Friday, 13 July 2012

Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

  Title: Throne of Glass
  Author: Sarah J. Maas
  Publisher: Bloomsbury UK
  Publication date: August 2nd 2012
  My rating: 5 stars


“Courage of the heart is very rare... let it guide you”

It takes a lot for me to rate a book 5 stars these days, when I first started reviewing I remember I used to easily give every single book I loved 5 stars. But now over the last year or so I’ve found a book has to do so much more in order for me to rate it 5 stars. Take this year for example, three of my most memorable reads and which have easily become my all times favourites are Hunting Lila, Divergent and This is not a Test. I devoured these amazing books in just a few days, they are books which had me hooked in the first few pages, books which I couldn’t get enough of, that they had me up in the middle of the night thinking about them and for days afterwards. Throne of Glass made me feel all of the above and so much more that I am confident to say it could be my favourite of the year.

When I first heard about Throne of Glass, I admit I fobbed it off, I didn’t think it was my type of book, but then as these awesome reviews started trickling in, I knew I had to get my hands on a copy, they made me realise how much epicness I was missing out on.

Celaena Sardothien is an assassin at only 18 years old, she is one of the best around, but eventually she was finally captured, after someone ratted her out she was sent to Endovier prison, one of the harshest prisons around. Celaena stuck it out for a year until Captain Chaol Westfall captain of the guard and Dorian Havilliard crown prince of Adarlan turn up out of the blue with an offer she can’t refuse; she’s invited to take part in a competition with 23 other competitors, it will be a fierce competition and the winner will have to work for the king of Adarlan and then will be granted their freedom. Celaena comes up with the compromise that she will work for the king for four years, dealing with anything the king feels suffice. However to get to the final stages of the competition where there will be a dual between the last five remaining competitors Celaena will have to work for it, she will have to complete vigorous training and tests in 13 weeks. There however are major stipulations which must be adhered to as well the tough schedule; if a person ends up last in a test, they will be automatically eliminated and sent back to whichever hell-hole they were originally sprung from. (Celaena’s option back to Endovier). And if anyone tries to escape at any point in the competition then they will be killed. Celaena is given a difficult decision to make, but she knows her answer immediately, she wants her freedom, needs her freedom even if she has to work four years for it.

I loved this entire concept, of Celaena having to battle her way through to become the winner. What made the concept more interesting was that she had to take on a different identity, Chaol and Dorian didn’t want any of the competitors to know how much of a threat she could actually be. This miffed Celaena very much, but she had to agree that they knew what they were talking about, at least this way she would have the upper hand over her competitors. Also the fact that all the other competitors were male made it even more interesting as they would assume that she was weak and pathetic with her fake identity.

Celaena was one hell of a character; she was kick ass, intelligent, beautiful, but in no way cocky about it.  I adored her snarky humour, as she always had an answer for everything. However despite the tough exterior she displayed, she also had a tender more fragile side too. In the back of her mind she was always worried that she would fail at some test and be sent back to Endovier. Celaena was an amazing heroine, however I was hoping to learn more about her before she became this big time assassin, we were given brief snippets into her life before, which seemed quite dark and achy, it certainly had my interest piqued, I’m hoping we will get to know her character and back story a little bit more in any future follow ups.

Dorian and Chaol; I originally started liking Dorian, he was a charmer, had a reputation with the ladies and of course he was the prince. He had a loveable rogueness about him, which I adored. Then there was Chaol captain of the guard, I wouldn’t say there was a love triangle as such, but two awesome male leads that were hugely likeable, that by the end I was completely torn about who I preferred more. Chaol was a lot more reserved than Dorian, he never gave too much away of how he was feeling, but I also loved his quick temperament, like Celaena he could come back with awesome one liners, and the time he and Celaena spent together training I extremely looked forward to just for the banter back and forth between them.

“Where are you going?
To rest my limbs and my lungs
yes well hopefully you’ll read something of quality before I see you again.
He sniffed the air as he walked out of the room. Hopefully you’ll
have a bath before I see you again”

An added bonus in this story is that we are treated with the occasional alternative pov’s from Chaol and Dorian, which I immensely enjoyed; they provided great, but brief insights into their characters.

I’m glad to say the secondary characters were also an integral part of the story, I find that I enjoy a story much more when the secondary characters provide so much to the plot instead of flitting in the background. Individually they provided several additional storylines around the main competition, from arrogant competitor Cain, to the irksome Lady Kaltain, the unreadable princess Nehemia and adorable Nox.

I could probably harp on about this book for ever, how the world building was immense, how Celaena, Chaol, and Dorian snuck their way to my heart and will leave an ingrained imprint, how at times it had me so fired up, but then at other times it had me jittery with nerves, how no matter how hard I tried to savour this beautiful book a little bit at a time and drag it out as much as possible, it still left me wanting so much more. All that I can suggest is that everyone should pre-order their copies right away, I have done so and I know I will be recommending this book to everyone.

Throne of Glass was truly a spectacular debut read, this epic book has made me realise that I will never be hesitant again in picking up a book by Sarah J. Maas.

A big thank you to Sam for lending me her copy.


  1. You're so lucky you got to read this book! Everyone I know has been raving about how great this book is. It's made me even more impatient for the release of the book. Celaena seems like such an interesting character. I can't wait to meet her. You seem to have really loved the book, given that you don't give out 5 stars easily. I have no doubt I'll love it too. :)
    Great review, Jasprit.

  2. I wasn't going to read this book yet, but now I need to read it ASAP! Especially as it got a hard-to-get 5 star.
    Okay, Celaena sounds AMAZING and such a perfect kick-ass main character.<3 Dorian and Chaol both sounds lush, I can't wait to swoon over them.(:
    Thank you for such a great review, Jasprit! I really do need to read this RIGHT NOW.

  3. I love that you loved this book Jasprit! I know you don't give out 5 stars lightly so it's really great to see one of my favourite books from this year getting a 5 from you. :) I agree with your points about Celaena. I also adored her snarky, humorous side as much as the tough kick-ass side and can't wait to read about her again. Amazing, amazing review! :)

  4. I'm so glad to see you enjoyed this book Jasprit! Although I've been seeing a lot of raving reviews, I've also read a couple of reviews of disappointed readers, so I was getting a little worried about this one. I'm back to being really excited for the release of this one now!(: Fantastic review! :D

    Ivy Book Bindings

  5. What a great review! Yes, I agree it takes a lot these days to,earn five stars from me as well. I am excited to check this out! I love kick butt characters, excellent world building and intregal characters. I will be sure to read this! Thanks for the recommendation!

  6. I remember Sam giving it five stars too -- and I know how hard it is for both of you to give those away -- so the fact that this has a perfect rating from BOTH of you has me SO excited!! This book just sounds more amazing by the second! Sometimes when I love a book, I literally write out a novel of a review and have to go out and edit things so my review isn't that long LOL but I LOVED that you put in so much info! It makes me want this more! x)

    Amazing review, J! :) <3

  7. Like you, I didn't think much when I first heard the title of this book and kept thinking it wouldn't be for me but, all the reviews, now including yours, have made me think I should give this a go!

  8. Great review! I can't wait to get my hands on this one– sounds fabulous :D and I'm loving this version of the cover... now I can't decide which one is better :P

    Confessions of a Readaholic

  9. Oh, Jasprit, you get me SO excited to read this book! x) I thought this book would be about Celaena's life as an assassin, but I can't be more wrong! It seems like a story about survival set in a kingdom. She reminds me a bit of Katniss, since Celaena is underestimated by other competitors too. :)

    Beautiful, beautiful review, Jasprit! I can't wait to read this book! <3

  10. EEEEEEEE Jasprit! You know what I think of Throne of Glass already ;) GOSH, I am desperate for the next book in the series. I need to know what is going to happen with Celaena, Dorian and Chaol. Sarah's writing is fantastic and I like how the setting felt so alive to me when I read the book. I still can't choose which team I'm on but maybe the next book will help me decide XP

    Awesome review, Jasprit! ♥ Glad you enjoyed it :)

  11. I'm so jealous! This looks AMAZING and your review makes it seem even more so. The concept looks so intriguing and Celaena sounds brilliant. Awesome reveiew, Jasprit! :)

  12. Like you, I felt that this book wasn't for me, but, like you, having read all the fabulous reviews, including yours, I think I'll give it a go. I like when the secondary characters play a big part and both Chaol and Dorian sound awesome. Great review Jaspirit. Glad you loved this so much :)

  13. I've heard some very mixed review about this book, so it's encouraging to see you give it five stars, Jaspirit. I think I'll definitely have to pick it up now! Lovely review! <3

  14. Amazing review Jasprit! I haven't heard yet that Dorian and chaol's Pov occasionally appeared or C was under a different identity for the contest- that's awesome!

  15. Fab review, Jasprit! Almost all my friends in GR who've read this gave this 4 or 5 stars rating! And now you too! I'm glad you loved this! I really can't wait to read this one. :)

  16. Great read. Loved the twist & turns. Loved & hated the ending. Cannot wait for the next book. Hope it comes soon.

    Cleo Rogers (Backpacking Hawaii)


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