Series: Throne of Glass #1
Published by Bloomsbury Genres: Fantasy, YA Fantasy
When magic has gone from the world, and a vicious king rules from his throne of glass, an assassin comes to the castle. She does not come to kill, but to win her freedom. If she can defeat twenty-three killers, thieves, and warriors in a competition to find the greatest assassin in the land, she will become the King’s Champion and be released from prison.
Her name is Celaena Sardothien.
The Crown Prince will provoke her. The Captain of the Guard will protect her.
And a princess from a foreign land will become the one thing Celaena never thought she’d have again: a friend.
But something evil dwells in the castle–and it’s there to kill. When her competitors start dying, horribly, one by one, Celaena’s fight for freedom becomes a fight for survival–and a desperate quest to root out the source of evil before it destroys her world.
That moment when you finish a book you’ve really enjoyed and you realise that whatever book comes next is going to have a lot to live up to. You know what I mean? I often feel like nothing will match the book I’ve just read, so picking that next book is a challenge.
After careful consideration I selected Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas. I’d seen a lot of talk about it online and wanted to know what the fuss was about. Plus it was only 99p on the Kindle so it was too good a chance to pass by!
Calaena Sardothien is a prisoner. She is serving a life sentence in the dark salt mines of Endovier. She might be only 18 but she is a top assassin….a top assassin that got caught.
She has spent a year in the mines, the fact that she is still alive is tantamount to her character. Then one day she is offered a deal, a deal that could, some day, see her regain her freedom… or could send her back to the mines. The Crown Prince, Dorian, and his friend, the Captain of the King’s Guard, Chaol arrive at Endovier to find Calaena. Prince Dorian wants her to represent him in a competition, she will take on other criminals, assassins and soldiers in a bid to win the title of the King’s Champion. Despite her hatred of the King, Calaena realises this is her only chance of freedom and so the competition begins.
Calaena is a tough character. She is the best assassin in the game and takes no nonsense! She is to be trained by Chaol. A year in the mines has left her out of condition so she is taken to the palace and put through her paces.
Things get rather interesting when Prince Dorian shows a keen interest in the assassin. Visiting her rooms and stealing time with her it’s clear he is fascinated by this beautiful girl. Yet her attention is divided between the handsome Prince and the Captain of the Guard Chaol. With her icy exterior melting who, if anyone, will win her affection?
The competition was always going to be tough, it put them through months of training and combat. However when evil inhabits the castle things begin to take a turn for the worse. Competitors are found dead, savagely killed. They are being picked off one by one…can Calaena find the source and survive to reach that final dual?
I loved this book. It’s a Young Adult fantasy and therefore easy to read, but no less absorbing. Calaena is a likeable character, a strong woman in a world of men. Her character resonates with me as I’ve been that female in a man’s world….mind you it wasn’t exactly life or death for me!
I really liked the way this book is written. There is a clear timeline – the duration of the competition. I enjoyed the darkness of the evil in the castle and the light of the relationships with Dorian and Chaol. I won’t tell you which one I was rooting for…you have to make up your own mind about that.
This is the first book in a series. The next book, Crown of Midnight, is out in the UK on 15th August 2013. I can’t wait to find out what Calaena does next, where her journey takes her and who from the first book is still in her life. This series really could go anywhere and I look forward to joining the journey along the way.