Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas


Throne of Glass
Sarah J. Maas
Bloomsbury USA Children's
[August 7, 2012]

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 exhilarating. 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.

I wasn't sure what to expect going in. I loved the concept and some people I really trust loved it. But some people I really trust also hated it.

Celaena....oh this girl. She had a lot going for her and she was an interesting read but...she was basically perfect. Beautiful, talented, clever, witty, had all the guys falling for her. Her only real "flaw" was her arrogance. It wasn't something I really minded while reading, but when I was done, I noticed it. And I know it was the big problem for a lot of people I know that didn't like this book. But she was complex and interesting and not what you'd expect an assassin to be. I thought she was pretty badass and strong.

The story itself was really intriguing. I mean, a bunch of criminals fighting to become the ultimate assassin? Then they start getting killed off? It was an awesome story filled with insane twists and things they don't explain in the summary. There was so much action and drama, but it never felt like too much or too made up for the sake of drama. I honestly loved this story.

Now....I think Lanna described the romance portion best in her review (basically, I agree with the whole thing, honestly). This is another one of those rare cases of love triangles done right. Dorian and Celaena were so adorable and cute together and slhgaedgjlnsgs. But...Chaol and Celaena were so adorable and cute together and sflgsnjfhgfsn. I just...I don't know guys. They were so perfect and lovely and I would like the three of them to make something work.

There were a lot of characters in this book and not all of them got a ton of page-time, but most of them were super well developed. I really felt like I knew most of these characters, I understood them as well as Celaena did.  There's this one character that we only actually meet like three times, but Sarah manages to convey him so well in those brief meetings.

Which brings me to the writing. Sarah's totally earned her Author Badge. She earned all of the fame she had from FictionPress and she definitely made a good decision in deciding to publish it. The writing is brilliant and engaging and rich. Celaena's voice was never too heavy or too light, it was distinctive. Sarah tells an incredibly brilliant, complicated story as well as some of the veteran writers.

I just...I loved this book, guys. No it wasn't perfect, but I loved it anyway. And I'm so glad I still have all but one of the prologue stories to read because I don't want to just be done with this world and I definitely don't want to wait another year to read book 2.

If you love fantasy, subtle-but-awesome romances, and really well built characters, you should be heading to your nearest bookstore now. Or clicking a "Buy Now" button if you don't want to/can't get to a bookstore.

--Julie

3 comments:

  1. I felt the same way about it. Personally, I thought her "perfectness" was just a show and on the surface...it was after things started going wrong and her past came back that I realized she wasn't as perfect. I LOVED Chaol more than Dorian but it was a great love triangle!

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  2. Her being perfect didn't bother me - maybe because I didn't view her as perfect. You pointed out her arrogance already, but she was kind of childish/bratty at times too (like with Chaol not inviting her to balls and things)... plus, the whole killing people thing, I do consider that a flaw - I mean, sure, she's a total bad ass but she's also a murderer and is kind of proud of that, which is a pretty messed up character trait.

    I don't think everyone loved her either, I think she was just kind of a novelty to Dorian and that's why he fell for her and Chaol... it took him a while to warm up to her. People lusted for her, but it wasn't all love and she seemed to have more enemies and people hating her than friends.

    I saw a review of the book where it was saying she shouldn't have been treated so well at the palace - but I totally disagree with that. If she's really this feared, epic assasin and they want her to work for them then treating her well is the best way to make that happen. It's giving her a reason to stay.

    ...Sorry, totally rambling and it ended up being more a response to negative things I've seen said about the book than a reply to your review. =P

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  3. I have a feeling the perfectness of the main character is going to overwhelm my love of the writing. :/ I shall try it anyway!

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