I recently purchased paperback and audio book copies of all the Throne of Glass books. I previously read the series on Kindle, and I wanted a refresh before reading Empire of Storms… I finished the audio book this week and went to repost my reviews with a “year later” position and realised I never posted the reviews!
Throne of Glass was one of my favourite novels – nay, series! – of last year, I don’t know why I didn’t blog about them. So… this review is a bit late, but here goes!
From the blurb:
After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.
Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her … but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.
Then one of the other contestants turns up dead … quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.
Celaena Sardothien is a bad ass! I honestly don’t think there has been a heroine this fierce, who existed in literature, before this series. Celaena is a fighter, an assassin, skilled with many different weapons; she’s smart, she speaks more than one language, and she doesn’t take crap from anyone. And she loves to read, did I mention that? My favourite quote from the book is:
“I can survive well enough on my own— if given the proper reading material.”
Celaena was an infamous assassin who was captured because someone betrayed her. For her crimes Celaena was sentenced to life at Endovier, where she was to mine salt and submit to beatings for the remainder of her life. A life sentence at Endovier usually takes three months.
Celaena has been at the prison for almost a year when Prince Dorian of Ardarlan comes to her with an interesting offer; if she becomes his champion in a contest at Court, wins, and acts as his father’s assassin for 4 years she will be free.
Under the assumed name Lady Lillian Gordaina, Celaena lives in the palace, training to compete against other assassins, thieves and mercenaries to win the title of King’s Champion.
But first, Celaena must survive the competition, and the political manoeuvrings of Rifthold. The palace is full of ruthless courtiers who think that Celaena is trying to win the Prince’s hand in marriage. Kaltain Rompier will do anything to stop that from happening. Someone, or something, is killing the other competitors in a gruesome and gory ritualistic manner, leaving mutilated bodies behind. Chaol doesn’t trust Celaena, and escaping his guard to find information is proving difficult. Will Celaena find the killer and stop them, before they get to her?
This is one of the best fantasy series I’ve read in at least the last 10 years. Even if you hate YA books you should give this book a try.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.
Click here for my review of Crown of Midnight, book 2 in the Throne of Glass series.