AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury USA Children’s
DATE PUBLISHED: August 27, 2013
OVERALL RATING: 4 out of 5
SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads): 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.
While my feelings and excitement from Throne of Glass freshly lingered on me, I knew I had to jump right to Crown of Midnight. I’ve interacted with a couple of bloggers about this book, all/ most of them giving wonderful assurance the sequel will be the bomb. And what an explosive it was!
I’ve said this before and I’ll make an effort of emphasizing it once more. Maas has this astounding ability to thread words into sentences that’s easy to get to. I like how she avoids using hackneyed phrases and thus, it wasn’t a mediocre read. In relation to that, I’m glad Maas did no way to show off and use annoying hifalutin words especially since her target readers are juveniles. I’d like to put the experience in the context of plunging into a sea without even bothering to go up the surface for oxygen. I read it in a few sitting.
The complete inconsistency of Throne of Glass with its fantasy theme was compensated by Crown of Midnight (though that definitely doesn’t count as an excuse). It was clearly deeper, more intensified and eminent in most parts. Romance still pops up in every corner however this time, not acting as interference but a total accompaniment.
It was a story filled with massive insurgence. An uprising resides within a bigger uprising. The reason for revolt became more and more despiteful. The elements of rebellion – Archer, Nehemia, Celaena, the Wyrdkeys, the King’s wicked plans, etc. – were effectively used to weave a good theme of mutiny.
Whilst the plot from Throne of Glass picked up in a rather slow manner with several unnecessary scenes, Crown of Midnight took a different path. The development was rapid and extensive. Initially, my attention to the book wasn’t consistent though only by a fleeting moment.
TIP: If at first, it doesn’t get to you, give it a generous chance. COM isn’t one of those books that promises to be better but still end up otherwise. Personally for me, at least.
The intricate twists on this novel surpassed that of TOG tenfolds. Surprises, scandals, and lies burst here and there leaving no time to yawn. Each of their timing was on point.
One thing though. When Chaol and Celaena shared intimacy, all the forces in the universe would inexplicably connive for Dorian to witness the scene and make the poor guy die in resentfulness. Or the other way around. This happened not just once and hence, becoming a foreseeable Koreanovela. Boy, was it a pet peeve! Who else felt it?
The events in TOG had obviously brewed a more ardent relationship on the love triangle. While Celaena’s character had an evident progress, the two boys didn’t. Their utter obsession with the assassin made them nothing but her lovers. Save for Dorian’s new discovery about his capabilities, he would be nothing but a watcher being eaten away by jealousy. Too bad for Chaol who lived solely for Celaena’s happiness with no other purpose than just that.
There’s something quite adorable with our heroine, Celaena. From being the most dreaded, vengeful assasin to a woman of principles and direction, the transition was astounding. Celaena became a vessel of values. However, what got to my nerve is how she unjustly played with her admirers. She drops one guy like a hot potato and grabs another at her pleasing. Bad ass but still despicable.