August 21, 2012

Review ~ Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Genre: YA High Fantasy
Length: 426 pages (e-book)
Released: August 2012
Publisher:  Bloomsbury
Meet Celaena Sardothien.
Beautiful. Deadly. Destined for greatness.

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.

My Thoughts:

For those who did not know, I avoid YA books. I can count on one hand how many YA books I liked. However, the trailer (see below) and the blurb made me so interested in the story, that not even that YA label could keep me away from it. Reading this interview with Sarah has only assured me further that the book will be good. And fortunately, it lived up to my expectations. Since I'm from Hungary, I'm more than happy, that one of our Publishers bought the rights, so soon I can see this awesome book on the shelves here too (hopefully with the UK cover ^^). YAY!! 

I wouldn't say this book is action packed, because the first half is mostly backstory, information, introduction to this world and unfortunetely even later only some (3 or 4) of the tests we get to actually "see". We only get a brief report on the other tests. It made me a bit sad, because I wanted to read more about those tests. I had to take a few breaks (5 min. long) while reading because of that (okay, maybe the 3 hours sleep I got didn't really help either). But you have to know that I terribly hate to read the descriptions, flashbacks, etc. ... unless they are properly written. And this was well written, so I still liked them.

I especially love that there were a few chapters from Chaol's and Dorian's POV. I always love those.

Actually I did not know at the beginning why is this in the Fantasy category, but in time the magic came in (which the dictator king had destroyed and exiled) which the author led up very well and wisely, because I had no clue where we were heading with that. If I remember right, magic will have even bigger role in the upcoming books (fairies, dragons - everything your little heart desires).

For those, who have read the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead, Celaena is reminded me of Rose. You cannot help but like her. From the beginning 'til the end, her character is shining! Really strong, smart female lead, of which - we have to admit - there are only a few on the YA market. Although there were some slips in the beginning that made me almost pull my hair out such as when Celaena was dragged before the prince from the mines and she's whining about how dirty she is "standing before Dorian Havilliard as little more than a gutter rat" Seriously?? She'd been trained to be an assassin (messy job!!) since the age of eight, and now she's stressing out on how DIRTY and shameful she is before a prince whose family she has no respect toward... But thank God it did not last long, so i can forgive Sarah for this. Consider it didn't even happen.
"She was a honed blade made by the King of Assassins for his own profit. She was a sleeping animal – a mountain cat or a dragon – and her markings of power were everywhere."

Dorian the Crown Prince of Adarlan... at first glance one would think that he is the usual womanizer, spoiled little prince. But NO! His character was sooo positive that even I was falling for him. Yes, he had the basic arrogance of a Prince, the royal behavior, but both of his personality and views were immensely engaging. Unlike everyone else, he does not cast stones at Celaena for what she was.
“I don’t quite comprehend why you’d force someone to bow when the purpose of the gesture is to display allegiance and respect.” 

Chaol Westfall is the Captain of the Royal Guard and Celaena's personal trainer and guard. He doesn't trust in Celaena at all. He's not even trying to be nice to her and acting like a real guard. Cold, quiet and he keeps his distance from her. At least most of the time. In the end, however, we can see that he began to like the assassin, and cares about her, maybe even has feelings for the girl. Somtimes his cold behavior was funny, but his character didn't really have any effects on me. Especially at the end of the book where he killed someone evil, cold hearted animal to protect someone else's life and he's bitching about it and totally falling apart... Seriously?? What kind of captain are you, my friend?? That was the point, when his character lost all the chance he had to impress me...Sorry.

"Something to remember when fighting me, Sardothien,” (...)“Hmm?” she grunted, lunging to deflect his newest attack.“I don’t lose.”
I knew I will be screwed with a love triangle once again, but I did not expected this...*SPOILER* It wasn't really a love triangle, because Chaol and Celaena were only barely friend at the end, but there was the tension between Celaena and Dorian through the whole book and they even kinda dated so I was like finally the boy I prefer gets the girl... this is a first!! Man, I was sooo wrong... really, that was cruel! I hate Sarah now... they were sooo perfect together!! I understand and respect Celaena's desire for freedom, and that once she's done with the 4 years of serving, she'll go away but grrrr... She wanted Dorian all along and then BAMM, she’d like to remain his friend... Poor guy!! *END OF SPOILER*

Favourite character(s): Celaena & Dorian 
Favourite scene(s): When Celaena saved Nox.
Favorite quote(s): I have sooo many, but I don't want to spoil anything so I'll go with these...

“I hate women like that. They’re so desperate for the attention of men that they’d willingly betray and harm members of their own sex. And we claim men cannot think with their brains! At least men are direct about it.”

Arobynn told me that second place was just a nice title for the first loser.

„My name is Celaena Sardothien,” she whispered. „But it makes no difference if my name's Celaena or Lillian or Bitch, because I"d still beat you, no matter what you call me.”

„We all bear scars, Dorian. Mine just happen to be more visible than most.”

Anyway... I love the UK cover and thank God it's not the only reason why this book is worth the money. Outstanding start for a good series.

DhesiX Web Developer


  1. Ah! Knowing that you, Andie, royal avoider of all things YA...hahaha, enjoyed this book only enforces that I.Must.Have.It! I was really hoping to be part of the tour, but I'll still put my money down for this little beauty. If only I didn't have to wait another week to get it. ;)

  2. Hehe, yeah, it def. says something ;) I didn't even know about the tour, maybe next time it's a 6 book series after all. Lol. I'm stil waiting for my paperback copy, so...

  3. Oh, yes. It's one I want in print as well. And yes, we'll hope to make the tour next time around. ;)