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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant.
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...
Published 19 months ago by Beanie Luck Spud

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61 of 65 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 23 months ago by Olive C.


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61 of 65 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 (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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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice story, but nice wasn't good enough!!, 31 Aug 2012
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This review is from: Throne of Glass (Kindle Edition)
Great, a book with a Heroine that had withstood time in the salt mines when others would have broken, a heroine that is a trained assassin, not just any trained assassin but the most infamous trained female assassin. She had swagger, she had attitude, she was the best and she knew it, and yet she lost her first combat to a royal guard, OK the Captain of the Royal Guard but even so! She fell for the oldest trick in the book and drank poison, she quaked in the presence of the King who had caused her people so much harm and refused a chance to escape when it presented itself.

I loved the concept, I enjoyed the writing style, I just thought the character had an over inflated opinion of herself which her actions did not justify. The relationships between the main characters were not developed in an adult way, I am not suggesting anything erotic should have been written, but after months in the gorgeous Princes company, and he being a lady's man, and she being so very attracted to him and he to her, come on, just a kiss? I know it was fictional but there is no need to be condescending, we would have understood! Anyway, a nice book, and a great idea, but a wimp out on exploring the true character of an assassin that had suffered so much to gain so little, Freedom was always within her own hands, not by the grace of her enemies.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant., 9 Dec 2012
By 
Beanie Luck Spud (Cotswolds) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass (Paperback)
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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 exhilirating. 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'm going to start with Celaena. This is one spitfire, kick ass chick. She's gone through a lot. She's suffered, and suffered, and suffered some more. But she's survived and she's still got all this strength to continue on. Even when she's afraid she doesn't allow it to blind her or affect her. She continues on. She says what she thinks and feels although she's smart enough to hold her tongue when she must (like when speaking to the king who could hang her at any moment). I loved Celaena. She is a character that I truly loved completely. No annoying habits, no ridiculous behavior, nothing. There were times when I wish she'd tell someone of these secrets she was figuring out, but I understood why she didn't, why she couldn't, tell anyone. And Celaena might be a trained assassin, but she knows who her friends are and she'll do what it takes to protect them. Even if she knows they should be her enemy.

I also couldn't figure out what era the book was written and I don't recall it ever being stated. In some parts it read like it was old, obviously with kings and queens in the court, and yet in some instances it seems very modern.

I really enjoyed the training sessions between Celaena and Chaol and seeing Celaena physically get fitter and stronger. It was also really nice to see their relationship grow and that I could read more of. Celaena relationship with the Prince was also interesting to read about and as already mentioned, it was great reading every ones point of view.

My only complaint is Celaena made a decision towards the end of the book that I wasn't happy with, but I understood why she did it.

The characters are well-developed, and there's a great element of mystery and danger. I'm very much looking forward to the sequel and seeing where Sarah J. Maas takes her series!
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8 of 9 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 (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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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 (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
2.0 out of 5 stars Poison Study, anyone?, 11 Feb 2014
This review is from: Throne of Glass (Kindle Edition)
Having read probably too many Y.A. fantasy type books I'm obviously a sucker for a story well told - action and romance thrown in - I have to this is is by far the poorest written of any of the books I've read, added to the feeling I was getting a poor woman's version of Posion Study, by Maria V Snyder (a 5 star read if there ever was one). I really REALLY wanted to like it, but after a promising start (hence the 2 stars instead of 1) it quickly becomes a cliche-fest - Ms Maas seems to have written a 'paint-by-numbers' narrative; you get the feeling you've been everywhere, seen everything before, not helped by lashings of heavy-handed description. The main character, Celaena, becomes increasingly aggravating - maybe it's meant to be a cute type of snarkyness - instead of seeing her character develop through her trials and tribulations, we get almost gratuitous riffs on her feistiness, arrogance, vanity etc etc - take your pick. This girl is an ASSASSIN but all we seem to get is how she admires herself in a gown, and loves a party lol.

Ok.....it's a Y.A. novel - I expect the cliches/suspend disbelief - but it reads as a book for 15 year olds, WRITTEN by a 15 year old. The best books, for ANY age-group or genre, are always well-written and engaging. If you want to read a truly cracking Y.A. book, with a kick-ass but sentient lead character, have a look at Maria V. Snyder's Posion Study - Yelena is everything Celaena should be. And it's well written. Go on, you know you want to.
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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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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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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Throne of yawn, 19 Sep 2012
By 
Catriona Reid - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Throne of Glass (Paperback)
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I couldn't finish this book. In fact, I couldn't get more than fifty pages in, primarily because I found the protagonist unbearable. Beautiful, clever, and the youngest and best assassin of all time, she's a quintissential Mary Sue. The explanation for her being hired by the royal family makes absolutely no sense, and feels very much like nothing more than a device to get the story started.

Perhaps it's unfair to give a review, especially a low-starred review, to a book that I've read so little of. The book may well turn out to be so good that it cancels out the huge shortcomings in the main character. That said, if I cannot get into a book to the point where I can't bear to finish it, there are some serious problems in the world- and character-building, which is why I've chosen to review it as I have.
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15 of 18 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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This review is from: Throne of Glass (Kindle Edition)
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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1 of 1 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 (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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