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.
©2012 Sarah J. Maas (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
"Readers seeking the political intrigue of Kristen Cashore's Graceling and its sequels or the deadly competition at the heart of The Hunger Games will find both in Maas's strong debut novel. . . . The verve and freshness of the narration make for a thrilling read." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)
"A teenage assassin, a rebel princess, menacing gargoyles, supernatural portals and a glass castle prove to be as thrilling as they sound. . . . Celaena is still just a teenager trying to forge her way, giving the story timelessness. This commingling of comedy, brutality and fantasy evokes a rich alternate universe with a spitfire young woman as its brightest star." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas is a tale full of surprises and shadows, where deadly seeds are sown with the promise of more danger to come. A fascinating glimpse into the dark side of Cinderella." (Colleen Houck, NYT Bestselling author of the Tiger’s Curse series)
The story is awesome! I would have given the overall rating 5 stars had it been narrated by someone (anyone) else!
Why did the narrator choose to make the main character sound so nasally, smug, and annoying? I gave the performance 1 star but that is only because giving negative stars was not an option! I don't often give negative reviews but I truly disliked everything about the narration!
So you've been put into a death camp prison mine at age 17. No one survives this death camp prison. You were there for 2 years. And you're the world's most powerful assassin; the queen of the underworld. And you've seen your people bled to death and you're full of rage and the milk of revenge.
So of course, when you're freed, the first thing you're going to do is become a total airhead and totally like fall in love with two guys because OMG one is like a total Prince, but the other one is like soooo loyal and stalwart. And of course, you will totally eat lots of amazing chocolates that will be listed out individually, because chocolate is like sooo delicious, right?
Don't get me wrong. I've been known to enjoy some full on romance fantasy adventures. I've read and enjoyed Sharon Shinn's Twelve Houses series, and one of those books, the one with Justin and the Lirren girl with the starry hair? That shit was as cheesy and romantic as it gets.
I've even read the first of 4521 trilogies in Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel Cycle. So don't think that I'm all EWWW, because of the elements of romance that this novel trots out. I'm not all EWWW, I'm all PLEEEEEEZE, because it just doesn't make any sense How are you going to be the world's most powerful assassin and the queen of the underworld and be a total napkin as well?
Anyway. That's what you get.
I've noticed trends in a lot of the YA scifi books that I've read, particularly those with a strong female lead, and this one followed all of them. It has the usual love story/triangle, and the usual rise from the lower class, and a strong female protagonist - which to be clear, I always enjoy, AND, this book still managed to give you a plot line to love, even though you've kind of heard it all before.
This is a great YA series, which I'm officially hooked on, and can't wait to listen to the next one!
I admit it wasn't my first impulse to read this book. The cover seemed to turn me away but I had been recommended by a few people and a book reviewer YouTuber so I got the audio book.
The narrating took some getting use to for some reason I wasn't found of how she had to make her voice to create the tones for the men but after a few chapters I adapted.
I LOVED THIS BOOK. I haven't been so invoked by a book or character in a while. It's like hunger games, divergent, Harry Potter, lord of the rings, and game of thrones all mushed together.
I tried to tell myself I would wait until my next credit but only made it a half hour after purchasing the second book. I've also never loved an audio book so much in the year I have had my account that I have taken the time to write such a descriptive review.
Just read it. You'll love it.
Maybe an angst-ridden pre-teen would find all the drama and whining more acceptable.
Although all the characters constantly sounded arrogant and bratty, I don't think the narrator can be held solely responsible; the author's writing is just as much to blame.
All of them! The "world's best assassin" "wrings her hands in worry" and lets people sneak up on her on a regular basis. She spent her career carefully hiding her identity, yet now constantly whines that no one respects her or takes her seriously because they don't know who she is. The "spoiled prince" is an arrogant womanizing jerk, who refuses to marry because every woman he's ever met is "mentally inferior". Listening to them is like listening to a bunch of immature 12-year-old spoiled rotten brats.
Save the credit!!
I have never felt compelled to write a review before, but I want to save you from a mistake. This book has a splash on the cover that says "Fans of Game of Thrones and Hunger Games will love this!" I think George R.R. Martin is a genius and his books have cost me numerous nights of sleep. And who doesn't love Katniss? So if this book had a strong sassy no bs female lead in a world similar to GOT this could be worth a read? No.The lead character can wield a weapon, though the fight specifics are often lacking. "She knocked him out." "She hit the target dead center." Her emotional development is young. She's vain and annoying. Maybe she will grow up as the series plays out, but I won't be along for the ride to find out.Though Katniss and Celaena would be fighting on the same side I think Katniss would be doing a lot of eye rolling in having to deal with Celaena. The male characters are a bit more interesting. If you are a hard core GOT fan you will be bored silly. This book has nowhere the depth, plot nor characters to hold your attention. Hunger Games is a more fair comparison and while some of the story is similar (strong female lead out to thwart an unfair society) the comparisons end there.I probably would have liked this book when I was in high school. If you are a grown up look elsewhere...
PS I would not have bothered to write this review had the publisher not tried to hoodwink GOT and HG fans...
I have 3 kids that occupy all the TV's in the house...enough said...addicted to audiobook ....shhhh don't tell my husband ;-)
The fiercest assassin in all the land turns out to be an 18 year old Girl. A kings tournament of thieves & assassins temporarily wins Celaena Sardothien her freedom from the salt mines to compete. The tournament champion wins their freedom and becomes the king's personal assassin for 4 years with a handsome salary, but there is dark magic effecting all of the land and an uprising is eminent. Celaena seems to be the key to fighting the dark magic and possible over throw the King. The only reason I didn't give all 5 stars is because there were slow spots in the book, but the second book seems to have more action in it so I'm going to stick with the series.
Amber and Izzy
This book was highly recommended by a friend, when it was first published. I prefer listening to books, so I was disappointed when I discovered that it wasn't available at Audible, so I ended up reading it. I was so excited to see it available on Audible. The performance by Elizabeth Evans brought a lot more excitement and fun to the book! I enjoyed it very much and am starting the second book!!
I am not a fan of romance, and in this book, it is secondary to the plot. I love the "kick-ass" Caleana charater! She is witty and smart too!
This book is a good YA fantasy, and works for adults in the same way as The Hunger Games. I am a big fan of The Dresden Files, Jane Yellowrock, Mercy Thompson, Kate Daniels, and I enjoyed this book!!
By night I'm in a lab, by day I'm ... usually still in a lab.... Thank God for audiobooks!
I made it to the final two hours of this audiobook during a car trip before I snapped and "skimmed" through the ending. In hindsight, I wish I had listened to reviewer Fil, who accurately describes Celaena as a sap. I honestly can't think of anyone to recommend this book to.
Part of the problem lies in the author's attempt to combine several genres: an action-packed, bloody mystery-adventure-fantasy novel with a solid dose of romantic sexual tension sounds like a great read, doesn't it? And it might have been, had Maas developed any of these ideas thoroughly. Instead, she briefly attempts to develop the "assassin" backstory only moments before plunging into the "romantic" aspect or the thrilling adventure, etc. in a way that is scattered and bizarre. Her prose is uninspired and long-winded. Her characters have illogical reactions considering their roles in life and the story. (Example: a Captain of the Guard for the bloodiest, most ruthless ruler in the known world that stares in guilty horror at his hands after slaying a criminal that was about to murder the woman he's secretly in love with. Yeeeeeeeeah, riiiiiiight …… <--- *Disgusted disbelief.*)
On top of this illogical character development and sloppy writing, Celaena just sucks as a person. She's bratty and egotistical without any backstory or inner monologues to flesh her out. Why is Celaena so famous? Who has she assassinated? Why is she so feared? What makes her think she's better than everyone else? What's her damage? Has she ever had a meaningful conversation with anyone ... ever?
Don't expect answers to these questions by the end of this glacially paced book. This is a shallow story about a girl that is miraculously gifted in all physical skills, a point that is driven home in the way that she bounces back to full health after a year-long stay in a cozy death camp--her world's equivalence to Auschwitz. I'm sorry, but how many Jewish survivors did you hear about that were running in the Olympics only a few weeks after their release? Maas CAN'T have ever trained for any physical competition in her life because she seems to think a few mentions of Celaena puking after a long run are sufficient to give credence to her recovery in about a dozen combat and survival skills. After only a couple of weeks, she can scuttle up smooth, flat walls like a gecko, overpower men three times her body weight, and shoot the hairs off a fly's back from three football fields away (with a bow and arrow)! Her beauty, wit, and charm enchant all and her gallant, noble actions earn her the respect of everyone she meets--save the black-hearted King and his evil pawns! (I think the author also forgot to mention that she poops solid gold and walks on water, too. Maybe she's waiting to reveal that in book 2.)
Authors of old pulp fiction/dime novels like Anthony Hope (Prisoner of Zenda) or Edgar Rice Burroughs (Tarzan, John Carter) could have pulled off such ridiculously gifted characters in an absurd, rip-roaring adventure. Maas does not have this talent. The story is slow and takes thirty minutes to describe a chess or billiards game between Celaena and the Prince, which they play while they discuss … absolutely nothing. I've felt more sexual tension between my grandmother and a cashier at the local pharmacy where she buys hemorrhoid cream. The author spends more time describing the clothing in the scenes than any perceived or observed emotions/reactions/facial expressions. The prince and the Captain are as interesting as cardboard cut-outs, and the "mysterious" killer of the competitors takes all of one second for the listener to identify.
All in all, this really was just an absurd, boring story with terrible world-building and an even more terrible plot. Save your money/credit/time, and skip it!
Very good book. Never had a dull moment. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a solid story, good narration and a little bit of adventure and romantic drama. This book would be good for adults and teens.
"Most Definitely Not Game of Thrones"
Not in this series. The underlying premise is interesting - female assassin, training camp for bad guys, unknown mission - but the world building is very limited and the main character is highly unconvincing. This is my main problem with the audiobook and in the end the reason I could not finish the book. A hardened female assassin who has killed 20+ guards trying to escape from the prison mine, undergone a brutal training regime with a master criminal with many assassinations under her belt essentially acts like a naive teenager in almost all the situations she is faced with. There are so many inconsistencies between the "super assassin" premise and how she actually behaves it becomes impossible for the story to hold any credibility. Comparisons to GoT or the Name of the Wind are utterly misplaced. The narration is good, but cannot redeem the story.
I tried reading the book several time and just didnt seem to get into it, but listening to the book was for me so much better, the narrator did a great job.
I recommend this for an enjoyable listen :)
A captivating listen, if you enjoy game of thrones, name of the wind you will thoroughly enjoy this
"Amazing book! Hard to put down!"
Great listen! Very action filled and quick paced, at the same time descriptive and emotional. Has everything you would ever need inside a book - crime, action, romance, drama, fantasy, historical feeling - all included!
Reminds me in some way of Game of Thrones (I loved the series, haven't read the book).
Interesting storytelling - from a perspective of a character ("I" form). It is interesting because, though the main character remains Celaena, author gives you insight from the other characters point of view, too, in that way quenching your thirst for information about their feelings.
Great narrator! I think she fits very well.
"I loved reading the book and enjoyed the audiobook"
Awesome, exciting, interesting.
Final fight scene between Celeana and Cane.
A badass heroine with a will of steel.
I thought the narrator's was a bit annoying.
It's not terrible, but it's incredibly predictable and very pithy. I guess this is what Vampire fiction fans feel like about the Twilight Saga.
I listened to the end, and I admit that I didn't feel like I needed to stop, listening because it was so bad. But it was advertised as being like Game of Thrones and it's really not.
The main character is petulant and at times irritating, and the "love triangle" is a little formulaic, it's not so much a will they won't they, as an of course they will.
I've been trying to find more books about assassins and this book felt nice :) though not my favourite book about assasons I would recommend it to everyone :) can't wait to go through other books in series
"Simple and slow"
No, I persevered with the book but the characters were simple and the story predictable. Its aimed more at a teenage audience.
dull and predictble.
the narration was ok but to be fair she didn't have a lot to work with
I haven't joying reading long time how I joyed reading this book. Truly amazing book
"Unfortunate narration for a good story"
I have previously read the books and decided to listen to them before the coming out of the latest part. The first book is very different in all aspects from the following ones. It's a general set up to get us introduced to the main characters and some of the back stories. I have enjoyed the book enough to continue with the series and I am glad I did.
Unfortunately, the narration is completely ruining the book. Not only do all characters seem arrogant and self-rightious (unlike in the book), the text switches points of view and it would appear that the narrator managed to not notice it. It is very unnerving, especially considering all other Sara J Maas books in this series are also narrated by her.
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