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

Release Date: August 7th 2012
Published By: Bloomsbury
Pages: 420
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list

Rating: 4 out of 5

Synopsis:In the dark, filthy salt mines of Endovier, an eighteen-year-old girl is serving a life sentence. She is a trained assassin, the best of her kind, but she made a fatal mistake: she got caught.

Young Captain Westfall offers her a deal: her freedom in return for one huge sacrifice. Celaena must represent the prince in a to-the-death tournament—fighting the most gifted thieves and assassins in the land. Live or die, Celaena will be free. Win or lose, she is about to discover her true destiny. But will her assassin’s heart be melted?

Review: Throne of Glass is The Hunger Games meets Game of Thrones. The general concept; an assassin who must now fight for the very King who she hates to obtain the one thing that she desperately wants. The story in this wonderful YA fantasy is only just beginning, but this debut novel has set up an extraordinary, complicated world that I cannot wait to explore further.  Celaena Sardothien is serving a sentence in Endovier (aka death camp), until Prince Dorian Havillard offers her something she never believed possible – her freedom. To gain her freedom, all she has to do is be his champion in a deadly competition to become the new royal assassin – and then loyally serve the same king who destroyed her life. 

Upon arriving in Rifthold, Celaena is trained by the Captain of the Guards, Chaol Westfall and she must undergo many tests to make it the final duel which would eventually lead to her freedom. However, as the tests draw near, contestants turn up dead. Is this a coincidence, or are there larger forces at work? Will Celaena make it to the final duel, or will she be the next target? I originally felt that Celaena was conceited, as she constantly refers to herself as the best assassin, but I think this was due to a lack of background information about her past. Throughout the book we only got glimpses of the tortures of her life; the road that led her to become a notorious assassin, her time in Endovier and how she has nothing left besides her will to survive. However as the story develops, you see that Celaena is an incredibly strong character; not only is she a kick-ass assassin, but she is smart and sassy, but she will not allow nothing (or nobody) to break her spirit.  There is the beginning of a love triangle in this book, but it did not fully form (well, it hasn’t yet). I don’t normally like (possible) triangles, but I do like both males in this one. I was disappointed when the storyline finally took Celaena to one of the boys – but I am not giving up hope for the other character just yet :)
 
First, there is Prince Dorian. Being the son of the king that destroyed her life, Celaena initially hates him and what he stands for. But as you get to know Dorian you find that there is more to him than it first appears, he is witty, flirtatious, smart and he wants to be a better person than his father. Although Dorian is a good character, I found the relationship between him and Celaena progressed a little too quick for me – there was just not enough substance between Celaena initially hating him and then actually liking him – but the potential for these two is certainly there.

However, the relationship between Calaena and Chaol was much more developed and seemed far more realistic. Chaol is more reserved than Dorian, but he is also funny, sweet, loyal and supportive. It was a slow start for these two, but over time they began to trust each other, like each other and even had a little bit of fun together, and as the relationship develops, you can see the possibilities of this relationship going further. The secondary characters in this book are amazing. It was surprising how well developed these characters seemed to be, even when you do not know much about them. So many characters have personal agendas – both good and evil – some are known, some are not. And even though you may not know what character is fighting for or for what reason, this storyline certainly has a lot of underlying politics, plots for power, scheming, manipulation, deceit, loyalty, faith and hope. There are some very strong but underestimated secondary characters littered throughout this book, and I cannot wait to see where the storyline will take them. I really enjoyed learning about the characters through alternating POVs via third person narrative. I think this format allowed you to unravel the complexity of world and learn more about the characters, the kingdom, the magic, the war and the treachery. The “bad guy” aspect of this book was predictable, however, there are much bigger players in this game than the “bad guy” – there are true villains lurking in the background. 

Throne of Glass has set a solid foundation for what will hopefully be a great series. Intrigue, conspiracy, danger, assassins, heroines and magic – what more could I ask for? Oh yes, an awesome cover,… oh look, Bloomsbury made sure I got that as well! :)

Quotes:

“Libraries were full of ideas–perhaps the most dangerous and powerful of all weapons.”

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

“My name is Celaena Sardothien. 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.”

“Sometimes, the wicked will tell us things just to confuse us–to haunt our thoughts long after we’ve faced them.”

“No. I can survive well enough on my own – if given the proper reading material.”

Book Trailer:

What do you think?

  • Geraldine says:

    If you read ‘Crown of Midnight’, could you please review it? This is one of my favourite series’s, and it would be so interesting to have your outlook on it!
    :)

    • Kristy says:

      Hi Geraldine
      I was planning to read that last weekend, however I sadly could not get to it. I have read the novella’s, and that review will be up soon, and I am starting Crown of Midnight very very soon :) Keep an eye on my Twitter or Goodreads for updates on my progress :)

  • I asked one time on Twitter whether to read this book or not…I think I really want to know! I’ve heard people say she didn’t even assassinate anyone..I heard she was cocky, but then I heard she was really kickass and that this book is awesome. The quotes are just amazing which is why I’m changing my mind right now. I love the library quote and her introduction; so cocky! LOL. Fantastic review <3

    -leigh

    • Kristy says:

      Hi Leigh
      I would have to agree with what you have heard, in Throne of Glass there was not much “action” and she was cocky – but she was still kickass. You get to see more assassination like action in the novella’s that I recommend you read between Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight (which has much more action in it as well). I am really enjoying this series :)

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