My rating: 4 of 5 stars
So, apparently there will be six books in the series. The third came out earlier this year.
Reading this now was a terrible decision.
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.I absolutely love Caelena. She is not merely An Assassin, but she also likes dresses and lost puppies. While I'd like to know how, and why, she decided to be that way after going to the death camp that is Endovier, she is so endearing. And frankly, I don't know who to ship her with! All of the characters are so fleshed out, even the sneaky Kaltain. Hats off to Sarah Mass!
Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. 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.
Another aspect I adore of this book is the names. They're all pronounceable! In high fantasy, you usually run into names like Bazizkilbmahsamki and Xiqrhigy (say those ten times fast, I dare you).
But here everyone's names were awesome. Chaol, Dorian, Caelena, Kalkain.... Epic.
Doesn't Caelena realize though that as the King's Champion, she would be ordered to kill people? What's to stop the king from ordering her to kill Chaol? Or Arobynn, the one who trained her to be an assassin in the first place? Scratch that, actually. Someone needs to take him out. Caelena was a kid! Arobynn was brutal.
And oh my gosh, the symbolism of the glass castle and the state of the empire...dang. The king may live in a beautiful castle that's stood for years, but one crack could destroy it all.
I got the impression this would be heart wrenching, and while I teared up a little, I was never crying. Beware the hype, I guess. But I've got a feeling that this is the kind of series that builds and builds and builds, and then crashes into tragedy, leaving the readers devastated and more in love than ever. Something to look forward to, I guess, IF I CAN SURVIVE UNTIL THE LAST BOOK COMES OUT IN 2017!
View all my reviews
Adult Content: A