Throne of Glass by Sarah Mass
I am really late to this series of books, but I am now officially hooked!! And so will you, if you try it.
World-renowned assassin Celaena, who is 18 years-old, is close to death in Endovier, a slave camp where she has been imprisoned. Until Prince Dorian arrives, looking for someone to compete in his father’s competition to discover the next King’s Champion.
Half-starved and weak, there story follows Celaena as she has to successfully battle against the other competitors, while hiding her real identity, and help to unveil the mystery of a series of murders within the castle.
The story is a brilliant blend of fantasy, both magical and historical, and the world feels very medieval England meets Westeros. The characters are complex, both in terms of their needs and their actions, and I felt myself drawn to each of the main characters and while ‘the girl confused over two boys’ love-triangle is a little overused, it didn’t feel cliched here.
“Libraries were full of ideas–perhaps the most dangerous and powerful of all weapons.”
Celaena is a strong lead with a contradiction to her hard exterior in her love of books and romantic emotions, and she is supported well by Prince Dorian, Chaol, the Captain of the Guard who trains her, and Princess Nehemia, whose motives we are unsure about for the entire novel. The story is not short of strong protagonists, either, and many make an impressive impression upon the reader, leaving you feeling like you know nothing and with no clue over who to trust. As a result, it makes for a compelling and deeply engaging novel.
“My name is Celaena Sardothien. But it makes no difference if my name’s Celaena or Lillian or Bitch, because I’d still beat you, no matter what you call me.”
I am yet to read all of the novels in the series, of which there are five, but as a first, this one will draw you in, and while complete as a novel in it’s own right, enough story strands are left open for the sequels.