Throne of Glass
By Sarah J. Maas
Rating: 1/5 stars
Throne of Glass is a fantasy novel about Calaena Sardothien, an assassin who has just spent a year sentenced to working in Salt Mines after being caught. The Crown Prince, Dorian, has had her released on the condition that she will compete in a competition to find the King of Erilea’s next Champion, or assassin. Calaena agrees on the condition that if she wins, after 4 years of service she will be free. As the competitors begin completing tasks and slowly being eliminated, they soon have additional concerns as someone has started to kill competitors outside of the specific tasks. Calaena now has to find a way to survive these attacks while also building her strength to succeed in the tournaments. Also distracting her is a new friendship with the Princess of a neighboring nation that is being threatened by Erilea, as well as the romantic feelings she has for her guard Chaol and the Crown Prince. Trying to overcome all of these factors, Calaena must put other thoughts aside if she hopes for a chance for her freedom in the foreseeable future.
Review: So I will put a disclaimer out right in the beginning of this review stating I might be a little more harsh on this book than normal because of all the hype that is surrounding it. Because Queen of Shadows, the 4th book in this series, came out this month I have been seeing a lot of raves about it and thought I should finally get this series read.
It was almost painful at times trying to get through this book. I think the main problem I had with trying to get into this novel is it is completely inconsistent. Calaena is supposedly the greatest assassin in Erilea, however her characterization and the way other characters in the novel treat her don’t align with this at all. This is supposed to be a character that broke her own wrist when she was still a preteen in order to become a stronger fighter in her less dominant hand, however, throughout the whole novel there were constant complaints about blisters, uncomfortable high heels, having to walk in wet shoes. I found the amount she whined made any of her previous claims and experiences unbelievable. Also the way the male characters treat her also undermine her claim to greatness. Her tendency to become a Damsel in Distress around Chaol, was really at odds with her background and it kept me from being pulled into the story.
I also felt a lot of plot decisions were made because they were necessary for moving the story forward but did not make sense with the setting the author had created. Having guards constantly around the Princess and Calaena for protection, and then having them just randomly be out of sight the one time somebody approaches them and makes a threat just does not make sense.
I have heard that the next novels in this series do get better as they continue, but because of the awful experience I had reading this book, I really have no interest in learning what happens to these characters or seeing how their stories resolve.