Hey, book lovers.
So, rather recently I finished reading the fourth book in the amazing epic fantasy series by Sarah J. Maas called Throne of Glass, and this novel was the journey of Celaena Sardothien, queen and assassin, in a world full of magic, war, destruction and a mixture of all of those things. It’s pretty difficult to explain without spoilers, particularly if you haven’t read the first three books, (go and read them first, then come back!). There is Throne of Glass, its sequel Crown of Midnight, and the third book Heir of Fire, which I have recently posted a review for. You can find that one right here: Heir of Fire Review
In this book, we are introduced to Aelin Galathnyius, not Celaena Sardothien. (Hope I spelled those right! Oops. Damn, these names are long and complicated.) She is now the queen of Terrasen, well, the princess, really, but everyone constantly refers to her as the queen, so yeah, we’ll just go with that. As for most of the first few books, she’s sassy and defiant and won’t take no crap from anyone. She is exactly what I love about feminine, kick-ass characters in young adult novels. Yeah, I said it. She is freaking amazing. Okay, maybe this series excites me a little too much, but there are so many pages and so many chapters and so many words and they all go off into different routes and perspectives and it took me about three weeks to read it, but every time I read it was wonderful. I have work and uni now, and writing my own books and stuff, so please don’t judge me. If you hadn’t already guessed, I’m in love with this series and have been, since the very first book. You can find my other reviews for those on the blog. Probably not as hyper-active in those as I am in this one, ’cause they just seem to get better and better.
Celaena/ Aelin and Chaol’s relationship is dead and gone. She still misses Rowan, as he is back in Wendlyn, and her friendship with him has grown enormously towards the end of the third book. You can still sense in Chaol’s narrative that he still feels for her, that he misses the way things were before, but Aelin knows she is a different person than she was then, and she isn’t afraid to tell him that. I really loved her relationship with both Dorian and Chaol when they were closer, but I also grew to enjoy her narratives between herself and Rowan, who at first had always been quite distant with her. She breaks down his walls, and he breaks down hers. And now, there is Nesryn, another kick-ass female rebel who at first challenges Aelin, then tells her she is working with Chaol, and the two are together once again.
Now, Aelin is back in the world of Arobynn, King of the Assassins, her old master, who rescued her from the water when she disappeared after the murders of her parents. He is quite creepy, to be honest. He treats her as a lover, not a brother or a friend. He acts as if she belongs to him, along with Lysandra, the companion, and she is tied down to her own mistress, but she and Aelin used to be very close. Arobynn knows her as Celaena Sardothien, and he has always done, but she chooses to go along with some of his workings, to a point. She pretends she cares for him the same, and eventually grows fonder of Lysandra, following along with his demands, when Aedion and Rowan end up moving into her old apartment with her, and they all become friends, even despite Rowan and Aedion’s bitter jealousy of one another for their closeness to the princess.
Chaol is bitter over his old love for her. Her cousin Aedion had expected to take the blood oath to protect her, the same one that Rowan had taken in the previous book, and he is bitter over that thought. Rowan is not jealous, but does not particularly enjoy Aedion’s pettiness towards him and the situation. Their territorial, fae attitude is actually rather amusing, and Sarah relates to them as like a pair of hungry dogs. As always, I enjoyed Aelin’s witty comebacks, especially towards them. She’s not without her faults, and is often stubborn, finds it difficult to keep control of her own emotions sometimes. It makes her real, as strong a character as she is.
Aelin still acts on her own, despite the insistences of the two men she has brought into her court. They want her to confide in them, to share her worries, but of course, Aelin is too independent for that. She often sneaks out into the night, and eventually, she starts to trust herself enough to let go a little.
We see Arobynn’s character more, as a power-hungry, controlling individual who only works for himself. I did not like the man one bit. I think the only part I enjoyed of his pieces was when Lysandra finally killed him, with Aelin’s insistences that she take the chance. When he dies, she receives the land, and then forces the assassins already living there to buy it from her, earning Aedion enough money to buy weapons and more soldiers for their fight against the enemy city of Adarlan, before in the end, Aelin and Dorian kill the king together, setting Dorian free from the noose at his neck and the Valg princes controlling him.
Throughout the book, we have seen Dorian trying to fight the forces from within him. It is only when Manon, the witch from previous books, tells him his real name, that he starts to come back into himself again.
Alongside these perspectives, we have seen Manon working with and against herself, following the orders of the duke, being forced to send her witch-clans to his men and to be impregnated with these strange, half-demon, half-witch creatures, which the king aims to use in the war. Manon has become more caring throughout the story, defending a servant girl with witch-blood, and calling her her own, which was not something she had typically intended to do previously.
And, when Manon and Aelin meet, they fight. It is glorious. Aelin is wonderful, and Manon is a witch, strong and immortal, and they almost kill each other, until the world breaks apart beneath them and they are forced to flee, which is when Aelin decides to change her intentions and save the witch from dying. Later, Manon realises her blood oath, and returns the favour by helping them in their fight.
I can’t describe enough how amazing this book actually was. It was definitely my favourite in the series, because there was just so much going on. There are six books in the series, and yes, I cannot wait for the rest.