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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Throne of Glass series is one I've had in my to read pile for what seems like an age, and I’m so glad I finally chose it!
Synopsis:

Throne of Glass focuses on a young woman named Celaena Sardothien. She has been imprisoned for her crimes against the crown – she is the youngest and most deadly assassin the land has ever seen. But after getting caught and given a life sentence to work in a salt mine, she is given the chance at redemption. Participate in a contest to become the...
Published 2 months ago by The Bibliophile Chronicles

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68 of 73 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A charming and witty dose of the naive nostalgia of childhood fairytales
I've been waiting for this book to be released since I read some of it on FictionPress.com more than 5 years ago. If its original hook of 'What if Cinderella had been sent to the ball to kill the prince?' had been kept, it would have made things a lot simpler. It's a great read, but not quite for the reasons it's been hyped up to be. It's an action-packed coming-of-age...
Published on 4 Aug 2012 by Olive C.


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68 of 73 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A charming and witty dose of the naive nostalgia of childhood fairytales, 4 Aug 2012
By 
Olive C. (Oxford, England, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
I've been waiting for this book to be released since I read some of it on FictionPress.com more than 5 years ago. If its original hook of 'What if Cinderella had been sent to the ball to kill the prince?' had been kept, it would have made things a lot simpler. It's a great read, but not quite for the reasons it's been hyped up to be. It's an action-packed coming-of-age romance set in a fairytale world, with all the intrigues, impossibilities and archetypes that that implies.

If you like that sort of thing, buy this book. If you read and liked the original version, buy this book. You're guaranteed to love it, so I'm going to write this review for people who don't know what to expect and who are a bit hesitant or sceptical. If you believe the hype and nothing else, you might find the story a bit too much, but if you go in knowing what you should REALLY expect, you'll find it an enjoyable, perceptive, read.

The facts are these. Celaena Sardothien, previously Assassin of Adarlan, is retrieved from prison camp by Captain Chaol Westfall, to represent Crown Prince Dorian in a tournament devised by his father, the despotic king of Adarlan, to find a Royal Champion. If she succeeds, Celaena will be the king's personal assassin for 4 years before being pardoned and freed. But as well as winning the competition, there is something evil lurking in the glass castle, that Celaena must destroy...

Now, what makes Celaena a fairytale heroine rather than a kick-ass warrior? She not only boasts the status of greatest assassin (and when I say boasts, I mean: Celaena herself boasts, and then some), she also happens to be a stunning 18-year-old girl, complete with a blurry past, a sense of honour that (she feels) distinguishes her from street criminals, and a dislike of corsets that (she feels) distinguishes her from backstabbing courtly ladies. 19-year-old Prince Dorian is THE stereotypical exception to the rule: he's a pampered, unassertive idealist, but his pseudo-scholarly charm is a great threat to Celaena's would-be populist prejudices! Proof of their shared exceptional status? THEY LIKE TO READ.

Luckily, once you're armed against these two rather insufferable personages, the book is actually a lot more intelligent than it sounds. Celaena and Dorian are off-set by the exceptional Chaol (the Captain), who alone makes the book worth reading, and Nehemia, a visiting princess from a conquered land. Chaol - totally un-archetypal and instantly likeable, even if it's ridiculous that he made it to Captain at 22 - persistently reminds Dorian that he's a privileged prince whether he claims to like it or not, and Nehemia is learned and captivating, a grounding influence on Celaena whose naive self-righteousness might otherwise have been unbearable. It's also quite bold to give the characteristic, undiluted arrogance of the villain to the heroine. Celaena's constant bragging is vindicated by her struggle to make her weakened body match up to her own glorious notions about her abilities, and by Chaol's faith in her, reluctant but 100% sincere. And surprisingly enough considering both the genre and the characters, the romantic element of the book is extremely well played.

I won't go into the pros and cons of the story because the plot followed the pattern of 'I can see what's coming from a mile away but I still can't put it down'. As for the writing, it's full of vivid descriptions, plain but acute characterisation, and some extremely witty remarks and exchanges. There were occasional anachronisms, and the inevitable, but still depressing, 'from whence'; but overall, the book is charmingly written. The author has talent and a likeable style, and this is a novel she started when she was 16; I expect she'll become a real gem of YA Fantasy with her subsequent books.

Like I said, if you like character-driven fairytales, buy this book, you're guaranteed to love it. If you don't HATE them, it's still worth a try for its perceptive take on its own clearly defined genre. The story's origins are betrayed by the fact that its view of its well-drawn world, with an empire in chaos, is limited to the perspective of beautiful, important people (and by the 'glass' retained in the title, which is, otherwise, not very relevant), but that shouldn't, and doesn't, condemn it. As infuriating as the characters may sometimes be, and despite the obvious plot, this is a pretty accurate portrayal of what Good But Flawed people at the top are likely to feel. I won't lie, it's not for people who can't stomach characters who are superior to their peers in class, motives and ability; but for people who are interested in the struggles of characters in that situation, this take on it is deceptively resonant.

The characters that drive this story are ridiculously young, but the book knows that, and gives them room to grow, and learn. If I could give this 3 and a half stars I would, because it's far more than average, but it clearly needs its subsequent instalments to round itself off perfectly - as far as I recall, the original story really got going after the tournament. But that isn't to say I didn't enjoy this book, because I couldn't put it down and read it in one sitting. It's a promising and charming introduction to an ambitious series, and I for one am certainly interested to see where Celaena will be going next.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Throne of Glass series is one I've had in my to read pile for what seems like an age, and I’m so glad I finally chose it!, 2 Oct 2014
This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
Synopsis:

Throne of Glass focuses on a young woman named Celaena Sardothien. She has been imprisoned for her crimes against the crown – she is the youngest and most deadly assassin the land has ever seen. But after getting caught and given a life sentence to work in a salt mine, she is given the chance at redemption. Participate in a contest to become the King’s Champion, and her freedom will be granted, but then she must work for the king she despises. Celaena must fight to win the competition and her freedom.

Review:

This book seems very much to have divided opinion, it has hundreds of fans, but many people have said the book just wasn't for them. I for one enjoyed it, particularly because it is so easy to fall into, I definitely stayed up longer than I should have done reading it, and it’s the sort of story you continue to think about long after you've put it down. Immediately I was hooked! There’s plenty of mystery and intrigue, especially towards the second half of the story in which the various contenders begin to mysteriously die. There’s plenty of sword fighting, magic and romance to appeal to every kind of reader. The story flows well and it’s a very easy read it. The characters are written very well, although I will admit that the arrogance of the protagonist did get a little grating. One of the things I particularly enjoyed is the clever ways in which Maas demonstrates Celaena’s skills. Practically anything can be a weapon and there are some really great scenes where even a hairpin gets her out of trouble.

A large chunk of the story also focuses on the love triangle between Celaena, Dorian and Captain Westfall. If you aren't a fan of this sort of story arc, then perhaps I’d stay clear of this one. Although a large part of the 400 odd page story is focused on the love triangle, it doesn't take away from the story, and I for one wasn't as bothered by it as I have been with previous young adult series.

I recently also read a novelette set previously to this story – The Assassin and the Pirate Lord, it’s a pretty quick read but it’s really interesting if you’re enjoying the series so far. The story is set before Celaena gets caught and is sent to broker a deal with an infamous pirate lord. It highlights that while Celaena is deadly, she has a very strong moral compass and she stands up for others. Overall Throne of Glass is a really enjoyable read and I would love to see more scenes in which Celaena actually assassinates people, the story being focused on the contest leaves little room for that, but with a second book already out and a third coming September 2nd I’m sure there’s plenty more of that on the cards, a highly addictive young adult read.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Throne of Glass - Sarah J. Maas, 1 Sep 2012
This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas received some pretty spectacular reviews prior to its recent release. Based upon these reviews, I went out and purchased a paper copy of the book, something I rarely do as I usually purchasing ebooks. My bookshelves are reserved for keepers and based upon the reviews I figured Throne of Glass would be a keeper. Unfortunately Throne of Glass didn't live up to the hype. Whilst it wasn't a bad book or anything like that, I was disappointed.

Throne of Glass tells the story of Celaena Sardothien a master assassin who has been imprisoned as a slave in a salt mine following a betrayal. Celaena has survived for a year in the brutal environment of the salt-mine where the average life expectancy is1 month. Her life is pretty bleak when the crown prince of Adarlan offers her a chance of freedom. If she competes and wins a competition to become the Kings Champion, she will eventually gain pardon and her freedom. The stinger is, should she fail, she will be returned to the salt-mines, plus her competition are the most gifted thieves and assassins in Adarlan.

My biggest gripe with Throne of Glass was the inconsistencies with both the world and the characters. Celaena was a mass of contradictions. She's billed as a master assassin with a heart of ice and a will of steel but I found her to be a teenager girl fixated on the cute guys surrounding her instead of her rather awful situation. Yes, she's a kick-ass fighter but she's also pretty soft hearted. According to the story, she has lived a difficult life but IMO I thought it had little impact on her - she opens up emotionally to those who have imprisoned her quite easily and wants to believe the best of her friends. Surely, such a difficult life would affect Celaena's ability to trust.

The lack of chemistry between the leads disappointed me. And to honest, I didn't particularly like the prince. He's almost like a spoilt child. I don't like to ruin plot details for readers, so I won't go into specifics but I thought he was weak. Also a pretty one dimensional villain didn't help.

All in all, I loved the premise of the story but I was disappointed with the execution. I've previously read some pretty brilliant books that are somewhat similar, so perhaps these spoilt me.

My Rating: 6/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars My high hopes shattered like glass..., 26 Mar 2014
By 
Kirsty "book fan" (Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
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Doesn't the description and blurb of Throne of Glass sound amazing? YES! Did Throne of Glass live up to expectations and hype? HELL NO!

I have to admit I was sorely disappointed in this book. Instead of a tough, fight for your life tournament filled with badass criminals and assassins, you get a watered down sports day, an awkward love triangle and the preliminary tests for Miss World!!

Celaena had the potential to be one of the strongest female characters in YA books, she could have even rivaled Katniss from Hunger Games and Tris from Divergent, BUT, she's too cocky, shallow, and just plain unlikeable.

The author spends way too much time telling me how deadly Celaena is, but not nearly enough time actually showing her in action or demonstrating her dangerous skills. There was also too much focus on her many ball gowns, various hairstyles and general moaning how she's not pretty enough to have any real depth in the book.

The only things that saved this from being a one or two star review were the scenes with the elven queen and her powers, and the battle at the end of the book. We finally get to see a some action sequences from Celaena, and a glimpse of what she should have been through the whole book. Although an action packed ending doesn't make up for the rest of the book, it did make me glad I didn't give up halfway through.

I highly doubt I'll ever read the sequels in the series though. Honestly, I was expecting Game of Thrones type action, when what I actually got was more Disney princess.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing main character, dull love triangle but vaguely interesting story, 10 Nov 2013
By 
JennyD (Manchester, Uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
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Celaena is the world's best assassin but after getting caught she spends a year in the mines of Endovier, a place where most don't survive beyond a few months. She's given a chance of life. She must fight as the Crown Prince's champion and, if she wins the contests and defeats her opponents she'll become the King's Champion and will be freed after a few years of service. To make matters worse someone is killing off the Champions! We follow Celaena from her removal from the mines to the great glass castle of the King where she slowly befriends guards, makes close friendships with Nehemia (a Princess from another Kingdom) and even falls in love. The most interesting thing about this book is the contest of the champions, the tests they must suffer through and the end duels that the winners have to fight. Bizarrely the focus is instead on the love triangle between the main character and the Captain of the guard and the Crown Prince. None of the characters (bar Nehemia) are very interesting at all and its even more disappointing that this so-called assassin acts more like a silly teenage girl, going on about her appearance, boys and dresses. The amount of times people manage to scare the assassin by their sudden appearance (even sitting next to her at one point without her noticing) is frankly stupid. The author appears to believe she's written a strong female character but in reality Celaena is no such thing. She's frightened all the time and there's simply not enough emphasis on her skills as a fighter and on her stealth abilities. I simply didn't believe Celaena was a assassin, she talks about killing people in the past and has this silly arrogance about her but its all show and no substance and it makes the story seem juvenile. This is also the case with the dialogue which is at times very bad, awkward flirting scenes between Celaena and her love interests that the book could of done without. There's no doubt the book is too long, 50 pages could easily have been cut and the book would have been all the better for it. The question of magic and the mysterious marks that appear with the bodies of the murdered Champions aren't given enough attention and while I suspect this will be elaborated on in the next book the lack of detail is frustrating. I kept reading the book because the actual story is quite intriguing and I was content to ignore the stupid romance sub-plot that really shadows everything else far too much. As the book draws to an end things start looking hopeful, revelations abound and I'm hoping that in the next book Celaena will actually start to behave like the strong powerful fighter she's meant to be.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I tried......., 22 Jun 2014
By 
Fiona Massey "jellyfi1" (Northampton, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
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I read the blurb on this book, and thought hey that sounds good, ordered it, and after several attempts at getting into it, and starting again, I've sadly thrown in the towel and given up.
I normally love fantasy and sci fi novels, this however, falls real short for me, it's like wading through treacle, it never gets anywhere, I got to page 102.......and that was enough for me sadly.
has the makings to be a brilliant book.....sadly it's got the wrong author to carry it off.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A series that promises much and delivers!!, 26 Aug 2013
By 
Ghostgrey51 (Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
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There's not much else to add to the well-deserved reception of this book. So this is purely just me adding my own small voice of approval because I want to.
I actually started on this series back-to-front having read the follow up volume Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass) and enjoyed so much made getting Throne of Glass essential.
No disappointment! Celaena Sardothien is a tough and independent minded young woman set on a collision course with one very unpleasant empire. All the right ingredients are here; thoroughly nasty villains and their accomplices, firm but fair stalwarts, troubled young nobles and a plot with lots of questions lurking all moving along on a swift but clear narrative.
This seems to be classed as YA, I'm new to genre (60+ y'know) but am gaining a great deal of respect for it; and this is a fine example, certainly more nature and balanced than several `adult' offerings I've stumbled upon of late.
I recommend this if you like adventure, or fantasy; it's entertaining, intelligent and a good, clear read.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Utterly ridiculous, 3 Sep 2012
By 
C. C. Chivers "ccchivers" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
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I read 11 chapters and finally had to give up. Celaena Sardothien is supposed to be an 18 year old hardened criminal. An assassin of such great reputation that people tremble at her name. She is supposed to have just spent a full year in the toughest prison in which most criminals only last a maximum of one month.

However, from the very start she is portrayed more like a superficial spoilt brat from court as she continuously worries about her appearance - her dirty face as she is presented to the Prince of the realm, the type of dress she should wear when being presented to the king prior to a deadly tournament that will decide her entire fate.

She nearly faints when going through one part of the palace made entirely of glass.

She trembles before the very king who is supposed to be such a tyrant that she wants to kill him, especially as he put her in the very mines from which she has just come. One would normally expect burning hate, but instead she behaves like a school girl being presented at court for the first time.

She is vein, wanting everyone around her to know who she is and think of her in some grandiose manner when in fact, a true assassin would welcome anonimity as a way of increasing their chance of accomplishing their goals. She has a somewhat uncontrolled temper like a petulent teenager rather than a street smart girl.

Vanity, fear, petulance - is this really what you would expect from a supposedly hardened criminal? Hardly!

All of these various displays of a normal child (rather than an experienced criminal) are interspersed with moments when the assassin side of her are expressed such as it being potentially easy to disarm the guards below her window and kill them before they really knew what was going on. These 'assassin moments' are completely opposite to her other personality that one would think she was almost a Jekyl and Hyde character. It is ridiculous and I most certainly do not recommend this book at all.

The story itself has great potential (therefore the two stars as opposed to just one) and flows well, but the characters are so superficial in their outlook of life as to make the whole thing a great disappointment.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable, but could be better.., 23 April 2013
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This review is from: Throne of Glass: 1 (Paperback)
I did enjoy reading this book, and finished it quite quickly, but there is a feeling that it could have been much better.

With the entire premise being about a female assassin, and a tournament to find the new "Kings Champion", I expected chapters full of violence and tension, exciting fight scenes and spectacular deaths.
So I was disappointed when the book turned out to be more of a teen romance than anything else, with the protagonist spending most of her time thinking about love interests and pretty items than the fight that was supposed to be ahead. As it turns out there is hardly even a fight at all, and most of the contestants are eliminated in basic and dull tests like rock climbing and archery.

That's not to say that there's no real storyline, because there is an ongoing plot of murder and evil found throughout, but again it's overshadowed by the romantic and girly elements for the majority of the time. The big revelation about "who and what" was behind the murders, which I feel the author intended to be shocking, was really quite a non-event because to me it had been obvious what was happening from about six chapters beforehand. At times it felt like the intelligence of the reader was being underestimated by the author, as in some places such blatant explanation just wasn't necessary.

The world of Erilea appeared to have potential, but none of it was explored other than in brief memories or anecdotes from other characters.

I also found that once I'd finished I didn't feel emotionally attached to any of the main characters, I simply didn't care what happened to any of them because I had been tired of the love triangle as soon as it was hinted at in the first few chapters. The supporting character of Nehemia, the rebel princess, was much more interesting and I felt that her personality would have been far more fitting for "Celaena, the worlds greatest assassin" than the overly feminine one that the reader is subjected to.

In short, it's not a bad book, but if you're expecting an action/adventure novel in the style of The Lord of the Rings or even The Hunger Games, this really isn't the right one for you.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars So bad I couldn't even finish it, 18 Sep 2012
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I'm a massive fan of young adult/fantasy fiction and Throne of Glass looked like a promising read. As usual I read the reviews but the good far outweighed the bad so I went ahead and bought it. Big mistake.

The writing is stilted, the dialogue is awkward, the characters are annoying... if there was a "Bad Book Checklist", this book would be ticking all the points. The one star I have given this book is for the idea - I still think it sounds like a great book! It just isn't.

I always like it when reviews (especially bad ones) go into a little bit more detail so let's discuss the heroine, Celaena. She's meant to be a highly trained assassin - cunning and brilliant - but I just don't get how that could possibly be true when she's just so stupid. She can't keep her mouth shut, is terrible at reading people and situations and is terrified of the King (who she was apparently on the way to fearlessly assassinate when she got caught). These might be kinda cute features in any number of characters but she's not just meant to be any assassin, she's meant to be the best. Huh, now I'm writing this review it does sound like she would be the perfect bad assassin in some comedy/fantasy and yes, she might be funny if she wasn't just so annoying. I spent the first half of the book screaming at her in my head to be quiet, or get a move on, or listen to what someone was saying and I began the second half of the book in a sort of exhausted, hopeless silence until I realised the book was making me so cross I should probably just stop. So I did.

Read it at your own peril.
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