I finished this book days ago and I’ve been sitting here trying to figure out what to say and I keep seeing reviews that are popping up and I get all flaily because I’m like “HOW DO YOU HAVE THE WORDS FOR THIS ALREADY!!”
Book 2 in the Throne of Glass series is … dare I say it… even better than the first, and I loved the first. The writing has gotten tighter, more detailed and I was completely blown away. In Crown of Midnight we pick up with Celaena is the King’s Assassin and he is using her abilities and skills to his fullest advantage, sending her on quests to rid the kingdom of all those who might be in cahoots against him. (yes I said cahoots) We pick up book 2 as Celaena is on one such mission. Her return is dramatic and both Dorian and Chaol struggle to reconcile the girl they know with what she is doing.
“Is it done?”
Celaena reached a gloved hand into the sack and tossed the severed head toward him. No one spoke as it bounced, a vulgar thudding of stiff and rotting flesh on marble. It rolled to a stop at the foot of the dais, milky eyes turned towards the ornate glass chandelier overhead.
Dorian straightened, glancing away from the head. Chaol just stared at her.
“He put up a fight,” Celaena said.
But she’s keeping a secret from them. One that could jeopardize everyone she cares about if it gets out. But the King is up to no good himself of course… only what exactly hasn’t quite been uncovered yet!
So yeah… I’m being incredibly vague about all the things. That’s intentional. I don’t want to ruin anyone’s reading of this book even by accident by spilling too much detail about what is actually going on. There is so much that happens in this installment of the story that I’m afraid anything specific I might say will give too much away. SO – let’s do this a different way –
My top 5 reasons you need to read the Throne of Glass Series … NOW!
1. Chaol – From the beginning of book 1 I have had a crush on the Captain of the Guard and this book has solidified that crush for me. I mean… GAH!!! He’s
“Believe me, Celaena,” he snarled, his eyes flashing, “I know you can look after yourself. But I worry because I care. Gods help me, I know I shouldn’t, but I do. So I will always tell you to be careful, because I will always care what happens.”
She blinked. “Oh,” was all she managed.
But Chaol struggles with his feelings for Celaena. He’s not willing to put himself out there and jeopardize his standing, so he keeps his distance… or he tries anyway.
“Dance with me Celaena,” He said again, his voice rough.
When her eyes found his, she forgot about the cold, and the moon, and the glass palace looming above them. The secret library and the king’s plans and Mort and Elena faded into nothing. She took his hand, and there was only the music and Chaol.
His fingers were warm, even through his gloves. He slid his other hand around her waist as she braced one of hers on his arm. She looked up at him when he began to move – a slow step, then another, and another, easing into the steady rhythm of the waltz.
He stared back at her, neither of them smiling – somehow beyond smiling at that moment. The waltz built, louder, faster, and Chaol steered her into it,never stumbling.
Her breathing turned uneven, but she couldn’t look away from him, couldn’t stop dancing. The moonlight and the garden and the golden glow of the ballroom blurred together, no miles away. “We’ll never be a normal boy and girl, will we?’ she manged to say.
“No,” he breathed, eyes blazing, “we won’t.”
2. Celaena is just as kick-ass as she was in book 1 and yet she’s still a girl at heart! That was one of the reasons I loved her so much in Throne of Glass too. She is so badass … this cold blooded killer, yet she loves clothes, shopping, and when she’s at a ball, she doesn’t want to be part of the security, she wants to dance! I mean the dichotomy of the two people she is, is just so wonderfully done and makes her so unique as a character.
3. Dorian – yes even though he’s NOT my favorite he has a big impact on this story and we learn some pretty amazing things about him… things that he struggles to make sense of and understand. Plus the evolution of his and Celaena’s relationship is done amazingly well. Even though there are things somewhat unresolved between them, they truly are friends and seeing them put any differences they might have aside and hold onto that very important thing was wonderful.
4. The amazing writing – Sarah has crafted an incredible world and story in the Throne of Glass series. I can’t even do it justice by trying to explain it here. BUT Crown of Midnight is even better than Throne of Glass (I know… you’re like ‘how is that possible jaime??’) … I’m not even sure how to explain it other than the writing is tighter and the story is even more engrossing than the first and you get to learn so much more about the magical world and a few big secrets are revealed. The characters jump off the page at you and you can’t help but to feel all the emotions they are.
5. The FEELS – Holy mother of all things, I think Sarah was trying to make me feel EVERYTHING with this one. I found myself laughing, smiling, swooning, crying, throwing things, sighing in happiness, and gasping in shock. Everything that I want and need in a book.
So there you have it… there are a million more reasons you should be reading this series but these are my top five. I know I’m not alone when I tell you that this is a must read when it arrives this summer. This was the one book I wasn’t leaving BEA without… I couldn’t put it down once I started and I know you’ll feel the same once you get reading. Sarah Maas has an incredible series on her hands, and I’m so excited to see where the next book in the series takes us. In the meantime I’ll be over here reading and rereading the first two … join me please!!
Dear Sarah Maas …
Thank you to Bloomsbury for having enough copies at BEA and being so kind as to hand one to me.
5 gazillion stars for this – it was so good I can’t even put words together about it right now.
So, I have done my best not to completely fangirl as well as give anything away here. Continue reading with the idea that I had to completely hold myself back and if you have not started this series yet…what the heck are you waiting for…seriously – go do it now.
I’ve been waiting what feels like forever for this book and boy did Sarah Maas come through. This was the one book I had to leave BEA with and thank the lord I got my hands on a copy. If it would have any influence whatsoever, I would offer up cookies or my first born child for the next book – just putting that out there.
Crown of Midnight picks up with Celaena acting as the King’s Champion. A lot happens in this book and there is also a lot revealed. I’m not going to go into any of it because I don’t want to give it away but if you enjoyed Throne of Glass, you will really like book two. I felt like the pacing was well done and it was the perfect mix of action, mystery, swoon and snarky banter.
Celaena is still one of my favorite characters…ever. She is still arrogant, tough, smart and sarcastic and I love this about her. She also now has people that care about her and that she cares about. Celaena knows she is playing a dangerous game that could end badly (for her, Chaol, and/or Princess Nehemia) but she is willing to take chances and do what she feels is necessary to stand up to the King. There was also a point in the book where it was clear she is good at what she does and seeing it through Chaol’s eyes made it even more impactful.
“She was a whirlwind of steel and blood. As he watched her cut through the men like they were stalks of wheat in a field, he understood how she had gotten so close to touching Endovier’s wall that day. And at last – after all these months – he saw the lethal predator he’d expected to find in the mines. There was nothing human in her eyes, nothing remotely merciful. It froze his heart.”
The love triangle still slightly exists but not in a way that overpowers the rest of the story and not in the way you would normally assume when you hear love triangle. It is key to the progression of the story and allows us to see just how much Chaol and Celaena are fighting their attraction to each other. It also shows us how their interactions are impacting Dorian and his feelings for both Celaena and Chaol.
Chaol – I love him. It is as simple as that. He truly cares for Celaena and he forces her to see things that she normally wouldn’t and that is probably what I loved the most about their friendship/relationship.
“Believe me, Celaena, ” he snarled, his eyes flashing, “I know you can look after yourself. But I worry because I care. Gods help me, I know I shouldn’t, but I do. So I will always tell you to be careful, because I will always care what happens.”
She blinked. “Oh,” was all she managed.
I mean…that alone is enough to make me love him. Add in the 50 other items I tagged in my book and you would probably agree with me.
I loved seeing the evolution of Celaena’s relationship with Dorian. We know from ToG that Celaena has put a stop to any potential relationship with him but Dorian is still trying to get beyond that. Eventually they come to rely on each other for support during some very difficult times where both of them are questioning who they are and their purpose. Celaena’s relationship with Princess Nehemia is just as strong as it was in ToG and she is her first real girl friend. When something happens that really tests Celaena, my heart was truly breaking.
Can I just say – there are so many swoony moments and parts I loved that I thought I was going to run out of sticky tabs to mark them in my book. Once you read this, you will completely agree with me and see why Chaol will be on my favorites list forever.
So there you have it. I don’t think I gave away any secrets here. If you enjoy fantasy and a great story that just happens to include some of my favorite characters EVER, I highly recommend you check this out. Maas does a wonderful job of creating characters you can care about as well as a great story that just sucks you in and keeps you turning the pages until you get to the very end. I was unable to put this down and can’t wait until book three comes out…that’s soon, right??
**This review is based on an ARC.