Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

{August 6, 2012}   {ARC Review} Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (Throne of Glass #1)

From Goodreads: 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 three 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.


I thoroughly enjoyed this novel.  Celaena’s story is one of heartbreak, and yet there is triumph there as well.  Treated horribly by those around her, forced into tortured slavery, her disposition is phenomenal, and her ability to interact with others as well as she did amazed me.  I have no doubt that I wouldn’t have acted so well in front of the court!  While still always cautious and wary of others, I found Calaena to be a true heroine, even if she is an assassin, and am extremely interested in her back story, which is alluded to throughout the novel, and which I believe is covered in more depth in the prequel novellas that I’m about to scoop up and devour.

Maas has done a superb job creating a story that instantly wraps up the reader within its grasp, and it’s a story that, though long, is virtually perfect.  The wit and banter between the characters, especially Celaena, Dorian, and Westfall, was hilarious and I really liked the dynamics between them all.  I think a love triangle will develop more so in the next book, but I’m definitely routing for Dorian, though Westfall is great too!

This book is fast paced and its fantasy world is intense.  I really liked learning about Wyrdmarks and the Fae magic, though I wouldn’t say that this novel revolves around those elements.  Really, it’s a story of survival, where everyone battles against each other, like in The Hunger Games, but instead of a battle to the death, it’s more like a reality TV show where the loser goes back to wherever they came from.  In Celaena’s case, that would be back to the slave mines, a fate worse than death.  With much riding on the outcome of the sparing and ability tests, Celaena has more than enough on her plate, but something is also stalking her and her opponents.  Throw in the shredded remains of her competitors here and there, and this novel also takes on a mystery as the people of court attempt to figure it out before it’s too late.

With all these numerous elements Maas employs throughout her novel—love, betrayal, mystery, intrigue, murder, mayhem, duels, fancy feasts, and witty banter—this novel is a must read.  Five stars.

I won an ARC of this novel from Becky at Book Bite Reviews, who picked me up a signed copy of this amazing novel during BEA!


Diana Evans says:

I think this is one of my favorite books of all times. I remember picking it up and being sucked in by it. I can’t wait for the second book to come out.

Cally M. says:

I am really looking forward to reading this book because it sounds just like a novel I would love and especially because it’s a story-line I find very original. I also like how you always review the books in a way where you honestly give your opinion without giving away too much of the content. Great work!

I read this book about a couple months ago and I enjoyed it. The beginning is a little slow but overall it’s good I loved her banters with Dorian and Westfall. It’s really cute and smart :D

Nice review!

I finished this 2 weeks ago and i have to say this is one of the best books of 2012….you definitely don’t get many books where women play the lead role.

do check out my review of the book if you have the time here

I just finished this book last month. At first it seems a little slow but then the pace picked up and I’m hooked! I loved it! Can’t wait for the next installment ^^

This sounds like and epic fantasy read! I haven’t read a good fantasy in a while. Definitely going to add it to my to be read pile! Great review :)

Mary Preston says:

I’ve heard great things about THRONE OF GLASS. 5 stars works for me. So glad you liked it.

Suz Reads says:

This book looks great! I love a strong heroine and a book that is fast paced. I’m glad to see how much you liked it and when you said it has everything – “love, betrayal, mystery, intrigue, murder, mayhem, duels, fancy feasts, and witty banter”, I’m thinking it’s perfect for me! I can’t wait to read this book!

Denise Z says:

I have so wanted to read this book and am so glad to have my feelings vindicated by your review. I am glad you enjoyed it and I am even more hungry to dig in :)

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