I’m very behind in my reading updates, mostly because I’ve been procrastinating doing the update for this series because it is so long and so much happens! Comprising numbers 20-26 of this years total read count, The Throne of Glass Series by Sarah J Maas is made up of books by these names: Throne of Glass, Crown of Midnight, Heir of Fire, Queen of Shadows, Empire of Storms, Tower of dawn and Kingdom of Ash. There is also a prequel book called Assassins Blade but by the time I got through all 6 I really ran out of steam, so I’ve decided to come back to that one.
An awful attempt at summarising
So, the story opens with Celeana being taken from the Slave mines of Endovier, where she has been held for a year, by the Prince of Ardalan, Dorian Havilliard, and his Captain of the guard, Chaol Westfall. They make a bargain with her, she will become the Prince’s candidate in his father’s competition to find his ‘champion’ (essentially a glorified assassin) in return for her freedom. Before her imprisonment, Celeana was known as ‘Ardalan’s assassin’, for her efforts during the war where Ardalan invaded and overthrew the royal families of the surrounding kingdoms.
The first book follows this competition and the politics of Ardalan’s royal court, where we quickly discover that there’s more to who Celeana is than just being a mysterious assassin. The rest of the books follow the unveiling of her true history, her power and destiny.
I don’t know how else to summarise this without spoilers…
What did I think?
I loved this series! The relationships, platonic, familial and romantic are fantastic. All the characters have so much depth. Your heart will break, multiple times. So much happens, the summary above doesn’t even touch the sides, I just couldn’t go further without massively spoiling it. The world building is rich, the magic system is well thought out and all the detours the characters take on their long journey to victory felt justified, instead of it just being done to long the story out to get more books. In fact Tower of Dawn literally only covers one set of character’s POV’s, which happens in conjunction to the timeline of the events that occur to another set of characters in Empire of Storms but it still felt completely necessary to get us to the events in Kingdom of Ash.
Don’t get me wrong, this is a long series and most of them are big books, they are a commitment but if you enjoy epic fantasy, these are definitely worth reading at some point. They are also free of a lot of the issues I’ve found with Sarah J Maas’s writing in series’ like ACOTAR (even though I LOVED those books too), with very few crutch phrases, besides the ‘eyes lined with silver’ (to describe crying). Whereas ACOTAR famously has loads of these crutch phrases.
It was very easy to get completely absorbed into the world of these books, I thoroughly enjoyed reading them and they were the cause of a fair few late nights. The next big Sarah J Maas series left is Crescent City but those books are huge, so I will be getting to them in a little while I think.