Book Review: Throne of Glass

Throne of Glass
Published By: Bloomsbury Children's
Publication Date: August 7, 2012
Page Count: 416
Source: Amazon Vine UK
Audience: Young Adult - Fantasy

Oh I do so love a strong heroine! The heroine in this book, Celaena Sardothien, is a particularly kick butt kind of girl... she is the most notorious assassin in all Adarlan, and she is imprisoned in a death camp to be worked until she can work no longer. Bearing that in mind, she jumps at the chance to represent the Crown Prince in a contest to find the most worthy killer to be named the champion of the King. 

Celaena is a blood thirsty young girl of 17. She was taken in by the King of Assassins as a small girl and trained to be the best in the land, and she doesn't miss many opportunities to think about how she can dispatch the witless guards around her. Luckily for them, she is intrigued by the path laid out in front of her, and the feint glimmer of legitimate freedom at the end of it. So she doesn't kill everyone and run off, she hangs around to take part in the contest. 

What I loved the most about Celaena is that she was really very weak at the start of the book, but she didn't give in and show that weakness. Her spirit is undaunted, and she fights to survive with her every step. I also loved reading about her developing camaraderie with the Captain Westfall, the Captain of the Royal Guard. He is a very suspicious man, and he rightly doesn't trust Celaena as far as he could throw her, especially around the Crown Prince, Dorien, who just can't seem to resist her. I found the interaction between these three characters to have just the right balance of trust and mistrust, coy and overt behaviors, and some really zingy dialogue. As you might expect, there is a little bit of a love triangle going on here, and I really enjoyed that element. I found it hard to call how it would work out, but I enjoyed being able to read the thoughts of all the characters.

The contest between the killers made for good reading, but the primary focus for plot development became a murder mystery involving sorcery and spirits. I was less satisfied by that development than the progress of Celaena as I wanted her to play a larger role in solving that problem than just reading tons of books. When she was finally allowed to examine a body, she was fantastic! I can see a rosy future for her in a more empowered role within the Kingdom. 

While I wanted a little more action from this book, given the promise of it being about an assassin, I think that there is more than enough to entertain here, and I look forward to reading more about Celaena. I might start with the 4 prequel novellas that have been released, and I do expect a sequel to Throne of Glass in the future which I would be excited to read!

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.


  1. I have heard nothing but good things about this book. I really must read it soon. I love the thought of a female assassin for some reason. It's too bad it didn't have the action you though, but maybe in the sequel there will be more.

  2. I have since read The Assassin & The Pirate Lord and can also recommend that!

    I do hope we see more of Celaena kicking butt in the sequel, but even if we don't I feel sure it will be well worth reading for the writing and plotting skills of the author.

    Plus she seems like a genuinely lovely girl, so that's a bonus too.

  3. I've had this book on my shelf for awhile now and must get a chance to read it soon. I've heard so many amazing things about it. Thanks for your thoughts and reminding me I need to get it off of my shelf!

  4. This was another one that I enjoyed. I can't wait for the sequel. I hope it answers my numerous questions!

  5. Haven't read it but it seems like a wonderful fantasy from your review:)

    Lovely review:)

  6. I loved this one -- you can't go wrong with a strong heroine. I'm looking forward to the sequel as well!

  7. I loved this one too, Celaena was wonderful :)
    I didn't know about the prequel novellas though- I'll have to check those out immediately. Thanks for the tip!

  8. Sounds like the heroine has to grow and gain confidence through out the book? I enjoy that kind of story, makes me feel like I am fighting along with her. Thanks for the review.

  9. Every blogger, or most of them, have been singing the praises of this book... I really have to start collecting money, I'm a bit pressed for it now. But I'm getting it, somehow. great review.

  10. I was really excited about this one but then I read mixed reviews and wasn't sure if I still wanted to read it. But I love assassin stories so I'm gonna read it anyways. Thanks for the review!

  11. Believe it or not, I read a review which said that the heroine did not assassinate anyone in the story. She was not impressed with this book.


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