[Review] Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #1
Publication: August 7th, 2012 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Number of Pages: 404
Genre: High fantasy, YA, Romance
Source: Public library
Rating: ★★★

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Summary

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.


Review

It was okay.

Celaena almost felt like a Mary-Sue. Her personality grated on me in some ways and was welcome in others.

I don’t know if I like her yet. I liked her confidence and her relatability as a girl. I liked how she was so badass. But I did not like how she made enemies with everybody with her cocky attitude. I did not like how she fell head over heels for Prince Dorian (I like Chaol more okay?!). I didn’t like the way she thought she was the best at freaking everything. So I’m really just stuck here in the middle.

Going back to the romance… I don’t care that there was a love triangle. The thing that I’m a little unhappy about is the first thing that I mentioned not liking in the above paragraph. Celaena was supposed to be a badass assassin that fell for no one. I’m all for strong, badass characters that can simultaneously be feminine and beautiful. But in this case, I found it ridiculous that she was getting so much attention for simply being an assassin with a “heart”.

The writing style was not to my liking. I heard that this was first published and in that regard, I can tell. As a fanfiction reader, there are certain styles of writing that I have learned to avoid because it is always paired with either a trope or a cliche plot. One of those is the detailed description of every single outfit and meal ever eaten. I do not understand why every single outfit needs to be described. I feel like it takes away my freedom to imagine the outfit. In the world of fanfiction, authors will spend time linking their readers to a specific picture of an outfit. It’s a huge pet peeve of mine because as much as I love clothes, a character’s outfit isn’t always important to a plot. I understand that Celaena liked clothes a lot but as a self-proclaimed fashion obsessed girl, I personally would never spend that much time describing my outfit.

We got to see the progression of the book from multiple POVs (Celaena and Dorian just to name a few). The plot itself was okay. I liked how the characters were eliminated one by one. It felt like a high stakes game show. But I honestly thought that the challenges would have been so much more unique. I love myself a competition with challenging events but they were just so… boring? The only one I really liked was probably the poisons competition but even that was pretty simple.

And the world building. I was confused. Very confused. So what I remember from this book is that Celaena was the assassin for the opposite side, got caught, got thrown into slavery, and then was released for the competition to become the King’s Champion. Then there’s Celaena who really does not want to do this because obviously, her home was pretty much destroyed by them. There’s some stuff about magic being banned because and stuff…. okay what you pretty much can get from my struggle to remember anything is that the world building fell flat for me. I never fully understood the magical elements of the story. In fact, I nearly forgot that there was any magic actually present in the book.

The ending felt anticlimatic. The entire plot didn’t really have much of a rise and fall in excitement for me. I was generally unimpressed with it. I predicted how it would end. And right now I’m not even sure what’s gonna happen in the sequel. The entire point of the first book was the contest. I don’t know what’s gonna happen in the next book.

I didn’t like the first book all that much but I will be picking up the second because I’ve heard that it is a lot better. I’m willing to give this series another chance because even if it was only “okay”, I enjoyed it enough to read more.


I obviously didn’t like this one all that much. And can someone tell me the difference between epic and high fantasy? I’ve seen this labelled as both and I don’t know what’s the difference >.< I’m gonna try out the next book soon!

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14 comments

  1. My heart does a wee little dance when I find fellow minded people who doesn’t think Celaena’s all that. I found her really childish and annoying and UNSUBTLE. LIKE WTF SHE ATE CANDY LEFT BY AN UNKNOWN PERSON THOUGH CHAMPIONS WERE BEING KILLED LEFT AND RIGHT?! Where’s your brain and super assassin skills you and the book keeps harping on about? The plot was also so slow and pointless it nearly put me to sleep. I really disliked this book. I am tempted to start CoM though cos it apparently improves on this. But I am still super wary. Oops sorry this turned into a massive rant.

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  2. I’m super happy that I’m not the only one because god it’s just soooo overhyyyyyped. I was more bothered by Celaena’s overall attitude than her character but I agree with you about the plot! There’s literally no plot that’s really developed. The fantasy part is confusingly, and rarely explored. I’m still confused about it.
    Haha no it’s fine! I just got a copy of CoM but I’m waiting until I get in the right mood to read it!

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  3. I plan on reading this one soon! But I’m worried :S I’m going to go into reading it knowing I won’t like the book and Celaena. I don’t like conceited characters, esp. Mary Sues! A lot of people say it gets better as the series progresses though, I hope they’re right. I think Celaena got so much attention is because she’s a Mary Sue. Anyway, great review Kelly!

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