Sunday, July 22, 2012

Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (Throne of Glass #1)

Overall Impression: 

Source: Publisher through Netgalley

Publication Date: Aug 7th 2012

Short Synopsis (Goodreads): 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 kings 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.

My Review: *sigh* I have not been this aggravated by a book in a long, long time. I think what made it so hard for me was that I had such high hopes for this (did you read the synopsis? I LOVE assassin stories, and an assassin story about a girl and princes and evil kings? Sign me up!) The execution of the story, however, had me rolling my eyes continually!

I'm not going to go into too much detail here, since I respect the effort authors put in to writing their stories and also because I am obviously in the minority with my opinion of this book. Lots of people with similar tastes to mine have thoroughly enjoyed this, so maybe it's just me.

To start off on a positive note, what I did like about this book was that it was quite atmospheric for a YA. Not often do you come across a YA story with such an evolved background.

That being said, if you are at all used to reading high fantasy, this book is not going to have much depth for you. I wouldn't say I'm a high-fantasy fanatic, but reading Throne of Glass I felt that it could have gone so much deeper since I could feel the information lurking under the surface but it just never went into that much in to detail.

Probably the most aggravating thing of the whole book for me would have to be the characters. Before even reading Throne of Glass I started with the novellas and was introduced to Celaena there and really enjoyed getting to know her in The Assassin and the Desert...but then some stuff happens in The Assassin and the Underworld that had me screaming in frustration. I thought things would improve with the actual book, but that would be a negative.

I guess it comes down to characters making realistic choices. Sometimes you get so drawn into a book it feels as if you are actually there. Almost every action of the characters in Throne of Glass, however, felt excruciatingly forced. It felt as if there was someone behind the scenes with an idea of what they wanted to happen and was forcing the characters to go against their nature. There was so much that just didn't make sense!! I was fighting actions and reactions every step of the way because it just didn't feel natural and did not flow. 

I'm fine with not liking a character and the choices that they make, but they need to make sense!

I'm all for romantic tension and having two guys vying for your attention, but their actions need to make sense!

I'm fine for having the worlds greatest assassin be a 16 year girl, but her actions need to make sense!

*sigh* I'll end it here because it would just be specific gripes that I would go in to. Even though I was frustrated I thought that after finishing this book that I would still want to read the rest of the series, but honestly, I don't think I can handle it. 

Still, you should give the book a try. You might want to read the novella the Assassin and the Underworld first, though, and if what happens in that makes perfect sense to you, you'll really enjoy this book. If instead the only thing preventing you from throwing it across the room in frustration is the fact that you are reading it on your iPod, I'd invest your reading time somewhere else cause there's a lot of the same feelings, times about 10, in the actual novel.

1 comment:

  1. I only hear good things about this book so it's very refreshing to hear a negative review. Too bad this book made little sense for you, but I'm still excited to read it. I hope this makes more sense to me. :)


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