Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (#1)
Release Date: August 2nd, 2012
Date Read: 2012, July 11th-13th
Received: ARC via NetGalley (OWN)
Rating: 4/5 stars
Recommended to: 14+
SUMMARY -Celaena Sardothien, feared assassin, trained to kill without hesitation. Ruthless, sarcastic, strong. By the prince's command, she has been captured by the captain of the Guard. She has been offered freedom - if she wins a competition and works for the king for four years. But what cost will Celaena pay? The lives of every contestant is on the line, especially when the ruthless, disturbing killings begin. And hard-hearted Celaena may have a reason to love again. But nothing - nothing - must stand between her and freedom.
MY THOUGHTS -I really, really enjoyed this book! The feel to it is awesome - I mean, female assassins are WAY cool. The writing sometimes fell short, but then made up for it with some awesome fight scenes and descriptions.
I'll admit, for the first half of the book, there were some prominent things that really stood out to me, as annoying. More on that later - but I was considering 3 stars. Good thing it really really made up for it! Besides, months after I've read it, I hardly remember those things and had to look at my notes. They're not super important, but they are there.
One thing I didn't love was the shifting POVs. So random, and often unneeded, I felt. They would have seemed more vital if they had shown, rather than told. They got better as the story progressed, but at first they irked me.
CHARACTER NOTES -Celaena was....unstable. Let's put it that way. She was insane one moment, angelic the next. A bit inconsistent, I felt, but only in the beginning. Then, mid-book, she seemed more....crazy, like her year in the mines had sent her over the edge. Then, after being around people and building friendships, her mind seemed to heal. So while I had some issues with her, I still loved her character all around and felt that most of her actions were totally normal for a trained assassin trying to gain her freedom. And her flaws made her all the more real to me! She proved to be a very worthy MC in the end.
Crown Prince Dorian, one of the love interests, was...well, he grew on me. I don't think he's the one for Celaena, not at all, and I felt sorry for the poor love-struck chap, but...no. He kind of annoyed me at first, like he was too cheesy. But then he got better. Definitely friend material, but not strong enough or dedicated enough for me to adore him like I adore....
Chaol. This guy is so wonderful I want to write an epic poem proclaiming my love for him - or something along those ridiculous but totally realistic lines... ;) He's such a man - and that's just it! He's responsible, strong, hard-working, terribly gorgeous, and just fantastically incredible on every level. He is strong and steadfast, where Celaena is wild and unpredictable. That is what makes him perfect for her, among other things. The way he pushed, encouraged, stayed strong, was a rock for Celaena in a world where her next move could be her last.... I love him. I love him. I love him. I love him. I love him. Etc, etc, etc.
I really loved Nehemia. She's strange, forceful, like Celaena. Their friendship was really a great dynamic for the story.
THE BAD GUYS. WERE. NASTY! They scared me...seriously they were so radically EVIL. I don't want to say names 'cause I feel like that would be a bit spoilery. But for reals - assassins are crazy! Twenty-three criminals competing for a title? Crazy!
STORY NOTES -Reading the story about an assassin is new to me, but...I want more! Now! Like, when's the next book coming out?! (And can the cover please feature Chaol, PLEASE?! *Sigh*)
So, the story starts - and never slows. Not once. Fast fast fast! I loved that about it. Always something happening, a new twist, a new development!
And welcome to the land of NO INSTA-LOVE! Congratulations, Sarah! You win the award of perfectly drawn out love story development, and two different kinds! For Dorian, it started out as very physical, because he's been a bit of a womanizer (to say the least), and while I believe he loves her, in his own way, I think someone else's love (coughcough!) is deeper, greater...
Chaol's love develops not through physical attraction, but through time spent together, a connection through working hard together, through laughing together. It was beautiful to see his progression of feelings from hatred to....WOW. Very powerful emotions. :D
I'm also so happy that Celaena didn't kiss both boys and act all confused about her feelings. She was very level-headed in her feelings toward the boys. But now...now...I'm highly anticipating Celaena and Chaol's first kiss! Like - hurry up already, Sarah! ;)
The book ended with a bang. Stunning! The last part of the climax - "Get up!" sent my heart pounding away. My knuckles turned while. My breathing paused. Wow.
SUMMING IT UP -Starts good and ends really really great! Sarah, please hurry up! Your fans are dying in anticipation! I bought Throne of Glass and had it signed by the lovely author and now I hope to do the same for Book 2! :D
For the Parents -
Some minor cussing; a few kisses with little detail. Very violent - sometimes gory. Reference to faces being ripped off, brains getting cut up, etc. Recommended 14+.