Thursday, 26 July 2012

Review of THRONE OF GLASS by Sarah J Maas

Author: Sarah J Maas
Source: eARC from Bloomsbury via Net Galley
Publication Date: August 7th 2012

* I hereby award this book 5 wings*


I first heard about this book through the buzz in the blogging community. I looked it up and knew I had to read it. I absolutely adore the cover for this. Both the US and the UK. They both say that the protagonist is going to be a kick-ass and that is definitely the truest thing that can be said.

I have read some awesome books recently and each have deserved there own high ratings. But THRONE OF GLASS is one of those that I wish I could rate through the roof. It deserves every one of it's 5 wings and then some. It has to be the most spectacular book that I have read so far in 2012. 

Celeana Sardothien, an 18 year-old assassin has just spent a year in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes. Prince Dorian offers her freedom from the prison camp, on the one condition that she be his Champion in his father's competition to find a new Royal Assassin. Of course she is free to decline the offer, but she will find herself back in Endovier.

In this competition, she will find herself pitted against thieves, warriors and other assassins from across the Empire. Each of whom are sponsored by a member of the Royal Council. 
If Celeana wins, she will serve as the King's personal assassin for a period of 4 years before being granted her freedom. The problem is, those that she is up against are some tough competition.

Celeana must train each day with the Captain of the Guard, Chaol Westfall. These sessions are to prepare her physically as well as mentally for the trials ahead. Though she finds them to be physically tough at first, they do serve as a lesson that she must learn, she needs to be able to overcome the brutality of the work involved in the sessions with Chaol in order to be able to overcome her opponents. 

Celeana finds herself bored by the stiff upper crust that is the politics of court life. However, she comes out of her shell more with each passing day when she realises that Prince Dorian is showing an interest in her. He's handsome, sauve, kind, funny... most of all, he is enraptured by this assassin that has found herself catapulted into his life.  Celeana finds herself taken with his attention and it makes court life, training, the competition, that little bit easier to take. The Prince believes in Celeana. Not only as his Champion, but more so when he gets to know the real girl underneath her 'tough as nails' exterior. 

However, flattered though she is by Prince Dorian's affections, it's the Captain of the Guard, Chaol, that seems to know her better. He seems to understand her in a way neither of them are familiar with. There are some tender moments between the two. It's there in the way he looks at her, the way she takes his hand and looks upon him. There's a connection that could be forged, if only the two of them weren't too stubborn to act upon it. 

So it is with Prince Dorian that Celeana comes to have stolen moments of passion. 

I was so frustrated by this, the fact that I could not fathom why Celeana and Chaol couldn't just bite the bullet so to speak and just admit that there was a possibility there.
I am not one for liking love triangles in books. I am known to be an advocate of the underdog or the bad-boy. But in THRONE OF GLASS, I can't help feeling torn between both men. There are good qualities to be found within them both, though the more realistic voice in me says that a long-term relationship could not be had with the Prince. There is just too much standing in their way. Like the fact that Lady Kaltain doesn't like the connection that the two seem to have forged. Lady Kaltain sees the Prince as her own target and she won't stop at anything to break them apart. There's also the fact that she could die within the competition, or the very real prospect of having the King make his feelings known and use his position to tear them apart.

But I found that in spite of these things being true, I couldn't help but fall a little in love with Prince Dorian. There's something so tender and sweet within this man that any woman would be a fool not to fall for him.

I absolutely fell in love with Celeana. She won me over instantaneously. I said I have a thing for the underdog, well that's true of the protagonists, not just the love interests. 
Because Celeana could not tell anyone who she really was, the fact that she had to go by the name of Lillian Gordaina, well it felt as though she really was the underdog - she had to constantly underplay herself and hold back in how much she put into each round - I just couldn't help but back her all the way and hope that she slaughtered the rest of the competition. Though not in the literal sense, as that seemed to be the job of some unseen killer, lurking, waiting to strike the competitors. There was someone or something slowly getting rid of them one by one and it wasn't stopping until it had taken them all down. 

Celeana found herself not only caught up in the competition but also in trying to solve the mystery surrounding the gruesome deaths of her competitors. 

The writing of Sarah J Maas instantly sucks you in and keeps you turning the pages, dying to know what happens next. I felt as though I had been transported to another time and place, sitting on the sidelines cheering Celeana on. I love feisty women who can handle themselves and the competition and she sure wasn't lacking. 
I found myself investing in this story. I sat up until too late at night reading when I really should have been in bed. Then today I sat here for four hours, no breaks taken, trying to finish it off. There were times I should have put the book down but found that I couldn't because I just had to know what was around the next corner.
This book was so much fun, I am so glad that I read it. I am dying to know if there are to be more books, it is definitely something I will need to investigate. 

If you don't go straight and pick this up as soon as it comes out, you are going to miss out, let me tell you.
If you like action packed, drama filled, intense journeys, this this is one I implore you to take. You won't be sorry you did. Trust me. 

Thank you, as always, to Net Galley for providing the eARC and thank you to Bloomsbury for approving me for the Galley.
Thank you Sarah J Maas for creating a world that sucks you in, chews you up and doesn't spit you back out any time soon. I would love for there to be at least one more book. I feel Prince Dorian and Chaol deserve one, not just Celeana. 

Thank you all who came by to read my review. I hope you found yourself adding this book to your already huge TBR piles.

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