Review: Throne of Glass

◆ Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
◆ Read May 2015
◆ English Edition
◆ Purchase: The Book Depository
◆ 
❝ In a land without magic, where the king rules with an iron hand, an assassin is summoned to the castle. She comes not to kill the king, but to win her freedom. If she defeats twenty-three killers, thieves, and warriors in a competition, she is released from prison to serve as the king's champion. Her name is Celaena Sardothien. 

The Crown Prince will provoke her. The Captain of the Guard will protect her. But something evil dwells in the castle of glass--and it's there to kill. When her competitors start dying one by one, Celaena's fight for freedom becomes a fight for survival, and a desperate quest to root out the evil before it destroys her world.
This book has been recommended to me so many times that I was sure it would disappoint, would not live up to its hype. It was wonderful though, to the point where I was tempted to stay up the entire night to finish it.

Throne of Glass features an intricate,  multidimensional world that contains all of my favorite things: kingdoms, castles, magic, heroes and heroines. What's not to love? The world building throughout the book was simply brilliant because every aspect of the world got explained to an extent. Slowly but surely, I got to found about the history of the country, the aspects of court life, the lives of the common folks, the slavery, without it ever feeling like big heaps of info-dumping. Everything felt significant, every aspect felt connected in a way.

The best thing about this book is Celaena without a doubt. She is the most diverse heroine I've come across so far in the sense that she is an independent, ruthless woman who kills others for a living, yet likes pretty dresses and balls, dresses and pianofortes. A heroine whose period gets discussed in the book, to add to that! When has that ever happened in literature? Celaena is the perfect example of how women can kick-ass, but still be feminine. I enjoyed her point of view the most because she is so funny and sassy.

The one downside to Celaena's characterization is that Maas made her too perfect, too desirable. Celaena is skilled at everything and is so immensely beautiful on the outside and inside apparently that both male protagonists fall head over heels for her.

That's right, Throne of Glass unfortunately contains a love triangle. It's one of the few aspects that I disliked about the book and that I wished the author would have left out. It's a really predictable trope in Young Adult books and never has any significance for the story in my opinion. I was much more interested in Dorian and Chaol's friendship, wanted to see them interact more without Celaena present. Instead it resorted to a game of rivalry that I could not care less for. They were both still really interesting characters, but would have been even more so had there not been such a heavy focus on their shared love interest.

Moreover, for all its excitement, the story was rather repetitive. Most days consisted of picking out clothes, training, reading books, dining, sleeping, with the occasional test thrown in to determine the skills of potential champions. Only with an incident in the crypt and the final duel did the plot truly feature some exciting action. 

Nonetheless, Throne of Glass is a thrilling read with to-die-for world building and the greatest heroine you could ever wish for. If that doesn't convince you, I can assure you the other characters are just as interesting. I for one can't wait to read the rest of the series! 

4 stars because:

✓ Worldbuilding
✓ Diverse characters
✓Amazing heroine
✗Love triangle
✗ Repetitive at times
 

Brilliant Bookshelf

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