The Throne of Glass series has been recommended to me countless times by many of my followers on my tumblr blog. Photos, references, fan art etc. fills up my newsfeed constantly so I decided that I needed to check out this series for myself. If I liked it, that meant I had a quite a few books to continue reading as it is currently a series of four books. After a solid 4 and a half hour plane ride reading it, I’m now attempting to write all my thoughts up on a 3 hour coach journey, so excuse me if my writing is not up to scratch as I’m exhausted. I have read Sarah J. Maas’ work previously with her A Court of Thorns and Roses novel, which I considered to be very well written with sustainable characters but, after I read Throne of Glass, I can’t help but feel that this book was better.
There was a sense of passion in Maas writing. Her characters were vivid and consistent. She allowed them to be complex and develop throughout the book as the plot unfolds. The chapters were especially something I enjoyed as they were quite short and concise and though that meant there were more of them, it also meant there wasn’t any fillers of extra, unnecessary details. The world which she has created is also fascinating, especially viewing it from Celaena’s point of view. She was such a different narrator to read from in the respect that she is a female character that doesn’t need saving. I’m not going to state that this is a revolutionary book and that she is the first strong female character that fends for herself no matter which male figure is presented in front of her because…she isn’t, there are many other books that do have similar characters. But, I will say this is one of the few successful times that I’ve read it.
In summary ,this book is about an eighteen-year-old girl called Celaena who has been imprisoned in a prisoner’s work camp for over a year, due to the crimes she has committed previously as an assassin. She is then brought forth to Dorian the Prince of the Crown of Ardalan, who makes a deal with her for her freedom. His father, the King, is in need of an assassin and has decided to conduct a competition in which his close associates each chose a champion to compete for the title of ‘the King’s Champion’. If she succeeds and wins, then after four years of service she will be given her freedom to do with as she pleases. Accepting this deal, Celaena then embarks on an adventure where she visits the Glass Kingdom and faces both the competition as well as the evil that is lurking the shadows, unseen by most people.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, especially as a YA novel. Though there were predictable moments and cliché lines, the novel seemed very self-aware of what it was doing and how it was presenting itself. I didn’t find any moments to be boring or not needed to propel the storyline, nor did I find any moments of inconstancy. I think my only issue with the story was the character of Dorian. He is the basic outline of a YA novel love interest in the sense that he plays a character that is good-looking, charming, known womaniser that is compelled by our protagonist and yet also is quite sensitive and battling with family issues and the struggle of his position/ranking. This, as always, is mostly who the protagonist ends up with. I, for one, never root for this guy. I always root for the friend on the side (a.k.a Chaol). This is the person who establishes a friendship, protects her, puts her before himself and most importantly does not need anything from her except her presence. I’m aware of the Dorian/Celaena ship that is plastered all over the web and I have not read any of the further books so I cannot make a full judgement based on a couple hundred of pages but I can say at the moment I’m not rooting for them. Their main drive is passion, not companionship. They are essentially what the other cannot have, which is also another enticing part of it. It reminds me so much of Edward and Bella and Jem and Tessa, especially when we’re allowed to read from his point of view compared to Chaol. Darion always talks about himself and then his ‘want’ of her whereas Chaol always talks about her, and how much he is growing to trust her.
I am interested to read more books in the series and have the secrets that were revealed in this first book unfold more into the later ones. I am also interested to see how the level of writing is sustained throughout the series as more often then not, as can be seen in most of my reviews of series, they tend to drop and begin to lack in context and development and seem more like a quick way to make profit.
(I also accidentally added the rest of the books into my Amazon basket and ordered them the other day so I now have the whole series *oops*.)
Language/Style: 8 points
Characters: 9 points
Plot: 8 points
Story: 8 points
Giving this book a total of 33 points out of 40.
Favourite Part: “With each day he felt the barriers melting. He let them melt. Because of her genuine laugh, because he caught her one afternoon sleeping with her face in the middle of a book, because he knew that she would win.”