but because she can fight her own battles. She knows how to protect and defend herself and she, no matter how the King of Adarlan thinks he can, cannot be tamed or leashed.
As the competition heated up, I was looking forward to the matches between the champions and my favorites were always the ones where she outwits them. I also enjoy the quiet moments she has with Dorian and Chaol.
There are a lot of mysteries surrounding the whole overarching plot of the series and Sarah J Maas ably hooks readers to the promise of more when the revelations do come.
What did not work for me?
Okay, let me begin by saying that a lot of people have been raving about this book and the whole series and I completely had an open mind when I started reading this book and was so ready to fall in love with it. Unfortunately… I didn’t. At all. It was a pretty well-written story with just enough mysteries to be solved within the first book and yet a lot more others ripe for expansion in the following books.
But I didn’t connect with the characters at all. Sure, Celaena was a very intriguing character but I didn’t become as invested in her as a character or in her story as much as I would have like to have become. Or any of the other characters for that matter. I can say my most favorite character is Prince Dorian minus the love triangle. I feel like he has a lot of inner conflict that would be great material for plot development.
My over-all take on it?
Gosh, I was so sad that I didn’t love this series. I was so poised to love this one but then it all fell flat to me. I did buy the second book, Crown of Midnight, but I’m not sure when I will be able to take that one off the shelf to read. In any case, many people loved this one as well as the rest of the series so if you’re looking for a bad-ass heroine to read, you might still want to give this a try.
My rating: (3.75 stars)
About the Author:
I’m Sarah J. Maas, the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Throne of Glass series (Heir of Fire, Book 3, will be out in September 2014). The Assassin’s Blade, a bind-up of all five TOG novellas is out now! Starting in Spring 2015 – my New Adult Fantasy series, A Court of Thorns and Roses, will be published by Bloomsbury as well! Hooray! I was born/raised in Manhattan, but traded freezing winters and sweltering summers for No Winter Ever Weather when I followed my then-boyfriend (now husband!) out to California in 2008. After six years in SoCal, I’ve finally returned to the East Coast, and am currently residing in the Philadelphia area. I graduated Magna Cum Laude from Hamilton College with a degree in Creative Writing, and a minor in Religious Studies. I’m represented by Tamar Rydzinski of the Laura Dail Literary Agency.
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