Review: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Review: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. MaasQueen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #4
Published by Bloomsbury Children's on September 1, 2015
Pages: 656
Format: Hardcover
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Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she's at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past . . .

She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen's triumphant return.

Celaena’s epic journey has captured the hearts and imaginations of millions across the globe. This fourth volume will hold readers rapt as Celaena’s story builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.

Warning: If you haven’t read Heir of Fire, this review contains Heir of Fire Spoilers. I tried NOT to include Queen of Shadows spoilers, but there may be some. So be cautious in reading this review, or don’t read it until you’ve read both Heir of Fire and Queen of Shadows! You’ve been warned…

Moving on! This will be my GIFiest review ever. Because after reading four Throne of Glass Books + the novellas, there are no words to describe how epic these books and Sara J. Maas are. So I required the aid of GIFs this time around. Now, on to the review! Enjoy!


Excuse me, did I say that Heir of Fire broke my feels and stomped all over them? BECAUSE THAT WAS NOTHING COMPARED TO QUEEN OF SHADOWS! This book hit me right in the feels!


Like… WHAT EVEN?!?!?! HOW?!?!? WHAT?!?!?! WHY?!?!?!


But seriously, after a year-long wait – especially after the way Heir of Fire ended – Sarah J. Maas did NOT disappoint with her fourth book in the Throne of Glass series. The character development, the plot expansion (overall, from book one to book four), the world-building – I’m mind-blown by everything Maas has done and accomplished in these four books!

Celaena/Aelin is, without a doubt, my favorite female MC in all of YA history. She’s strong, brave, kick-ass and yet she’s still vulnerable and still has a lot of growing to do. Which is insane, because she’s grown SO MUCH since Throne of Glass. In Heir of Fire, she embraced/accepted her destiny and became Aelin. But in Queen of Shadows, she still had things she needed to take care of before she could completely let go of Celaena. By the end of the book, Celaena the Assassin fully and completely became Aelin, Queen of Terrasen. I’m excited to finally see her take up her throne.

Oh, Chaol… I was pretty angry with Chaol for most of the book. He had every right to be angry with Aelin, after everything they went through. But it was like he wanted to use her as his scapegoat and just blame her for everything. I hated that they constantly argued and I hated the things he said to her. But he definitely had moments where he redeemed himself. And I’m willing to cut him some slack because he was dealt some pretty tough blows between the end of Heir of Fire and throughout Queen of Shadows. In the end, I’m happy with the way his story played out. I can’t wait to see what happens for him next, especially with Nesryn. I REALLY ship them and have my fingers crossed they get their happily ever after!

As for Dorian… My goodness, I don’t even know what to say. Dorian has been through an emotional and physical ringer. My heart breaks for him! There were some EPIC revelations with him and the people who were… close… to him. There was also this crazy twist with him and a particular character and.. GAH! You know what, I can’t even discuss it because it’s too spoilery. But it was VERY intriguing…

ROWAN!!! OMFG, I love Rowan!


For the first two books, I was one hundred percent Team Chaol. And I liked Rowan in Heir of Fire, but I wasn’t completely sold. But after Queen of Shadows??? No contest. Aelin and Rowan are my OTP of the Throne of Glass world! He’s strong, brave and loyal. He risked everything to stand by Aelin. And I loved him.

In Heir of Fire, I couldn’t stand Manon and the chapters with her and her Thirteen. At the beginning of Queen of Shadows, I felt similarly. But at some point, certain things happened and certain revelations were made and my opinion did a complete 180! I actually really love the progression of their story and the things we learned and I’m VERY excited to see where things go for Manon, Asterin and Elide in the fifth book!

Another character I really loved was Lysandra. Which… considering her past? It’s weird to like her now. But she really redeemed herself – for so many reasons and in so many ways! Also, was it just me… I totally shipped Lysandra and Aedion!!! (Well, I know I’m not alone – Stacee and I had a full discussion regarding this ship and we agreed!). Also, obviously, I adored Aedion and the moment when he and Aelin finally met again… I CAN’T EVEN!!!!!


Maas wrapped up a LOT of storylines in Queen of Shadows. There was a great feeling of closure on a number of plots and characters. But that also meant that a lot of things from the past were brought up – including Sam – and my heart couldn’t handle it!


The last 100 pages had me like:


The character development, the plot twists, the revelations.. I… I… I JUST CAN”T!!!!!!!! IS IT SEPTEMBER 2016 YET?!?!?!? I NEED BOOK FIVE NOW!!!!!

*Clears throat.* So… Can you tell how much I loved this book? Can you tell how badly it broke me? Do I even need to tell you that I HIGHLY recommend this book and that you need to buy it? Or that, if you haven’t read the first three books, you NEED to? Well, I’m going to anyway… I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK! IT’S A MUST READ!! IF YOU HAVEN’T READ THIS SERIES, YOU MUST!!!!


What are you still doing here? Go buy it! Go read it! Go!!



Review: Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Heir of Fire by Sarah J. MaasHeir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #3
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens on September 2, 2014
Pages: 565
Source: the publisher
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Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy.

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?

Heir of Fire has broken my feels and stomped all over them. That is all.

Okay, kidding. I have way more to say than that. But that about sums it up! The ending of Crown of Midnight was pretty intense, but everyone warned me that Heir of Fire would break me – and it did. It was intense, insane, crazy. After reading all four (The Assassin’s Blade included) Throne of Glass books in one month, I’m emotionally drained and I have an epic book hangover.

Celaena has always been a kick-ass, take-no-prisons kind of person. She was broken after the events that occurred between the end of The Assassin’s Blade and the beginning of Throne of Glass. She built herself back up between Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight, but she still tried to forget about her past and deny who she really was. But finally, in Heir of Fire, Celaena slowly comes to accept her past, who she is and what she needs to do. She trains and fights and goes through the emotional ringer – first with Rowan, then with all the bad guys she faces throughout the book. Every time she was broken down, she struggled to come back from the blow. At times, it felt like she wouldn’t be able to come back, that she had finally spiraled down into a dark abyss. But in the end, Celaena triumphed. It was a struggle and she suffered tremendous heartbreak, but this book definitely set Celaena up to be incredibly fierce and strong in book four.

Chaol. Oh, Chaol. I adore Chaol so much. I’m Team Chaol. I felt so bad for him though. He basically lost everyone he cared about in Heir of Fire. He worked so hard to protect everyone, to show loyalty to the king and still fight for what was right. I’m happy with the way his story ended in Heir of Fire. It feels right for his character and I’m eager to see what that means for him in book four.

As for Dorian.. I still don’t ship him with Celaena (Sorry Team Dorian!) but I really liked him in this book. He has a kind heart and it’s obvious he’ll be an amazing king one day. I seriously hope, before the series is done, we get to see him as King of Adarlan. I can totally see him righting all the wrongs of his father. But the journey to become king… After that ending? OMG!!! I think Dorian’s story was the one that hit me the hardest. That ending… What happened.. I.. I… I CAN’T TALK ABOUT IT BECAUSE OF SPOILERS BUT IT BROKE ME!!!!!!!

Sarah J. Maas writes epic, amazing characters. Whether they be secondary, tertiary or so in the background, we don’t even learn their name – they all stick with you for one reason or another. It’s really hard to talk about some of them while avoiding spoilers. But I absolutely LOVED Aedion, Rowan, Emrys, Luca, Malakai and Sorscha – though not all of them got happily ever afters and I’m DYING to get my hands on book four to see what happens next for those still… okay.

My biggest complaint with Heir of Fire was that it was REALLY long. I don’t mind reading long books, but there were several sections in Heir of Fire that dragged and were boring – like the ones with Manon. I HATED most of the scenes with Manon and that group of characters (Er.. being vague to avoid spoilers). I liked Manon and Abraxos together, though.

To counter that complaint, I loved all the background we got in Heir of Fire. We learned a LOT about Celaena’s past and what happened Before. We even got a glimpse into what the future could bring, if all goes well.

I’ve mentioned this a little bit throughout my review, but the ending was MIND-BLOWING!!!!!!!! I feel broken and drained and I can’t believe all the crazy things that happened in such a short amount of time near the very end. I’d say the last 15-20% (I was reading an eBook so I don’t have exact page numbers) of the book was intense and the intensity never let up!

After a month of reading the Throne of Glass series, I can officially say this series is amazing. Each book gets better and better. And Sarah J. Maas is an epic, amazing writer. She has created an incredible world with amazing, well-rounded characters. She has broken my feels and I may never recover. And…. WHEN CAN I HAVE BOOK FOUR?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?! I need it!!!!!

So basically, if you haven’t read Heir of Fire – or any of the Throne of Glass series – you NEED to. Prepare your feels, grab some tissues and read them ASAP! Sarah J. Maas is now forever on my “Auto-Buy Author List” and I can’t wait for Throne of Glass #4, as well as her new series, A Court of Thorns and Roses!


Review: Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Review: Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. MaasCrown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #2
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens on August 27, 2013
Pages: 420
Format: Hardcover
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"A line that should never be crossed is about to be breached.

It puts this entire castle in jeopardy—and the life of your friend."

From the throne of glass rules a king with a fist of iron and a soul as black as pitch. Assassin Celaena Sardothien won a brutal contest to become his Champion. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown. She hides her secret vigilantly; she knows that the man she serves is bent on evil.

Keeping up the deadly charade becomes increasingly difficult when Celaena realizes she is not the only one seeking justice. As she tries to untangle the mysteries buried deep within the glass castle, her closest relationships suffer. It seems no one is above questioning her allegiances—not the Crown Prince Dorian; not Chaol, the Captain of the Guard; not even her best friend, Nehemia, a foreign princess with a rebel heart.

Then one terrible night, the secrets they have all been keeping lead to an unspeakable tragedy. As Celaena's world shatters, she will be forced to give up the very thing most precious to her and decide once and for all where her true loyalties lie...and whom she is ultimately willing to fight for.

On a scale of one to ten, Crown of Midnight was a twenty… thousand… million… and one. Sarah J. Maas blew the lid off the notion of Second Book Syndrome – which I know is typically something reserved for trilogies anyway. Unfortunately, I’ve come to expect Second Book Syndrome from every series of every length. But Crown of Midnight did NOT read like a second book. It stood on its own and blew my mind.

Like I said in my review for Throne of Glass: Celaena is a kick-ass bitch. She’s fierce and loyal to those she trusts. She’s amazing at what she does, yet DESPITE what she does, she’s still managed to hold on to her humanity – for the most part. I can’t say much without risking spoilers, but the things she did in the first half of the book were epic. What happened in the second half though… My heart broke for her. She was broken and lost, lashing out at whoever she could. But, as always, Celaena can handle herself and she did what needed to be done. The reveal with Celeaena at the end was epic, insane, crazy… But I figured it out 83 pages in, so it was more about the validation than the shock of finding out for sure that I was right.

I adore Chaol! He’s just.. Chaol! I love the way he and Celaena strengthen each other. In some ways, they bring out the best in each other. And in some ways, they bring out the worst in each other. They’re definitely working on building the trust, but they challenge each other. What happened between them half-way through the book, though… And then the things left unsaid at the end? IT BROKE MY FEELS!

Dorian was a thousand times more awesome in Crown of Midnight than he was in Throne of Glass – and that’s really saying something because I already really liked him in Throne of Glass. His is a very heavy burden to bear, one he still has to come to terms with. But he grew and matured a LOT in Crown of Midnight – though I suppose he didn’t have much of a choice. Still, he really came through in the end and I’m very eager to see where his character goes in Heir of Fire.

For the most part, I really loved Nehemia, but I was very suspicious of her all throughout Crown of Midnight. I thought I had finally started trusting her by the end of Throne of Glass, but there were just too many things going on in Crown of Midnight.. And then the end of Part One.. Oh, man.. I can’t even.. Another notable character was Archer. I actually really liked Archer and trusted him right from the beginning. I never doubted his loyalties or his motives. But… Hm…

Despite being epic, Crown of Midnight still had its moments. There were sections that were a bit boring and small plot points that dragged. The book could have been 50-75 pages shorter and still epic. It was also pretty predictable; I’d say I guessed over half of the plot twists, both major and minor. Despite all that, Crown of Midnight still had some epic revelations and crazy plot twists. I still love all the characters and I have a feeling Heir of Fire is going to completely and utterly break me.

Overall, I really, really enjoyed Crown of Midnight. Though I wouldn’t call it my favorite in the series, it was better than Throne of Glass, had some major twists and turns and kept me engaged and interested, even during several boring sections. Crown of Midnight stands tall as an epic sequel, with no traces of Second Book Syndrome in sight. If you weren’t a fan of Throne of Glass but are debating reading on, I highly encourage you to do so. I was told each book is better than the last and, so far, that statement is holding true!


Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. MaasThrone of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #1
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens on August 2, 2012
Pages: 404
Format: Hardcover
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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.

I was really terrified to read Throne of Glass after reading – and not really enjoying – The Assassin’s Blade, the compilation of all the prequel novellas. While I don’t regret reading The Assassin’s Blade first, I don’t think it was necessary to do so and I think I would have enjoyed reading Throne of Glass with or without it. It was certainly intriguing knowing some of Celaena’s background and knowing about a certain fellow assassin. But otherwise, I feel like I actually missed out on some important references in the novellas by reading them first. Someone on Twitter told me Celaena meets Dorian and Chaol in one of the novellas and, had I read Throne of Glass first, I would have picked up on that.

That being said, I really did love Throne of Glass. My fear kept me from picking it up for about a day and a half after finishing The Assassins Blade, but once I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down! I basically read it in two days! I loved the way the book started (it was a nice tie-in to The Assassin’s Blade), I loved the plot and I loved the characters. And, as mentioned in my review of The Assassin’s Blade, I love Maas’s writing and world-building skills.

Celaena is still a kick-ass bitch in Throne of Glass, though she feels a bit defeated in the beginning. It was hard seeing her that way, knowing how fierce she was in The Assassin’s Blade (one of the perks/draw-backs of reading The Assassin’s Blade first). I knew Celaena could be strong-willed, knew she could take care of herself. But I also knew she had been betrayed many times before and was scarred from those betrayals. She didn’t trust easily and was convinced her fate was sealed – that she was doomed. She picks herself up, though, and pushes forward, accepting that whatever will be, will be. She knows how to pick and choose her battles.

Though there was a love triangle and some insta-love (two things I’m not crazy about, though I don’t let them ruin the story for me), I truly loved this love triangle and everyone involved, so it was hard to be upset by it. In fact, I’m still torn on which team I’m on! There were moments, unfortunately, where the love triangle was very predictable, though..

Dorian was hilarious and kind, casually flirting back-and-forth with Celaena. He was a bit stereotypical, in that he was intimidating, as the crown prince, yet also laid back in his demeanor and not as scary as he seemed. As is typical of YA lit, he also despised his father and the things his father stood for – the things his father did. And though I liked Dorian already, something he did about halfway through the book changed my whole opinion about him and made me like him even more.

Chaol was so serious and proper in the beginning. I loved the way Celaena got under his skin so easily! They had a wonderful rapport, though, and I liked them together. Chaol is so sweet and protective – in a slightly brooding way. Kinda like Angel! Except, not so tortured.. I had heard truly swoony things about Chaol, but I wasn’t entirely convinced in the beginning. He was very guarded and distant for the first half (maybe less) of the book, so it took me awhile to really get to know him and like him.

I really liked Nehemia. She was a good, kind friend, though I definitely had my suspicions about her at times. And we’re definitely led to believe that we SHOULD be suspicious of her.. I kept praying that she wouldn’t turn out to be a back-stabber, the way a certain character was in one of the novellas. For Celaena’s sake, I just kept hoping it wasn’t true… And, well, you’ll just have to read the story to find out what happened with her!

Another secondary character I liked a lot was Nox. In another life, I think he could have been an amazing friend and ally to Celaena. I really hope we see him in future books. Also, the whole storyline with Elena was intriguing and I’m SURE it will play a bigger role in future books.

Characters I despised (for obvious reasons) and wanted to bitch slap were the King, Perrington, Cain and basically every single champion that aligned themselves with Cain. I can’t talk about Kaltain without MAJOR spoilers.. But omg I wanted to bitch slap her!!! And then I also felt bad for her at the same time.. Kind of confusing! But again, this is spoiler territory… So, yeah..

The ending was pretty insane and crazy and HOLY CRAP. There were several things that happened that I didn’t expect at all, but there were also some things that happened that I could see a mile away. It made for an interesting mix of surprise and intrigue. I’m definitely glad I didn’t give up on this series after reading The Assassin’s Blade. I’m very eager to read Crown of Midnight – and I’ve heard epic, ridiculous, insane things about Heir of Fire that make me terrified to pick it up (But not in the way I was terrified to pick Throne of Glass up).

Despite one not-so-great read (The Assassin’s Blade) and thanks to one amazing read (Throne of Glass), I can say with absolute certainty that this series is amazing, I’m sorry I didn’t read it sooner and I highly recommend it to everyone. It’s a must-read!


Review: The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas

Review: The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. MaasThe Assassin's Blade by Sarah J. Maas
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens on March 4, 2014
Pages: 435
Format: Hardcover
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Discover where Celaena Sarthodien's thrilling saga began

Celaena Sarthodien is her kingdom's most feared assassin. Though she works for the powerful and ruthless Assassin's Guild, she yields for no one and trusts only her fellow killer for hire, Sam.

When Celaena's scheming master, Arobynn Hamel, dispatches her on missions that take her from remote islands to hostile deserts, she finds herself acting independently of his wishes--and questioning her own allegiance. Along the way, she discovers friends and enemies alike, and discovers that she feels far more for Sam than just friendship. But by defying Arobynn's orders, Celaena riskes unimaginable punishment, and with Sam by her side, he is in danger, too. They will have to risk it all if they hope to escape Arobynn's clutches--and if they fail, they'll lose not just a chance at freedom, but their lives....

A prequel to Throne of Glass, this collection of five novellas offers readers a deeper look into the history of this cunning assassin and her enthralling--and deadly--world.

Included in this volume:

The Assassin and the Pirate Lord
The Assassin and the Healer
The Assassin and the Desert
The Assassin and the Underworld
The Assassin and the Empire

When I first picked up The Assassin’s Blade, I was really excited to read it. I’ve heard so many amazing things about the Throne of Glass books. I was gifted Throne of Glass over a year ago by a good friend. People have been DEMANDING I read this series. So I’ve finally started! Unfortunately, The Assassin’s Blade did NOT meet my expectations.

So, why did I read The Assassin’s Blade before Throne of Glass (the official first book in the series)? I had a lot of people telling me to read The Assassin’s Blade first – they said they wished they had read it first because they would have understood and liked Throne of Glass more if they had. Some even said they re-read Throne of Glass after reading The Assassin’s Blade.

But then I had other people telling me to put The Assassin’s Blade down and read Throne of Glass first – they said it would be easier to understand the characters and world in The Assassin’s Blade if I read Throne of Glass first.

So, of course, my head was spinning and I was completely confused. But I had been set on reading The Assassin’s Blade for a long time – so long, in fact, that I tried picking up Throne of Glass and had to put it down because I’m a mood reader and I was too set on The Assassin’s Blade and, therefore, not at all in the mood for Throne of Glass.

I went into The Assassin’s Blade with high expectations for two reasons. One: Everyone LOVES Sarah J. Maas and her books. Two: I was, personally, very excited for The Assassin’s Blade. When I first picked it up in the bookstore, I read twenty pages and couldn’t put it down.

While I loved the characters, the world-building and Maas’s writing style, I wasn’t thrilled with any of the plots of the novellas. I rated each novella individually, then averaged them together. Overall, I gave The Assassin’s Blade a 3-star rating. Since I’ve never reviewed a novella compilation before, I’m just going to break this down and discuss each novella, plus I’ll include each individual star rating.

Here we go:

The Assassin and the Pirate Lord – Rating: 3 stars
As I mentioned, I had high expectations for this book, but especially for this first novella. The first twenty pages were what convinced me I HAD to buy it and read it first. But after the first twenty pages, things went downhill, fast. First of all, I’m not a huge fan of books that involve slavery of any kind. I’m also not that into books with pirates… Unless it’s Captain Jack Sparrow. Then I’ll make an exception ;)

I really like Celaena. She’s a tough bitch with a kind heart, which is an odd/rare combination, but also a perfect combination. She does what she has to to survive, but she has morals and lines she refuses to cross. She can take care of herself, but she’s not invincible and knows when to ask for help, though she does so a bit stubbornly.

I adored Sam! I liked the progression of his relationship with Celaena. They didn’t start out instantly in love. It took time and trust and, even at the end of The Assassin and the Pirate Lord, they still weren’t in the best of places. Though I could definitely feel the shift in their relationship when it happened.

I liked seeing life inside the Assassin’s Keep. I wish we had gotten to know Ben, though. He sounded like an amazing character. I never trusted Arobynn, not even for one second. I wanted him to be like a father figure to Celaena, but I knew it wasn’t in his nature, unfortunately.

I think my biggest issue with The Assassin and the Pirate Lord was definitely the plot. It was slow and boring and not something I’m a fan of. I also didn’t really like any of the secondary characters.

The Assassin and the Healer – Rating: 3.5 stars
I actually really enjoyed The Assassin and the Healer, though it still wasn’t my favorite of the five (maybe second favorite?). I liked the setting a lot, as well as the secondary characters. It was the shortest novella and likely meant just to be filler to get to the third novella, but it was enjoyable. It was interesting seeing Celaena out of her element and on her own, without Sam, Arobynn or any other familiar faces. I really like Yrene, but what are the odds we’ll ever see her again, outside of this single novella? For that reason, I tried not to get too attached. However, Celaena’s interactions with Yrene proved that, deep down, Celaena is a kind person with a warm heart. I liked seeing that side of her.

The Assassin and the Desert – Rating: 3.5 stars
I loved the plot, the secondary characters (Ansel, Mikhail, Ilias and the Mute Master) and the lessons learned in this novella. Going into it, I was nervous that it would be Celaena traveling in the desert for weeks by herself (boring!) so I’m glad Maas skipped all that and went right into the action of the main plot.

The Assassin and the Desert definitely had a lot of action and betrayal. I was so upset with where things ended for most of the characters and I felt so bad for Celaena. That said, I can see Ansel playing a major part in one of the main books. I’m eager to see her and Celaena reunite!

Sadly, despite being my favorite of the novellas, The Assassin and the Desert still had small sections that were slow and a bit boring. Certain things annoyed me, though I don’t think I can really explain why.. They just did. But, as I said, it was still my favorite, despite these small issues.

The Assassin and the Underworld – Rating: 3 stars
The title of this novella had me really excited. I took the title literally and assumed all the wrong things. So that was a bit disappointing. I also found this novella to be the most slow and boring of the five.

With this novella, my distrust in Arobynn increased tenfold. I was so mad at Celaena for not questioning Arobynn more, though Sam was incredibly suspicious of him and sort of made up for Celaena’s behavior. I definitely fell for Sam in this novella, which was such a bad idea.. Someone on Twitter spoiled me regarding his fate, yet I still let myself fall hard for him. Sigh.

Though this novella had a handful of good – and even intriguing – moments, I was mostly just bored and disappointed.

The Assassin and the Empire – Rating: 3.5 stars
I mentally and emotionally braced myself for this novella. As I mentioned, the major plot point in this one was spoiled for me. But I didn’t know how or why it happened, so that was still a shock – though, as I’ve said, I never trusted Arobynn, so that part wasn’t a shock at all! Even knowing what would happen, my heart still broke into a million tiny pieces. *SOBS*

The ending of The Assassin and the Empire was definitely the most intriguing/exciting/crazy/etc of all the novellas. Sadly, it was also really predictable. In The Assassin and the Underworld, Celaena was tricked. But in The Assassin and the Empire she was played – big time! I knew by whom and I had a good guess as to why.. But seeing the actual explanation was a bit shocking.


Overall, The Assassin’s Blade was an interesting read. I loved the characters and world. Maas is a great writer! But I really couldn’t get into the plots of the novellas. Some of them were slow and boring, some just were about subjects that I don’t normally like to read. Each one had certain moments that were enjoyable or memorable. There were some amazing secondary characters that I truly hope we’ll meet again in later books.

As for reading The Assassin’s Blade before Throne of Glass? I should probably wait until I read Throne of Glass to see how I feel about it. But as of right now, I definitely have no regrets. The Assassin’s Blade is described as being a prequel. In my eyes, reading it first was the only logical thing to do.

Final Thoughts: Despite being bored with The Assassin’s Blade and its plots, I’m still very excited to read Throne of Glass. I like the flow of the stories in The Assassin’s Blade and I like where it ends, setting things up perfectly for the beginning of Throne of Glass.