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Crown of Midnight

5 stars
388,940 (51%)
4 stars
258,454 (34%)
3 stars
83,416 (11%)
2 stars
13,867 (1%)
1 star
4,905 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 54,862 reviews
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,990 reviews298k followers
May 17, 2015

Shit seriously just went down. Oh wow, where do I start with this sequel? I wasn't even sure I was going to read it when I recently finished Throne of Glass and found it entertaining but a poor excuse for fantasy. You want to know what Crown of Midnight felt like? It was like the author listened to every piece of criticism I could have thrown at the first book, listened to everything I loved and everything that irritated me... and then wrote a perfect kind of book. The kind I wanted the first one to be; the kind I hadn't dared to hope she might produce in this sequel. There was more action, more nastiness, more character development, more surprises, more complications, more sexy, no love triangle - all of this and a well-placed, never-saw-it-coming twist. Ms Maas, consider me impressed.

Crown of Midnight takes a huge step away from the tame romantic/bitchy drama of its predecessor and opens up a story that is a bigger, bloodier and meaner than I think many readers will be expecting. Celaena gets to fully explore all aspects of what it means to be an assassin in this book; she is tested constantly and you can see her growing and changing and learning as the story progresses. And this story is one tumultuous journey of extremely high ups and unbelievably low downs with Celaena taking relationships to all new levels and watching others fall apart. Old enemies resurface and we start to get a glimpse of just how big the picture Maas is painting for us actually is.

One of the strengths of this book is having no idea how it's going to end. You might think that's a given, but Throne of Glass introduced us to a plot that was fairly easy to see mapped out. We are told of the challenges Celaena must compete in and win, we know that's what the book is moving towards, and it isn't too much of a leap to assume that (one way or another) Celaena is going to emerge victorious. Not in this book. This book starts with a blank slate, any mysteries or troubles that are to come are completely unknown to us - so every turn the plot takes is a surprise and every surprise is thrilling. I can't wrap my head around just how much better this sequel is. Maas has already grown as a writer and storyteller, making me wonder what she can possibly have in store for us next.

The characters are also so much better developed in this book. Maas is brave enough here to allow the main characters to make mistakes, do the wrong things and test our ability to like them. Well, I don't know about you, but the new dimensions to their personalities, their faults and weaknesses, only served to make me like them more. Dorian surprised me most of all. In Throne of Glass, Dorian feels like something of a plot tool, a pretty little obstacle to Celaena and Chaol's romance. The scenes with him felt like filler between the parts I was actually waiting for. But not in Crown of Midnight! In this, Dorian emerges as an interesting character with secrets of his own; he makes sacrifices for the people he loves and his importance to the bigger story starts to become apparent.

In short?

Throne of Glass...
Romance, love triangle, pretty dresses, one-dimensional characters, little action...

Crown of Midnight...
Badassery, twists, nastiness, betrayal, more action, magic, secrets...

If you were so-so about the first one and considering *maybe* reading this, you have my thumbs up.
Profile Image for  Teodora .
329 reviews1,777 followers
March 21, 2023
5/5 ⭐

Full review on my Blog: The Dacian She-Wolf 🐺

Chaol Westfall, a well-trained, muscular grown-ass man, Captain of the Royal Guard: *gets all soft and smooshy in this book*

me: *needs to wrap him in a blanket, feed him some good hot Romanian rice pudding with lemon and sour cherry jam and protect him from the rest of the world because he is that precious*
- Actual plans that I really think about considering in a very serious way

After reading the first book of the series, Throne of Glass , I knew that I enjoy Crown of Midnight , but I’d never anticipated I’d enjoy it that much.

I've decided to read this book in a teeny-tiny complicated period of my life: I've been categorized by my ophthalmologist (cuz yeah, I wear glasses and not one but two pairs, one of them being for reading, cuz yeah, my blind arse doesn't see well enough) as a "are case" and my eyes are „smashed" because of too much reading and it's not normal. Sooo I've been put through an "a carrot a day" cure and also "only 30 minutes of reading" cure. Because of that, I was not able to actually read as much as I wanted. But this book is giving to me a dependence that I am totally approving of, made me read so super-humanly fast that I've managed to actually read enough in a day to accumulate the plot, the characters' stories and the magic happening in general in Sarah J. Maas’ world.

This book was better than the first book from the beginning. I think it is so much easier to get into the second book of the series because you have the advantage of the first one. In some series, the second, third, fourth etc. books are not as good as the first one. But in this series, you can actually sense them getting better and better (or maybe this is only my opinion). So second book of the Throne of Glass series > the first book (but don’t get me wrong, I loved the first book too).

It is useless to talk about the plot at this point already: it’s the second book, some covered plans are being made in order to wipe the fussy king from the surface of this world. Talks about rebel alliances and plans and talks about some long-lost heir of Terrasen’s throne, Aelin Ashryver Galathynius start pumping the air of the book. Some think they are just rumours; some believe in them because their lives depend on these rumours. But until the end of the book, everything becomes just a huge ball of energy that absorbs everything (including your soul) and in my opinion, this is so important.

Sarah J. Maas is, in my opinion, a genius mind. She makes us fall in love, she makes us sigh, get angry, cry, wanna die and so on. All these elements are important spices in the whole dish of a book. I don’t know about other people, every single person has a personal taste, but I really think that this whole series is based on a brilliant idea, also very good narrated, even though I’ve read only two books.

Now, talking about spice, even though I am actually kind of a bit (more) in love with Dorian, the Crown Prince of Adarlan, and I think he is the most charming and witty son of a wicked king I’ve encountered (since present moment) in any of my reads (remember that I am fairly new to YA Fantasy club) and I love his beautiful soul and the way he and Celaena work together, I cannot not be happy to see how the relationship between Celaena and Chaol Westfall, Captain on the Guard, grew. At least in this particular book, at this given moment. Even though some batshit happens and Celaena goes cuckoo bird.

Going back, this book, the second book out of seven, blew my mind, made me laugh, made me sigh, made me cry, made me mad. And it was fantastic. Totally worth every single second I’ve spent reading it. I loved it.

Also, Nehemia Ytger, thank you for existing, Queen!

Profile Image for Jesse (JesseTheReader).
468 reviews176k followers
May 2, 2015
Wow! This was an exceptional sequel. I loved it so much! I feel like the series has more of a direction, which is exciting. I'm still processing everything that happened in this book, because SO MUCH HAPPENS. I'll be doing a full review/discussion soooooon.
Profile Image for Caz (littlebookowl).
302 reviews40.2k followers
October 18, 2015
I'm not sure what to do right now.

I just.... wow.

The only reason this isn't rated higher is because the first half was quite slow in pace and I wasn't as invested, but the second half SURE DID REMEDY THAT. Help me?
Profile Image for Miranda Reads.
1,589 reviews157k followers
June 3, 2021
Celaena may be many things but she is not a murderer.

She is an assassin.

There's a difference. (Probably.)
He had no idea what sort of darkness lurked inside her, or what sort of monster she was willing to become in order to make things right.
I honestly don't even know where to start with this one. It was so good and I'm just absolutely reeling from that ending. Because. Wow. Sarah J. Maas just delivered on this sequel.
"Enough! We have enough enemies as it is! There are worse things out there to face!"

Celaena slowly turned to him, her face splattered with blood and eyes blazing bright. "No, there aren't," she said. "Because I'm here now."
Celaena Sardothien ex-prisoner of the salt mines has risen to the position of Royal Assassin. She must follow every whim of her king for four years. Only then, will she finally be freed.

It was a hard bargain but Celaena thought she could handle it. She's killed many, many before - so how could killing for the King be any different?

The Mad (or merely cruel?) King sees spies and traitors everywhere. He frequently sends her out to murder innocents. To murder - not to assassinate - and that makes all the difference.

Very quickly Celaena finds ways to smuggle out these would-be-victims, but with the ever-rising number of "survivors" (any one of them could blow her cover), the ever-increasing threat from home and the reappearance of an old friend - how could she even hope to protect those who matter to her most?

I absolutely love how our main character is confident, beautiful and completely in control - it's such a refreshing change from all the awkward, please-tell-me-I'm-pretty and helpless heroines that populate many YA books.
If they wanted Adarlan's Assassin, they'd get her.
And Wyrd help them when she arrived.
The side-characters are so well-done. There's a bit of a love-triangle. Normally, I'd run away screaming at the hint of a love triangle (I've suffered through so many terrible ones) but Sarah J. Maas executed it perfectly. (Is there anything that the Maas-ter can't do?)

Plus, that ending just sucked out my last breath.It was such a twist and it was so incredibly badass. I loved it.
Death was her curse and her gift, and death had been her good friend these long, long years.
If you haven't picked up this series yet - get it today. Seriously. Go. Now.

YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads
Profile Image for Andreea Pop.
321 reviews2,230 followers
August 26, 2013

Holy mother of all Gods! I'm starstruck. This is what I'd like to call a gorgeous sequel. Dare I say it, it might even top Throne of Glass!

Celaena Sardothien is doing her job as King's Champion, meaning she's killing people that stepped on the king's toes. And now she's got a new target: Archer Finn, former crush and friend from the time when she was within the Assassin’s Guild. Turns out, she's not killing her targets, but faking their deaths, so she's in a lot of danger if someone discovers her secret. The stakes are higher now that Archer is a well-known figure in Rifthold and that he might be involved in a rebel group. To make events even more complicated, the half-Fae and long-dead Queen, Elena, is asking Celaena to find the source behind the King's power.

“Everything in this world is magic. Thank you ever so kindly for stating the obvious.”

Celaena was a goddamn badass. I wouldn't mess with her in a thousand years. We finally see her wild and deadly side, the one that I've grown accustomed to in the prequel e-novellas and that wasn't fully explored in Throne of Glass. Sure, she's still that sassy, arrogant and sarcastic girl, but above all, she's an assassin. A ruthless killer. And when the ones she loves are in danger or threatened, she's unforgiving. That part of her really gives you goosebumps. Oh, and let's not forget when she's in for revenge. One word: lethal.

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.

Dorian Havilliard. Chaol Westfall. Dorian, Chaol, Chaol, Dorian. Chaol is the same sweet, loyal, funny, protective and fierce warrior. I loved his easy banter with Celaena and his alpha-male demeanor. Prince Dorian Havilliard is still the same passionate, kind, intelligent young man that is slowly transforming into a great ruler. And they’re best friends! How can I choose?! *crying*

“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.”

In Crown of Midnight, Chaol and Celaena are getting close. Like really close. And because of that, both of their relationships with Dorian become more strained, awkward and tense. And that's kind of the single thing that bothered me at Celaena: in Throne of Glass, she was all over Dorian... and now? She doesn't care about his feelings when he clearly loves her. And that just got me going mad. I wanted to hug Dorian several times and give him cookies.

Still, things evolve a little bit between them on a platonic level when a heartbreaking twist makes Celaena not trust Chaol anymore. And another unexpected twist involving Dorian makes things one hundred times more interesting.

“When you do, I want you to remember that it wouldn’t have made any difference to me. It’s never made any difference to me when it came to you. I’d still pick you. I’ll always pick you.”

I've read some reviews that say that the love triangle's fate is sealed after the first quarter of the book. But now, after reading it, I'm not so sure. Especially after that second half and killer ending. I love Chaol with all my heart, but I can't help but hope that Celaena will end up with Dorian. Now, now, don't throw stones at me! It’s still a Cinderella inspired book! They're both swoony guys, but I've always loved Dorian a bit more. Might be because of the dark-haired, blue-eyed appearance. And possibly the arrogance. And the bookish and funny personality. Perhaps even the fact that he's a freaking prince. *dreamy sigh*

“If you are captured, if you are hurt, you are beyond our reach. You will be entirely on your own.”
“I’ll be fine.”
“But I won’t be. Every day that you’re there, I will wonder what has become of you. I won’t.... I won’t forget you. Not for one hour.”

Nehemia was such a great support for Celaena, even if she had her own agenda. The princess is one of those selfless characters that would give everything up for the sake of her people. She's fair, ambitious and dedicated. And she's the key-player that sets things in motion in this sequel. But in a gut-wrenching method that will surely have you shedding a few tears.

The villain we love to hate: the King of Adarlan, Dorian's father. His plans turn out to be down-right evil and unnatural. I loathe that guy because he's so willing to exploit everyone around him for his own sake. I want him D.E.A.D. *guilty smile*

As it was to be expected, we meet new characters. My favorite was Mort. Why? First of all, he's an ancient talking door knocker. Second of all, he's hilarious!

When they left, Nehemia spent a few minutes studying Mort— mostly asking him questions about his creation spell, which he claimed to have forgotten, then claimed was too private, then claimed she had no business hearing.

Archer Finn was hard to read, but I never trusted him behind all those pretty smiles and coward-like behavior. Never trust a courtesan. Oh, and of course, there's Baba Yellowlegs. Even the name gives you creeps. She's an old, manipulative witch whose favorite meal is consisted of young girls. Told you: creepy.

The character development is really spectacular. You can see how Celaena, Chaol and Dorian grow. By the end of the novel, our heroine is not running from her past anymore; the Captain of the Guard is ready to sacrifice himself and face his father; and the Crown Prince starts to stand up to the King no matter the consequences.

“Thank you for all that you have done for me, Dorian. Thank you for being my friend. For not being like the others.”

The pace was definitely action driven. I'm not kidding when I'm saying that sooo much happened and some many plots started to unfold between my eyes. Crown of Midnight was a page-turner through and through and there was never a dull moment.

“How long will you keep her here?” Dorian said, looking down the stairs.
She had attacked the Captain of the Guard in front of his men. Worse than attacked.
“As long as it takes,” Chaol said quietly.
"For what?”
“For her to decide not to kill us all.”

Another think that surprised me was the fact that Celaena is keeping so many secrets I can't even keep count. There were two revelations regarding her: I suspected the one revealed in the end, but the other one totally caught me unprepared. Both are jaw-dropping twists that will completely change the outcome of her adventures.

“I’ll come back,” she said quietly. “I’ll come back for you.”

The world-building was exquisite! We learn so much more about Erilea, Adarlan and the history of the country. We delve deeper into the Fae magic. It's a top-notch high fantasy world, coupled with a darker atmosphere, mistery, magic and amazing characters. The result is a certain recipe for epicness, one that Sarah J. Mass gorgeously created with her mad writing skills.

If you haven't started this series, I'm begging you -- pick it up ASAP. It's complex, emotional and completely captivating. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll swoon, you'll gasp in shock and you'll fall in love with the story. Crown of Midnight was an excellent follow-up that might not end in a claw-your-yes-out sort of cliffhanger, but it will make you crave the next installment like air. And man, what a ride that will be! *wink*


You can also read this review here: http://raftul-cartilor-vampiresti.blo...


I NEED THIS BOOK!!! How can I wait another year?? It's killing me!!!!

Profile Image for Regan.
457 reviews110k followers
June 9, 2023

Also, I appreciate the fact that this is not going to be a trilogy, we need more fantasy SERIES in the young adult genre.

And Chaol <3
Profile Image for NickReads.
461 reviews1,196 followers
November 6, 2019

You can find the full review and more about this book on my blog!


“But death was her curse and her gift, and death had been her good friend these long, long years.”




Don't get me started on the cover,because you all know how much I appreciate these beauties.This series has everything on it's perfection,starting from the covers to the story and the characters,and everything.Simply perfection.


“Who said anything about shame?" She gestured down to her naked body, even though it was covered by the blanket. "Honestly, I'm surprised you're not strutting about, boasting to everyone. I certainly would be if I'd tumbled me.
"Does your love for yourself know no bounds?"
"Absolutely none.”


Throne of Glass was a 5 star book for me,but comparing to this one,I don't know,this stands out in every single way.This is probably the best book I have read so far this year.I knew I will freaking love it from the first page.The story is more developed,the characters are too,and there's a moment where everything changes.That mind blowing moment that you should read to understand it,to live it.

“What does that mean?" he demanded.
She smiled sadly. "You'll figure it out. And when you do..." She shook her head, knowing she shouldn't say it, but doing it anyway. "When you do, I want you to remember that it wouldn't have made any difference to me. It's never made any difference to me when it came to you. I’d still pick you. I’ll always pick you.”


The story follow Celaena,now officially the king's champion,doing his dirty work.The king sends her to kill people but she fakes every death.This trick becomes harder day by day,because she puts in risk the people she loves,her friends,her freedom and her being.She is torn between two protectors,Chaol and Dorian,who fight for her in different ways.But there comes a darker force,which Celaena has to fight,because it is her destiny,even if you wants or not.

“Why are you crying?"
"Because," she whispered, her voice shaking, "you remind me of what the world ought to be. What the world can be.”


If you remember my review of Throne of Glass,you would know that I did not loved Celaena,especially at the beginning,but gosh,she is now of my favorite characters I have ever read about.She is strong,and loyal and beautiful and has that weird sense of humor,that I truly dig,what can I say,I am in love:)

“The rest of the world quieted into nothing. In that moment, after ten long years, Celaena looked at Chaol and realised she was home.”


My favorite part was when Archer kidnapped Chaol and Celaena went to save him.That entry in the warehouse was phenomenal and so bad ass.

“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.”


I highly recommend this book if you have read Throne of Glass already.If you haven't then go check it out first and come to this one,because this book is perfection,like literally perfection.

*Pictures from the review are not mine, I took them mostly from Google images or Tumblr*
Profile Image for Warda.
1,207 reviews19.7k followers
April 29, 2022
6th reread.

Will I ever stop?

That’s a no.


The ending. The ending. The ending. And the buildup to that ending? Absolute game-changer.
My heart was beating! It brought me right back to the first time I read this series and felt my obsession with it and Sarah J Maas brewing! I latched on to it. And I have fallen in love alllll over again! 😍

There’s so much that I just felt!
Celaena’s character development in this, to her finally beginning to accept and deal with her past, to stop trying to escape what it is she is meant to be, was incredible to read.
And it hit me again how much she actually has suffered, from the time she was 8 till now. The people that she has lost, the sacrifices she has made to try and keep her soul intact and completely close herself off to the torture she experienced. It was so painful to read.

I’m so not ready and ready for Heir of Fire. Pure pain and excruciating growth resides in that book.
Profile Image for Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥.
547 reviews34.7k followers
March 1, 2018
“Some things you hear with your ears. Others, you hear with your heart.”

To say Sarah J. Maas stepped up her game in the second book of her “Throne of Glass Series” most certainly would be the understatement of the century. No, scratch that, it actually doesn’t even get close to the truth. XD

I swear in comparison to the first book this truly was an action packed and suspenseful read! =)
Alone the many awesome fight scenes and the countless revelations throughout the entire book were already enough to cause my head to spin! Plus Celaena finally lives up to her reputation as Adarlan’s best assassin and actually kills people, which was amazing and involuntarily made me love this even more! *lol*

Yes, Sarah can write and her action scenes always had me at the edge of my seat. Once or twice I might have even been close to falling off of my chair, but that’s another matter for another day! ;-P
For now all you have to know is that ”Crown of Midnight” was an awesome read and that it was able to keep me on my toes and considering how many books I already read, this certainly should speak for itself. ;-)

Since I don’t really feel like talking about the plot (you’ll read plenty of it in my characters section aka The Spoilery Spoiler Section anyway) I’ll do something completely mean and will only give you a few words:
Celaena, Chaol, Dorian, The King, Roland, Kaltain, Nehemia, Archer, missions, blood, death, creepy, magic, dungeons, books and let’s not forget about Fleetfoot!

There you go! *lol* Haha! Oh Jeez that’s so vague you’ll hate me! XD

Well, anyway! *smiles innocently*
Let’s get to my favourite section!

The characters:

Do I still have to say it?! Yes? Okay! This is the aforementioned “Spoilery Spoiler Part” so if you don’t want to read quotes or spoilers or my crazy thoughts, you better stop now and never return. ;-P Don’t say I didn’t warn you!


”Some days, it feels like another person did those things. And most of those lives I’m glad I ended. No matter the cause, though, it – it still takes away a little piece of you each time. So I don’t think I’ll ever forget them.”

Celaena is so kick-ass, I love her!!! We finally saw the relentless killer in her and I just couldn’t get enough of it! I thoroughly enjoyed all of the fighting scenes and the one with Baba Yellowlegs was definitely the best! XD I can’t wait to read more about those Ironteeth Witch Clans and I really hope they’ll be a part of the other books! Aside from the action I probably enjoyed Celaena’s character development the most. She’s no longer afraid to show her true self and she doesn’t only open up to Chaol but also to Dorian. I can’t say how much I loved all those new revelations about her and the fact that she’s fae took me entirely by surprise. I definitely didn’t expect that and I was like “WOAH WHAT?!!!” when I read it! I mean I always knew she had a secret and Sarah mentioned it often enough, I certainly didn’t expect it to be this kind of secret though!! *lol* I’m sure after the promise at Nehemia’s grave we can expect great things in the future and I’m so curious about Wendlyn; I immediately want to start with “Heir of Fire”.

”I failed him,” she said. “In every way that counted, I failed him.”
Another long silence, then a sigh. “Not in one way.” Chaol said. “I bet he would have wanted you to survive – to live. So you didn’t fail him, not in that regard.”

”I want you to know,” she whispered to the wind, to the earth, to the body far beneath her, “that you were right. You were right. I am a coward. And I have been running for so long that I’ve forgotten what it is to stand and fight.”

”The ship began moving. And Chaol – the man she hated and loved so much that she could hardly think around him – just stood there, watching her go.”


”She was a whirlwind of steel and blood. As he watched her cut through the men as though 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.”

Ahh Chaol! My problem child! *sighs* I don’t hate him, actually I like him, but ARGH!!!! He screwed up big time in this one and I just couldn’t believe what I read! I mean come on! You’re the Captain of the King’s Guard! You should be smarter than that!!! Seriously, in this book I really began to hate his loyalty to the king and it made me more than just angry that he never even thought about questioning the king’s orders! Chaol basically is the embodiment of the unthinking and unblinking soldier! Stupidly loyal to a fault!!! And that moment when he got kidnapped in his own domain? WHAT THE FREAKEDY FREAKING HELL?! Like: Are you kidding me!? I can’t help but wonder how he even became the Captain of the Guard. *lol* I’m so not impressed. Not at all! Plus he should have told Celaena about Nehemia, but he didn’t and that once again tells me that he still doesn’t trust her. At the end I felt kind of sad for him though. I mean he finally realised that he was blind and probably made the biggest mistake of his life. Unfortunately by then it was already too late to change anything about his misguided actions and he ended up suffering like crazy. Poor Chaol! =(

”Once, Chaol might have argued. Once, he might have protested that his loyalty to the crown was his greatest asset. But that blind loyalty and obedience had started his descent.
And it had destroyed everything.

”But when Celaena walked out, leaving that damning will behind him, he didn’t even make it to his own room. He barely made it into an empty broom closet before the sobs hit.”

”But he could do this for her. Even if he never saw her again, even if she abandoned her duties as King’s Champion and stayed with the Fae in Wendlyn forever – as long as he knew that she was safe, that no one could hurt her … He’d sell his soul again and again for that.”


”You have power in you, Prince. More power than you realize.” She touched his chest, tracing a symbol there, too, and some of the court ladies gasped. But Nehemia’s eyes were locked on his. “It sleeps,” she whispered, tapping his heart. “In here. When the time comes, when it awakens, do not be afraid.” She removed her hand and gave him a sad smile. “When it is time, I will help you.”

My charming and precious cutiepie!!! I love Dorian so damn much! He’s the best thing about the entire series and in “Crown of Midnight” he broke my heart. I suffered with him throughout the entire book and I really hate the idea that Sarah might make him a second Lucien. Neither of those two boys deserved what she put them through and I really hope she won’t continue to harm him in the next book. He’s just too pure for the world and he needs to be protected at all costs!!! Plus he’s amazing!!!

I love the fact that he has raw magic in him and I see so much potential for the next few books! Still, his loneliness caused my heart to ache and I felt really sorry for him. He’s so alone and no one is there to help him, yet his first thought when he discovered that he had magic was that he needs to find out if his brother has it too. He wanted to protect Hollin and that’s so damn sweet! <33 Oh boy, how much I wanted to hug him when he frantically tried to hide his research in the library or when he was looking for Nehemia and waited in front of Celaena’s rooms. All this anger and despair - He doesn’t deserve it!!! Sarah, please have mercy on him!!!
#TeamDorian forever and for always!!!!

”How long have you been yearning for him? Was what he really wanted to ask. Damn him for caring. Damn him for every moment he’d spent with her.”

”How about you spend a year in Calaculla, and when you’re done, you two can sit here and tell me about your plans for expansion.”

”Something invisible slammed into the creature, sending it flying into the wall with a crunch. Gods. Dorian didn’t just have magic – he had raw magic. The rarest, and deadliest, kind. Sheer undiluted power, capable of being shaped into whatever form the wielder desired.”


”I won’t deny that you have suffered, Elentiya, but there are thousands more who have also suffered – and suffered more. And they do not sell themselves to the king to get what they, too, deserve. With each person you kill, I am finding fever and fewer excuses for remaining your friend.”

WHY SARAH!!!?? Why did you have to kill Nehemia? She was such a lovely character and I didn’t expect her death! When Celaena found out about the King’s intentions I really thought that she’d be able to safe her or would at least come just in time to exchange some final words with her. But no! We found a dead Nehemia and Celaena never got a chance to fix things between them. T_T I hate it that they had an argument before she died and I really don’t like the way Nehemia had to die. I mean she didn’t even get a fighting scene. We’re presented with a fait accompli, which sucked! Well, at least in my opinion. So there’s that! Can’t say I feel sorry for Grave or Archer though. They had it coming and they should have known better than to mess with Celaena. *lol*

”I have grown up knowing the weight of my crown. When the king invaded Eyllwe all those years ago, I knew that I would someday have to make choices that would haunt me.” She cupped her forehead in a palm. “I didn’t think it would be this hard. I cannot be in two places at once.”

”Nehemia was gone. That vibrant, fierce, loving soul; the princess who had been called the Light of Eyllwe; the woman who had been a beacon of hope – just like that, as if she were no more than a wisp of candlelight, she was gone.”

”But no matter what I did, Elentiya, I want you to know that in the darkness of the past ten years, you were one of the bright lights for me. Do not let that light go out.”

Kaltain and Roland:

”Sometimes,” Kaltain said softly, and Celaena paused. “Sometimes I think they brought me here. Not to marry Perrington, but for another purpose. They want to use me.”

I still don’t know what the king plans with Kaltain and Roland but whatever it is, it can’t be good! That thing in the dungeons underneath the clock tower was so creepy and I really don’t even want to know what else is locked up there! *shudders* There’s no doubt the King of Adarlan is up to something and I’m kind of worried about Kaltain’s fate. I have no idea where and how Roland comes into play, but I get the slight feeling he’s allied with the king. I mean yeah he helped Dorian but maybe that was all show? Who knows? I’ll definitely watch those two closely from now on. ;-)

"They encourage the crows to fly past here," Kaltain murmured, more to herself than to Celaena. "And my headaches are worse every day. Worse and worse, and full of all those flapping wings."

The friendships & ships:

Celaena & Dorian:

”She deserved a loyal, brave knight who saw her for what she was and did not fear her. And he deserved someone who would look at him like that, even if the love wouldn’t be the same, even if the girl wouldn’t be her.
So Dorian closed his eyes, and took another long breath. And when he opened his eyes, he let her go.”

Those two!!! I know they had troubles at the beginning but the friendship that formed between them is so perfect!!! I’m so happy that they were able to settle their differences and I love Dorian for letting her go! This was such a powerful scene and I’m so glad they eventually managed to become friends again! I loved it when Dorian told Celaena that she will always have a place with him and that she could come to his dorms whenever she needed something. THAT is friendship!!! THAT is trust!!! Oh gosh, I really hope Sarah won’t crush this again! *lol*

”Their eyes met and held. A line stretched taut between them – a moment of trust, and a promise of answers from both of them.”

”But looking at Dorian as he smiled at her, this prince who was smart and thoughtful and kind, who inspired good men like Chaol to serve him …
Celaena wondered if Nehemia’s impossible, desperate dream of that court might yet come to pass.”

”Thank you for all that you have done for me, Dorian. Thank you for being my friend. For not being like the others.” He paused, turning to face her. She kept her chin high, but her eyes were gleaming.
“I’ll come back,” she said quietly. “I’ll come back for you.”

Dorian & Chaol:

Dorian’s lips were pursed, his face stony as he quietly said, “I’ve been busy, too.” The Crown Prince turned his horse away, heading in another direction, but paused. “Chaol,” he said, looking over his shoulder. Dorian’s eyes were frozen, his jaw clenched. “Treat her well.”

*sigh* Their friendship suffered so much in this book and I really wish this wouldn’t have happened. I loved that they were so close and could talk about everything, but I guess now that Celaena got into their way things between them might never be the same again. >_< It’s sad that Dorian can’t tell Chaol about his powers but I definitely understand why he’s so cautious. I mean Chaol was always so damn loyal to the king and that actually makes it more than just hard to trust him. If I’d be in Dorian’s situation, I wouldn’t tell him as well. =(

”Dorian could have gleefully killed Chaol’s father for disowning him, refusing even to see Chaol when he brought his family to Rifthold for an important meeting with the king. Even though Chaol had never said it, Dorian knew the scars went deep.”

Celaena & Chaol:

”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.”

I can’t believe Sarah used 1 ½ books to build this relationship and then decided to thoroughly sink the ship! Oh wait! I actually CAN believe it! *LOL* After reading ACOTAR nothing should surprise me anymore! Still, I mean I never was the biggest fan of this ship (everyone who read my review of ToG knows that) but I at least would have wanted them to be happy for a while. And the way it happened!!

I can understand that Celaena was angry at Chaol but I really didn’t get why she acted the way she did. I mean at first she’s all in love with Chaol and jumps to his rescue because he’s been kidnapped and all she wants is to save him because she loves him oh so much and then in the next moment she’s at his throat and almost kills him! Hell! She didn’t even give him a chance to explain himself! Yes, I’m aware this would have changed nothing about Nehemia’s death, but I think if she would have let him talk, she’d have realised that he didn’t know about the king’s plans. She wronged poor Chaol so much and even though he made bad decisions I still feel sorry for him. Because let’s face it, he might have never trusted Celaena but he certainly loved her deeply. T_T
What a shipwreck!!! RIP!

”She knew his every move and he knew hers, as though they’d been dancing this waltz together all their lives. Faster, never faltering, never breaking her stare.
The rest of the world quieted into nothing. In that moment, after ten long years, Celaena looked at Chaol and realized she was home.”

”It had snuck up on him, this pain and terror and rage at the thought of anyone else with her. Every look, every word from her … He didn’t even know when it had started.”

”But he didn’t know how to get her in line. He didn’t know how to fix what had been broken. Both inside her, and between them.”

All told I really loved “Crown of Midnight” and I can’t wait to dive into “Heir of Fire.” Since this was another buddy read with my precious Gem I actually enjoyed the experience even more! XD I loved our discussions about the plot and characters and the fact Gem is such a hardcore Chaol fan only added fire to the fuel to the fun. *lol*

Let’s pick up book 3 soon!!! I promise I won’t talk bad about Chaol! Well, I’ll try not to! Scout’s honor! ;-P
Profile Image for Khurram.
1,663 reviews6,660 followers
September 14, 2023
This is how you write a fantasy novel. Great characters, development, evolution, and revelations. Magic used intelligently, and my personal favourite action. I could not put the book down. I like the way that they characters have their responsibilities and jobs, but that is not all that defines them. Celaena has no problem hacking up body parts, but she is still a girl who loves to shop. I think even though she is an assassin, she sees herself as more of an avenger. She will avenge her friends no matter the cost.

The story Celaena Sardothien won the right to become the King's Champion (personal Assassin) since then, she has been charged with dispatching a number of his enemies. In many cases, she brings back trophies in the form of severed heads and family insignias (rings) still attached to the hands. However, having no love for the King she has been, she has been helping his enemies get away and fake their deaths. The problem is she is too good at it, and even her closest friends and biggest supporters believe she has completely turned over to the dark side. Then she is given a target who intersected with her former life in Assassins Keep (Archer), a courtesan (prostitute). This simple assignment sends a ripple effect affecting Celaena and everyone she cares about. They also fill in some history; there is a more detailed account of what Celaena did the day she "snapped" in Endovier. There are also hints that Celaena knows exactly who betrayed her. In the next book I am begging for a showdown with the King of Assassins, but so far Celaena has already made enough enemies to keep her busy for a good long time, which is great news for a long series. The only thing I did find annoying in this book is the right characters suddenly appearing exactly the right moment, but will all the fate and prophecies in the book, this could be easily explained.

I am a fan of Sarah's writing style, having chapters of different lengths, and almost chunking the chapters so information is easy to take in and break up for me. This might be a fairy tale setting but that is where the similarities stop, this is more the grim story tales type of book, with grizzly deaths, torcher, and harsh language (even though the characters do not swear in print, they usually "unleash a string of curse"). I love the Throne of Glass universe. There are references made to not only the first novel but the eBook prequels as well.

This book is a lot more action packed to the first novel, there HUGE revelations about Celaena and Dorian, (who have a Luke and Leia type relationship), as well as the forces that are using them. It's a great book. Start it, and you will not be able to put it down. You do not need to have read the previous stories to enjoy this one, but they do help, and after reading this one, you will want to go back and read the others.
Profile Image for jessica.
2,555 reviews35.5k followers
April 4, 2020
upon reread, ive decided to bump up my rating. knowing how the story plays out over the span of 7 books, its allowed me to view this with a different perspective. when i first read this, i didnt like how much page-time is focused on boring history, but now i can really appreciate all of the top-notch foreshadowing thats going on.

everything else in my original review still applies.


firstly, wow! i think this might be better than the first book! and i actually really liked 'throne of glass,' so thats saying something!

secondly, i saw a status update the other day where someone expressed their frustration with how women in novels, specifically YA, are too often portrayed as fierce and dangerous. while i agree that kindness and gentleness should also be represented, i have to say that i live for my ruthless and downright deadly ladies.

for me, reading about celaena, about an assassin, is insight into a world i would never experience in a million years. i dont have a violent bone in my body. i actually think my body is programmed with a ‘flight and flight’ response. so i love being able to experience what its like for someone to have so much conviction that she would literally kill for what she believed in. that is the beauty of books, my friends.

so give me a merciless assassin any day of the week. you go, girl! see ya in book #3!

4.5 stars
Profile Image for mara • (chaotic reader).
87 reviews186 followers
September 5, 2015
4.5 stars
Hear ye, hear ye all who seek adventure, ass-kicking and romance come forth! The second installment doth not disappoint! Our heroine is back as the King's Champion so expect action galore. Hear ye, hear ye . . .

Her lovely dresses and ornate clothes were gone, replaced with an unforgiving, close-cut black tunic and pants. Her hair pulled back in a long braid that fell into the folds of that dark cloak she was always wearing. She was a beautiful wrath …

This book turned up in my room dressed in dark robes, whispered the first few sentences like a secret incantation and before I could utter 'By the Wyrd' I was under its spell (not saying that this book has magical powers, but this book has magical powers . . . in fact I'm pretty sure Sarah J. Maas is Fae). It swept me down a path of ink and words, and every time I thought it had given me its all, 'surely it can't get better than this . . . surely,' it would open its robes to unveil yet more wondrous things.

Then it took a boot to my love for female assassins and pushed hard and now I'm sitting at the bottom of a canyon singing to myself:

O' hither she came ,
and stole my heart,
henceforth I shall never be the same, 
your jewels to her you will part, 
or so is the King's claim, 
a jewelley thief? O' she played it smart,
she is of much greater fame,
your body she will cart,
this deadly daggered dame,
your name you will never part,
before she takes her aim.

(You're writing it love poetry? Really Mara, REALLY?)

I've already made my adoration towards Celaena quite clear so I'd like to take a moment to appreciate our two leading men: Chaol (still firmly Team Shirtless Chaol) and Dorian (and I wouldn't mind seeing him shirtless too).

Chaol, Chaol, wherefore art thou Chaol? I am, as we speak, arranging to become a fictional character so I can stalk meet you.


The Captain of the Guard is as strong and fierce as he was in ToG but in this installment we get to see more of his softer side. The beautiful friendship between Celaena and him takes front stage in CoM. Sarah really takes the opportunity to flesh out their relationship in all it's banter-teasing-tension glory. There's talk of books (sigh) and late nights spent next to the fireplace.

While Chaol's compassion and loyalty are beacons of light in the darkness of the Royal Court, the question is where exactly do his loyalties lie? With the Crown he has fought so hard to protect? Or with his friends who have made the glass castle a home for him?

"Why are you crying?"
"Because," she whispered, her voice shaking, "you remind me of how the world ought to be. What the world can be."

Then there is Dorian our charming prince. But again Sarah sucker punches stereotypes and leaves them panting for breath on the floor. Dorian isn't your garden variety indestructible, white horse riding, fierce, saves-the-day prince. Instead he can be fragile and confused and he is made all the more strong for it. Shocking isn't it that boys can experience the same emotions as female heroines (cough)? Sarah doesn't kick him to the curb either. Rather another layer of mystery is added when strange things start happening to him . . . things that put his life at risk.

The most refreshing aspect of this trio's relationship is that Celaena is not turned into a Mary Sue mess in the face of these male "interests." Four for you Sarah J. Maas.


I am not at all done with these characters and I'm ready for their next adventure. CoM had it all: magic, adventure, epic fights, romance, mystery and secrets . . . so many dirty little secrets that aren't as neatly tucked into the nooks and crannies of the Royal Court as their owners would like to think. The ending left me as hungry for more as when I started. This series is going to go wondrous places in the next instalment and I can barely wait.


PRE-REVIEW: 30/09/2012:

2013?! No no no no no. Why are you so far away?! 2013 is finally here!

I just can't. Okay? I need me some more Dorian and Chaol. Pweeeeaaaaase?

Be strong my shipper heart. Dear lord wilt thou not grant patience to my poor shipper heart?!
Team shirtless Chaol.

Profile Image for Natalie Monroe.
595 reviews3,586 followers
August 26, 2016
2.5 stars

Answer me something. How can this—

"She tipped her head back and gave the moon a wicked smile. She'd been called Adarlan's assassin for a reason. Dramatic entrances were practically her art form."

—and this—

"Curled on the couch beside Chaol, Calaena took a sip of her tea and frowned. "Can't you hire a servant like Philippa, so we can have someone bring us treats?"

—possibly be the same person?

I teetered between liking and hating Calaena while reading. Mostly hating. I can handle the shoes and shopping because a girl has the right to look damn good while disemboweling enemies. (Fun fact: Calaena finally acts like a real assassin in this installment)

But leaving her post to dance?

I'm going to say it one more time to let it sink in. The world's greatest assassin left. Her. Fucking. Post. To. Dance.

It's such a transparent attempt to squeeze in a moonlit waltz between Chaol and Calaena, I want to laugh.

I'm Team Dorian, by the way. Just putting that out there. Chaol is an overprotective fucknuckle who can suck it.

Calaena still does stupid crap, like exploring without backup or sufficient research. Her obsession with chocolate cake is goddamn annoying. It's too cutesy and feels like Maas's trying too hard. Each time it came up, I felt like paraphrasing Amy from Gone Girl: No one fucking likes chocolate cake that much.

Midway, as I was finally warming up to Calaena, she turns into an uber Mary Sue.

I originally warmed up to Calaena because of Maas's excellent portrayal of loss and depression. It's not resolved in a chapter or two; it's an underlining theme that affects the latter half of the book. I especially like that

I also liked Dorian's subplot. It's one of the few things in Crown of Midnight that made me sit up, and partially why I think he'd be good with Calaena: ice and fire.

He's a way better love interest and friend. I don't care if it's planet-aligning true love, you don't sneak around with your best friend's ex-girlfriend. *cough*Chaol*cough* I especially like the part where Dorian sees them dancing and chooses to let her go. It was a sweet, poignant moment. And put me firmly on his side, even though I'm destined to lose.

Ah, well.

A Court of Thorns and Roses is amazing and I will definitely check out anything else Maas writes, but this series is a disappointing mess.

My review of Throne of Glass
My review of Heir of Fire
My review of Queen of Shadows
Profile Image for Josu Diamond.
Author 8 books33.2k followers
November 8, 2021
Esto es una maravilla.

Hacía mucho tiempo que un libro no me "llenaba" de esta forma. El estilo de Sarah J Maas no es el más complejo del mundo, pero tampoco es una lectura sencilla y ligera. Sin embargo, consigue que me trague hasta el más mínimo punto para descubrir cada detalle (exceptuando cómo se viste Celaena, que me da un poco igual). La manera en la que Maas consigue sumergirte en la historia es espectacular, incluso con personajes que te puedan caer mal. Simplemente estás enganchado y quieres saber más y más.


Vamos viendo en esta segunda parte de la serie Trono de Cristal cómo realmente hemos estado un poco engañadxs. A ver, yo sabía que había más... cosas, pero la forma en la que la historia va evolucionando está muy bien hecha. Sí, comenzamos con una esclava/asesina profesional y su propia venganza para el rey que acabó con la vida de tantos inocentes. Y sí, ella es despiadada y tiene un plan, y sabe sabotear al monarca. Pero tenemos siempre como ruido de fondo la magia, la extinción de esta, las Marcas de Wyrd, tierras lejanas que amenazan con rebelarse... Y ese ruido de fondo poco a poco va ganando fuerza. ¿Esto es una historia sobre las clases sociales en un mundo de alta fantasía o... es otra cosa? En Corona de medianoche veremos cómo las tornas cambian, y que el tema simplista de ser asesina se va entremezclando con otras cosas mucho más interesantes, profundas y mágicas. Es una muy buena transición, aunque sé que vendrán cosas más increíbles.

Esta saga tiene algo que engancha mucho, y es que la protagonista nada entre dos aguas. A veces, no son tan claras, pero en otras ocasiones sí. Dorian. Chaol. Son dos caras de la misma moneda, ¿o no? Yo como lector no dejaba de preguntarme qué pasaba por sus cabezas, y aunque a veces tenemos una breve mirada hacia ellas, me siguen pareciendo enigmáticos y misteriosos. Y honestamente, es difícil decidirse. No me cae mal ninguno de ellos (incluso hablando de traiciones, como en este libro), porque siento que son personajes demasiado atados a sus actuales condiciones de vida, actuando lo mejor que pueden dentro de un marco opresivo que les ahoga. ¿Cuál es la decisión correcta en un mundo corrupto de por sí? Me gusta muchísimo cómo se plantean sus conflictos morales y personales para con Celaena o el reino de Adarlan.


Como ya he comentado, el estilo de Sarah es cautivador. Engancha muchísimo, pese a no ser una lectura sencilla. Ni las palabras, ni la forma de narrar son algo propio de una novela pensada para ser adictiva y ya está. Tiene un componente muy literario, de profundidad, de lentitud, pero nunca deja de contar cosas. Todo lo que narra sirve para algo, incluso la mínima tontería que menciona de refilón. La forma en la que el misterio es planteado en torno a Elena, su Ojo y las Marcas de Wyrd me ha dejado con el culo torcido. Es un constante "creo que va a ir por aquí", pero termina yendo en la dirección opuesta, y luego te sorprende aún más, y sigues descubriendo más y más cosas que no te esperas. Honestamente, unas cartas muy bien jugadas.

No entiendo, por cierto, el odio que algunas personas le tienen a Celaena Sardothien. ¡NO LO ENTIENDO! Me parece uno de los personajes más complejos de la literatura juvenil actual. Y es que no solo es compleja, sino bien construida, y además -que es lo más importante- no es buena. Tiene su parte mala, vengativa, llena de malicia. Que lo use para lo que tú consideres el bien o el mal es otra cosa, pero sus decisiones se basan en, sí, por qué no, momentos calientes o llenos de rabia. Y no hay nada malo en ello: es una maldita asesina. Me parece que tiene una personalidad clara y perfectamente dibujada. Es inteligente y llena de poder para engañar, que es un soplo de aire fresco entre tanto personaje heroico o 'bueno'.

Corona de medianoche nos habla más y mejor de la historia de este universo. En Trono de Cristal teníamos una buena introducción a ello, pero aquí, descubriendo más sobre el pasado y la magia que habitaba este continente, observamos que hay mucho más que contar y descubrir. Que si el Reino de las Brujas, el circo con Piernas Amarillas, los dioses antiguos, llaves mágicas... Es como que vamos viendo poco a poco un poquito más, y ese poquito expande muchísimo el universo planteado en el primer libro. Lo que más me fascina de todo, es que cuadra y encaja perfectamente con lo contado desde el primer momento. Todo tiene el más absoluto sentido, y se nota hacia dónde irá a parar la autora. No puedo estar más emocionado.


Para mí ha sido una de las mejores lecturas del año, y aunque he tenido malos momentos con este libro (yeah, un paroncito lector o pasajes que me aburrían hasta comprender por qué eran necesarios), sin duda lo guardaré con muy buen recuerdo por haberme arrancado esa ilusión de mi yo lector de doce años con libros de fantasía. Necesito más, quiero más. Así que seguiré ya mismo con Heredera de fuego para saciar mi sed. Dios, demasiadas cosas van a pasar... y no sé si estoy preparado.
Profile Image for Chelsea Humphrey.
1,480 reviews79k followers
February 19, 2023
Only time will tell if my reread will solidify my place on the Chaol train *toot toot*
Profile Image for Ben Alderson.
Author 21 books13.5k followers
August 14, 2016

I DID NOT SEE THAT COMING, well actually some of it, like C heritage I saw coming.


CHAOL, CHOAL HOW EVER YOU SPELL IT. I am not sure i like him anymore!
Profile Image for Tharindu Dissanayake.
288 reviews558 followers
June 29, 2021
"I was expecting more doom and gloom."

This is the book that made me hopeful about this series. I have to confess, even with the popular opinion being the series getting better with each book, I had my doubts. I couldn't imagine the author breaking away from her original portrayer of Celaena considerably. So, though she was more or less the same, it came as a pleasant surprise, to see she is now sharing the story with two other POVs. Though the Crown of Midnight was not a huge improvement, this is certainly a step in right direction.

"Some of the things you hear with your ears. Others, you hear with your heart."

Aside from having multiple POVs, there isn't a whole lot different about this book: writing style, world building, characters, are nearly identical to the first, and moves along the same plot. And the first half did make me think this second book was not improved at all compared to the first. But then, right around the halfway point, an incident completely changed things, which led to a highly eventful, and entertaining second half. All the characters went through some dramatic changes after this point, and finally brought down some of Celaena's conflicting (and annoying) character traits. I also appreciate the use of multiple POVs. I know this would probably change in future, but in this second book, I think Dorian was my favorite character. But after how the author changes the characters' actions spontaneously(like Chaol's), I wouldn't be surprised to see that change in future books.

"You'd be surprised how easily men see what they want to see."

The underlying plot of the story is still not clear, even by the end of this second book. But considering there are seven book in this series, I guess it would be this way, at least until the fourth or fifth book. Hopefully, the plotlines would be streamlined soon enough, so that the final books will not have a lot of loose ends. Overall, I liked the second book more than the first, and for me, it earned a complete star (from 2.5-stars to 3.5), and I'm hoping to see the growth consistent.

"You must learn to ask the right questions before you can receive right answers."
Profile Image for SK.
310 reviews2,730 followers
August 31, 2022
I smiled. I laughed. I cried. I screamed. That's how good it was. That's how deeply it made me feel.

The first half of the book was slower and more lighthearted. The second half was more action paced and heartbreak. I preferred the second half, it was so hard to put down. The twists and turns were chef's kiss.

The characters are so so amazing. Chaol and Celaena made me feel everything. Also why the fade to black?! 😩😩😩
Dorian is a precious bean. I swear if something happens to him in the series, I'm gonna lose it.
Nehemia broke my heart. Then obviously Chaol and Celaena too 😭😭

The ending tho- it was perfect. I loved the cliffhanger, can't wait to read the next book in the series.
February 18, 2021

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Edit: I am bumping this up to a three because it is the best book in the series.

I don't think I've read a book that was so mystifyingly over-hyped since FIFTY SHADES OF GREY. Every time one of these books comes out, my feed is immediately saturated with them for weeks. I realize that in reading these books, I am contributing to the problem, but I never said I wasn't a hypocrite. (Actually I probably did, but then again, how very hypocritical of me.) I read the first book about three years ago, and did not like it, but morbid curiosity inspired me to do a brutally honest reread of THRONES OF GLASS. The feedback was surprisingly positive (although I did lose a friend or two along the way, and even had some people block me). No hard feelings, though. You know what they say - those in glass castles shouldn't cast stones. Or something.


CROWN OF MIDNIGHT is book two in the chronicles of Celiac. I mean, Cellophane. I mean, Celery. Yes, let's stick with Celery. It's much easier to say than Celeana. In the last book, Celery partook in a Hunger Games-like competition to be the King's Champion for the hit new reality series in Adarlan, "Keeping Up with the Sardothiens." Everyone watched, agog, as a tiny, skinny girl inexplicably kicked the butts of men twice her size and strength, including me. It's almost like she hadn't been malnourished and imprisoned for years. Muscle atrophy, like smelly farts, bad hair days, and actually having to work at stuff, is something that just doesn't happen to Celery, Queen of the Mary Sues.

Unlike the rest of us pathetic mortals. *eye roll*

In this book, Celery is the King's Champion, and the obviously corrupt king is having her kill his dissenters. Only sucks for him, because Celery is totes Scarlet Pimperneling him, faking their deaths and mercifully allowing them to escape instead while bringing back the severed heads of scavenged corpses. (It's almost like she isn't good at her job as an assassin or something.) ((Also, girl, what's up with the weird severed head fetish? It's like my girl Celery thinks that they're Pokemon cards and she's gotta trade and collect 'em all.)) At the same time, she's trying to decipher the secrets of the Wyrdmarks, with the help of Nehemia, AKA Queen Bae.

Nehemia was the best thing about book one and also the best thing about book two, and she and Celery had way more chemistry than Celery did with either Kale (because he's overrated, like the vegetable kale, and often appears when not wanted) or Durian (should be obvious, but because he stinks. Like durian). So what does Maas decide to do to Nehemia? Kill her off, obviously. I'd been warned about this beforehand - because people have no self-control when it comes to spoilers in this series, it's like GAME OF THRONES (guess how I learned about the Red Wedding?) - but it still totally caught me off-guard and made me angry. To understand why this plot twist made people so angry, it's because it's totally an example of the Magical Negro trope. Fans argue that Nehemia's death was important, because it was the catalyst to Celery finding out The Truth - but that is literally the exact definition of the "Magical Negro" trope. To quote the wonderful TV Tropes wiki: "[they] have no goal in life other than helping white people achieve their fullest potential; he may even be ditched or killed outright once he's served that purpose" (emphasis mine).

And here's what Nehemia says about her fate when Celery raises her from the dead to ask her for secrets and also lamely apologize: "I knew what my fate was to be, and I embraced it. I ran toward it. Because it was the only way for things to begin changing, for events to be set in motion" (290).


RIP, Nehemia. Cause of death: lazy writing.

After that, Celery sulks over Nehemia's death while also seeking vengeance, blames Kale, runs back to Durian, and stalks the Finnick O'dair knockoff, Archer, because of his possible involvement with the rise of the lost Terrasen queen, Attlestar Galactica (or, you know, whatever). Turns out Kale didn't mean to kill Nehemia and she blamed him mostly falsely, but that's okay because he's a saint. Turns out Durian has magic and so does his evol father, but that's okay, because Durian's a saint. Turns out Finnick O'dair was the bad guy, but that's okay, because Celery still has two other love interest to ping-pong between, so screw him, he's no saint. Oh, but the bestest part of all is the grand reveal:

CELERY IS THE PART-FAE DESCENDANT OF AN ACTUAL GODDESS AND THE LONG-LOST QUEEN. It's like, you thought your girl Celery was a Mary Sue in the last book with her "I'm so beautiful, don't hate me because I'm amazing" "I can kick butt and you'll never see me break a nail doing it, but let me list out my murders like I'm a DnDer listing out my character's statz" - hold the phone and let's take these Mary Sue levels from 1 to "This is my Original Character from my Crossover fic about TWILIGHT AND HARRY POTTER." She even has magical eyes that are blue ringed with gold and we get this line that actually made me laugh out loud, because it totally sounds like something someone writing a crossover fic about TWILIGHT and HARRY POTTER would say: "I somehow inherited the ability to shift. Between my Fae form and my human form" (312).

I'm also super confused. Did she know who she was all along? Lose her memory? I feel like this wasn't really foreshadowed that well at all in the first book. You'd think that if a reveal like that was planned, there'd be more hints so readers wouldn't be all, "holy literal deus ex machina, Batman!"

So, apart from... THAT... how was the book? The writing was significantly better. If the first book was a one-star review that had been bumped up to a 2, this book was a three-star review that had been bumped down to a two. The action sequences were better, the writing was tighter, there were fewer moments where I wanted to hit the EJECT button that would catapult Celery from the narrative so I would never have to lay eyes on her smug little face ever again. There's still a lot that's really frustrating, though, and I think the biggest technical problem of this story is that rather than the characters driving the story, the story drives the characters. Their characterization is inconsistent, especially Celery's, and they will fluctuate between very different personalities whenever it's convenient for the plot. Add to that the fact that Celery's "abilities" are constantly getting stacked on top of each other, like a very special game of Mary Sue Jenga, and that shtick gets old, fast.

I'll be continuing this project with HEIR OF FIRE, so stay tuned for more updates!

2 to 2.5 stars
January 3, 2021
"She knew his every move and he knew hers, as though they'd been dancing this waltz together all their lives. Faster, never faltering, never breaking her stare".

Vaya salto abismal ha dado Sarah J. Maas de Throne of Glass a Crown of Midnight. Aunque el primer libro me fascinó, este se lleva el premio por la evolución de la trama, los giros oscuros y los personajes más complejos que nunca.

Tras haber ganado el torneo y ahora ser la Campeona del Rey, Celaena está a merced de un tirano que lo único que quiere es despachar silenciosamente a todos y cada uno de sus enemigos. Así, Celaena se ha convertido en la marioneta del rey... o al menos eso cree todo el mundo. Mientras todo el mundo piensa que la voluntad de la Asesina de Adarlan ha sido doblegada y ahora sólo trabaja en pro de su libertad, Celaena tiene otros planes bajo la manga. Planes que, de ser descubiertos, terminarán con su ejecución.

Crown of Midnight es, definitivamente, uno de esos libros que no puedes dejar de leer. Todo el tiempo están sucediendo cosas, las reglas del juego cambian constantemente y con cada página que leemos nos enteramos de más conspiraciones, leyendas ocultas y trazas de magia que todo el mundo creía olvidadas. En este libro, Celaena camina por una delgada línea y se arriesga con cada movimiento que hace, ya no sólo con sus acciones en contra del Rey, sino con respecto a sus sentimientos. A medida que pasan las páginas, Celaena demuestra más que nunca por qué es la mejor asesina del reino y, además, lo difícil que le es confiar en alguien después de todo lo que vivió con Sam y la flagrante traición de la Assassin's Guild.

Aquí, también, conocemos a Archer, uno de los objetivos del Rey y, por ende, una de las personas a las que Celaena debe matar. Pero Archer es mucho más que un chico rico y bien posicionado, y junto con él, descubriremos que en Rifthold se cuecen mucho más que pequeñas insurrecciones contra el Rey, pues la semilla de una gran revolución está creciendo allí. Crown of Midnight es el libro con el que empezamos a entender la dimensión tan grande que tuvo la erradicación de la magia, la matanza de casas reales y la conquista de quien ahora es el Rey de todo el Imperio, el tirano. Poco a poco, nos dan pequeños detalles sobre diferentes tierras, diferentes reinos y, sobre todo, de la historia de Terrasen y quienes fueran los miembros de la familia real. ¡Y es que todo empieza a unirse! La gran revolución, los miembros perdidos de la familia real de Terrasen, el papel de Nehemia en las conspiraciones... todo va cayendo en su lugar.

Poco más puedo decir sin caer en spoilers, pero lo que sí mencionaré es que mi corazón fue muy feliz durante aproximadamente 70 páginas... y luego Sarah J. Maas lo destrozó sin piedad. Si hay algo que tienen los libros de esta mujer son emociones extremas, la capacidad de hacer que te enamores de todos los personajes, de que confíes en ellos y de que luego, por supuesto, no veas venir la puñalada que siempre estuvo preparada a tu espalda. Yo ahí lo voy a dejar.

Ahora, si me lo permiten, voy a hacer una gran sección de spoilers porque necesito sacar todo esto o voy a terminar en el psicólogo.


⋆Una de las primeras escenas, que es cuando Celaena llega a la sala donde están reunidos todos, el Rey incluido, y le lleva la prueba de que mató a sus últimos encargos es escalofriante. La cabeza y la mano cercenadas... vaya. Y las reacciones de Chaol y Dorian al ver lo desapegada que puede ser la chica a la que aman. Es todos súper fuerte.

⋆¿Podemos hablar de Mort, el picaporte parlanchín? ¡Lo amoooooo! Nunca pensé que llegara a amar tanto a un picaporte, jajajajaja. ¡Y es tan sarcástico! Adoro las conversaciones que tienen él y Celaena, sobre todo porque ella tiene poquísima paciencia y él es tremendamente misterioso. Es un vestigio de la magia de antaño y, por eso mismo, tiene muchas respuestas.

⋆Archer, maldito Archer. Es de esos personajes que sabes desde el principio que van a traer problemas, que esconden un montón de cosas detrás de sonrisas y actitud ingenua. ¡Maldita sea! Odié durante todo el libro ver, de nuevo, cómo Celaena iba caminando directa hacia una trampa, hacia otra traición más.

⋆¿Soy la única que no podía con los feels cuando Dorian y Chaol hablaban sobre Celaena? Son taaaaaan tontitos. Y me gusta mucho ver a Dorian en plan "sí, venga, ya la he superado", pero aún así la observa desde lejos y siente un pequeño rayo de envidia cada que ve a Chaol y a Celaena entrenando. Y, madre mía, es que Chaol es demasiado envarado en un principio para su propio bien. Cuando la mitad del libro se lo pasa pensando que no debe cruzar una línea invisible que lo separa de Celaena es como "¡POR FAVOR HAZLO YA QUE ELLA TAMBIÉN TE QUIERE!".

⋆Cuando mencionan a Aelin Galathynius por primera vez en el libro y quedas en plan de OMG.

⋆¿Podemos hablar de ese momento en el que Chaol explota y le dice a Celaena que SIEMPRE le va a preocupar lo que pase con ella? *inserte grito fangirl aquí*

⋆DIOSES DEL OLIM--- No, esperen. ¡POR EL WYRD! Hablemos de esa noche en la que Celaena salió a una misión, la hieren con una daga envenenada y por poquísimo logra llegar al Castillo y cae justo en los brazos de Chaol antes de desmayarse. ¡Lo pasé muy mal! Por momentos creí que no llegaría. Y luego cuando se despierta y ve que Chaol está dormido en la silla al lado de su cama. Morí de amor.

⋆Como si mi amor por Chaol no fuera ya enorme, está el momento en el que ambos están montando guardia en un baile real y Celaena se aburre y empieza a bailar sola. Y luego él la invita a bailar. Y son absolutamente preciosos. ¡Y Dorian los ve por la ventana! Ay, los amo.

⋆OMG, hablemos de la pequeña conversación que tienen Nehemia y Dorian en la que ella le dice que él tiene un gran poder escondido. ¡Y luego resulta que es así! Dorian tiene magia. Repito: DORIAN, el hijo del Rey que desterró la magia, TIENE MAGIA. Es tremendo ver cómo a lo largo del libro Dorian intenta comprender de dónde sale, por qué él la tiene y cómo demonios la controla, pues si alguien en el Castillo se da cuenta, estará muerto en cuestión de horas.

⋆Baba Yellowlegs. ¡Vaya arpía! Dioses, la odié tantísimo desde el primer momento en el que la vi. Primero con Dorian, cuando descubre todos sus secretos, y luego en la escena letal con Celaena. Creo que es de las peleas más angustiantes que he leído en algún libro. Esa vieja anciana es tan poderosa y retorcida que de verdad temí por la vida de Celaena. ¡Madre mía, qué batalla! Pero me alegró un montón que Celaena la matara al final, aunque tengo la sensación de que ese asesinato le traerá consecuencias muy feas en los próximos libros.

⋆Hay un momento en el que Celaena se va del Palacio justo antes del amanecer. El día en el que se cumplen diez años de la masacre de sus padres... El día en el que también se cumple un año desde que desató su ira en los campos de Endovier. Leer esa escena, ese flashback y ver lo poco que le importaba la vida y la frialdad que recorría sus venas es escalofriante. Esta es, creo, la primera escena en la que realmente conocemos a Celaena por su reputación, por su nombre de la Asesina de Adarlan. Un arma letal en estado puro.

⋆¿Qué tal el momento en el que Celaena le confiesa a Chaol que no ha matado a ninguno de los objetivos del Rey? ¡Y el pánico que él siente! ESO ES AMOR, señoras y señores. Y luego ella le dice que si alguien se entera, ella huirá... ¡Y él le dice que se iría con ella! ¡Y LUEGO SE BESAN! ¡POR FIN! ¡UN LIBRO Y MEDIO ESPERANDO ESTE BESO! Creo que, literalmente, grité un poco cuando leí esa escena porque LOS FEELS, asdjkaslkhdkasjd. ¡Y ES QUE NO SÓLO SE BESAN SINO QUE HACEN EL AMOR Y ES LA PRIMERA VEZ DE CELAENA Y ES CON CHAOL Y TODO ES PERFECTO EN EL MUNDO!

⋆Hablemos del hermoso regalo de cumpleaños de Celaena a Chaol. La cena más romántica de la vida en un ático lleno de lucecitas. Son lo más tierno de la vida.

⋆Y cuando las personas a las que Celaena había estado siguiendo para conseguir información sobre el movimiento rebelde en Rifthold secuestran a Chaol es cuando todo se empieza a ir a la mierda. Obviamente ella se vuelve loca, llega al lugar en donde lo tienen, se da cuenta de que todo ha sido una treta de Archer y mata a un montón de personas antes de que la hagan entrar en razón. Finalmente dejan ir a Chaol, pero no sin antes decirle a Celaena que Chaol sabía de una amenaza a la vida de Nehemia pero no le había dicho nada... Y Archer revela que el plan de matar a Nehemia está programado para esa noche. Celaena monta en cólera y se va corriendo hacia el Palacio con Chaol detrás, pero llegan muy tarde y Nehemia está muerta en su cama.

⋆La rabia se apodera de Celaena, quien solo puede culpar a Chaol de haber sabido la información y no habérsela dado a tiempo para proteger a su amiga. Así que se vuelve contra él y lo ataca sin un rastro de humanidad en ella. Está a punto de matarlo. Dioses, nunca leí algo tan terrible. El odio que emanaba de esas páginas, de Celaena, era horrible. Y lo que le dice de que nunca jamás volverá a ser su amiga y que siempre será su enemigo me partió el corazón. En mil pedacitos. Adiós, Chaolaena.

⋆Celaena en la mazmorra. Celaena en su cuarto. Celaena zombie.

⋆Después de su periodo de duelo, entra su periodo de ira. Y Celaena empieza a rastrear quién fue el culpable de la muerte de Nehemia. Y se da cuenta de que un Ministro, el que patrocinaba a Grave en el concurso del Rey, fue quien dio la orden, así que la Asesina de Adarlan sale a las calles de Rifthold a buscar su venganza. Y vaya que sí la obtiene. La muerte de Grave es una de las más sangrientas de estos libros. Y el momento en el que Celaena le lleva la cabeza de Grave al Ministro en plena reunión y con el Rey ahí... épico.

⋆Ese momento en el que Celaena se va a la tumba de Nehemia y canta una canción en un idioma extraño. Y Chaol la escucha. ¡Y empieza a investigar y a tener sus teorías sobre el pasado de Celaena! Poco a poco va llegando a que puede ser de una de las familias reales que el Rey masacró cuando desterró todo atisbo de magia.

⋆Todo eso de las Wyrdkeys, de su poder y de que el Rey puede tener una o dos es escalofriante.

⋆¿Qué tal las mazmorras que encuentra Celaena justo debajo de la Torre del Reloj? ¡Y la criatura con la que se encuentra ahí! Joder, este fue otro de los momentos en los que pensé que Celaena iba a quedar seriamente herida. ¡Y encima con Dorian detrás de ella! Esas páginas son absolutamente escalofriantes. Pero son una gran escena porque finalmente los dos logran sellar una puerta y contener a la criatura... y ahí es cuando Celaena ve por primera vez a Dorian usar su magia.

⋆Durante todo el libro, hay momentos en los que hablan de la Ferian Gap y de que oyen aleteos al otro lado. Y yo lo único que puedo pensar en esas páginas es: OMG, ILLYRIAN WARRIORS, RHYYYYYYYYYYYYS!

⋆Oh, gods... Y aquí llegamos a la parte del libro en la que Celaena la embarra muy mal. Se le ocurre abrir un portal al mundo de los muertos para hablar con Nehemia una última vez, pero todo sale fatal y termina apareciendo un espectro horroroso. Chaol y Dorian aparecen y también están en peligro. Cuando Chaol llega ve que Fleetfoot, la perrita de Celaena, está herida y justo cuando la va a salvar, el monstruo se la lleva al otro lado del portal. Y Celaena, que está en muy mal estado y casi ni se puede levantar, VE CÓMO CHAOL ATRAVIESA EL PORTAL Y ES COMO "WTF, POR QUÉ HACES ESO". ¡Y luego ella cruza! ¡Y CUANDO CRUZA EL PORTAL ENTRAN A UN MUNDO DONDE TODAVÍA HAY MAGIA Y CELAENA SE TRANSFORMA Y REVELA SUS FACCIONES DE FAE Y TODO ES MUY FUERTE, PUES SALVA A CHAOL A SU PERRITA, SALE DE AHÍ Y SELLAN EL PORTAL.

⋆Lo único bueno de esta experiencia tan traumática, reveladora y llena de shock es que Celaena descubre que no fue el Ministro quien ordenó asesinar a Nehemia, sino el mismísimo Archer, rata asquerosa del demonio. Así que, obviamente, nuestra asesina favorita va a por su venganza. Y vaya sí es dulce. No se imaginan lo que disfruté leyendo cómo mataba al desgraciado bastardo traicionero.

⋆¿Podemos hablar del momento en el que, después de mil quinientos años, Celaena y Chaol vuelven a hablar como personas civilizadas y ella le pregunta cómo puede verla si ya sabe lo que es? ¡Y ÉL ESTÁ A PUNTO DE DECIRLE QUE ES PORQUE LA AMA! ¡Y, JODER, ELLA NO LO DEJA TERMINAR LA FRASE! Y mi corazón duele porque quiero que Chaolaena sea real, pero en el fondo sé que ya nunca sucederá.

⋆Y encima Chaol tiene la brillante idea de crear un plan con su padre para que envíen a Celaena, como Campeona del Rey, a asesinar a la familia real de Wendlyn... Pero lo que Chaol quiere en realidad es protegerla y alejarla del Rey ahora que sabe que es Fae. Y comete un gran error, porque el lugar de Celaena debería estar en Rifthold averiguando lo de las Wyrdkeys. ¡Pero a la vez es como OMG, la están enviando a donde la línea con los fae es aún más delgada y en donde puede contactar con las personas que harán de la revolución algo real!


Profile Image for destiny ♡ howling libraries.
1,743 reviews5,281 followers
March 15, 2023
#0.1-#0.5 The Assassin’s Blade ★★★★★
#1 Throne of Glass ★★★★★
#2 Crown of Midnight ★★★★★
#3 Heir of Fire ★★★★★
#4 Queen of Shadows ★★★★★
#5 Empire of Storms ★★★★★
#6 Tower of Dawn ★★★★★

re-read update: March 2023


original review: June 2018
I’ve got this schedule going where I’m trying to read one book in this series per month, leading up to the Kingdom of Ash release, so that I’m all caught up in time for the big finale, but this one took me a little while to pick it up because I had a horrible slump in May. I went a week without touching a book, which hasn’t happened to me in years, and—no exaggeration—this was the only book that was able to cut through the slump for me.

“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.”

I knew a lot of people had told me Crown of Midnight was a big turning point in the series—for better or for worse, though most people I spoke to told me this was one of their favorites—so I went into it unsure of what to expect, and thinking I’d just be content if I liked it equally as much as Throne of Glass. This book totally knocked out all of my uncertainty, though; it was fast-paced, full of plot twists and turns that, while not entirely unpredictable, were endlessly fun to watch unravel.

But death was her curse and her gift, and death had been her good friend these long, long years.

While Celaena wasn’t terribly lovable in book 1, I truly enjoyed her character in this installment. It felt like I was back with the assassin from the novellas, who was someone I could genuinely enjoy and appreciate as a character. I won’t harp on again about the polarizing opinions her character draws out of readers, but I’ll stand by what I said in my TOG review: I think Celaena deserves a lot more credit than she typically receives.

The rest of the world quieted into nothing. In that moment, after ten long years, Celaena looked at Chaol and realised she was home.

Of course, the biggest aspect of this book isn’t Celaena’s work as an assassin, and honestly, I don’t even think it’s the political intrigue or the obstacles she faces with the whole saving-the-world-from-an-evil-king business—it’s romance, as any Sarah J. Maas reader would expect it to be. Knowing how further installments in the series pan out probably biased my views a little bit regarding the relationship in this one, but without spoiling anything, I’ll just say that I genuinely enjoyed Chaol’s character, and while he does some really stupid shit, I didn’t feel like his punishments suited the crime.

She smiled sadly. “You'll figure it out. And when you do...” She shook her head, knowing she shouldn't say it, but doing it anyway. “When you do, I want you to remember that it wouldn't have made any difference to me. It's never made any difference to me when it came to you. I’d still pick you. I’ll always pick you.”

There’s just one thing I didn’t like, and I’ll word this vaguely for anyone who hasn’t read it, but if you have read it, you’ll know what I mean: there’s a certain character in this series who made a “sacrifice” of themselves that was in terribly poor taste, and frankly, MADE NO SENSE. I almost knocked a star off just for this one thing. (Feel free to hit me up for private rants. I have a lot of feelings.)

To escape death, she'd become death.

Overall, though, Crown of Midnight was a huge success for me. Maybe I’m buttering it up a little bit because it kicked my slump’s ass, but I’m so glad I continued the series and now I’m super excited to move on to book 3!
Profile Image for chan ☆.
1,072 reviews51.4k followers
January 23, 2022
edit jan 22, 2022: um. this was so fucking boring? i mean i guess i kind of agree with my initial rating that this wasn't the worst and at least celaena now has the motivation to help someone other than herself but god the journey to get there was paved with boredom and needless sacrifice of fun side characters.

also why did she give chaol that good wap??? of all of the men in this damn book series...



Okay Sarah, you sly bitch*. This didn't completely suck.

This is a hard book to review because I don't really want to go into the plot (too complicated) or the characters (not a ton of development) in depth. What I can say though is that once a major plot point happened about 50-60% through the book, things REALLY changed.

The book turned from a really slow book, with neither character development nor fast plot, to a book that kind of had both! Now it wasn't crazy character development, I think that'll really happen next book. But Celaena showed hints of being less self absorbed and odious!!! And the plot kept me interested, just like it needed to.

That being said, it wasn't enough to redeem this book as a 5 star read for me. Celaena still kind of sucked and I was really turned off by the love triangle. Chaol and Dorian: still VERY boring. Where is this imperfect yet sexy soulmate that I know is coming (both from spoilers & knowing Maas)???

But whatever, I'm remaining patient. 3 I-wanted-to-love-you-but-still-not-quite-perfect stars.

*You're not actually a bitch, I kind of love you.
August 31, 2013
This book was just pure fun and excitement; it is not without a lot of flaws, but overall, my enjoyment of the plot propelled it into a highly satisfying read. I have to swallow my words when it comes to this series; I did bash on the first book in this series a lot because it was so similar to one of my favorite books. Due to my prejudice, I did not much like the first book in this series. It was an enjoyable read, but the characters were too lacking in depth for me, and the entire book just lacked a certain something that would otherwise make it shine, make it memorable.

With that said, I loved this book. This is an excellent, excellent sequel; I love being surprised, I love being proved wrong in my pessimism about a book, and Crown of Midnight turned out to be so much more enjoyable than I thought it would be. There is no second-book syndrome here.

It is not without its flaws by any means. Celaena remains perfectly...well, perfect, for the most part. The love triangle is persistent and painful, and at more than one point, I wanted to take Dorian and Chaol and just bash their heads together. However, every single character mature and develops, and I did make up my mind as to whom I prefer before the book is over.

A complaint I often have in fast-paced plots is that, interestingly enough, they're often so boring despite everything. This was not the case for this book; from the very beginning, I was hooked. The action rarely stops, and even in the quieter, more introspective moments, I never find myself yawning. I finished this book in 2 sittings, rarely finding myself switching books in-between. Given my highly ADHD book-reading personality, this says something about my enjoyment of it and its ability to keep me constantly engrossed.

The plot: fast-paced, completely immersing. The plot twists and turns are just interesting enough to keep me absorbed, and are never too far-fetched that they would stretch the boundaries of my disbelief. I absolutely loved it. It was never bogged down by too many flashbacks, the main narrative is Celaena's, alternately Dorian and Chaol's. Their narratives, particularly those of Chaol's, were more on the introspective side, but never bored me, and were short enough so that it did not slow down the rapid pacing of the book. The writing is great; actions scenes were well-done, the dialogue is believable, the verbal style is descriptive and flows well without ever coming close to purple prose.

Celaena: My main problem with her in the first book is that Celaena is too perfect. That problem still persists largely in this book, but I found it more tolerable, in part because she breaks down. That's right, our rational, cool-headed, perfectly calm Celaena finally breaks down---and I loved it. She has her Bella Swan moment, and for once, I have no complaints. She literally does not eat, does not bathe. She cries, she is prostate with grief...and it was awesome. I loved seeing her being emotional, I loved seeing her break through her tough outer shell. I loved seeing her come out of it.
A familiar, dark fire rippled in her gut, spreading through her, dragging her down into an abyss without end.
Celaena Sardothien stood from her chair.
I fucking stood up from my chair and shouted "YEAH," at this scene.

It is fleeting, in the grand scale of the book, and I do wish she had more moments of vulnerability, of still more development that would make me relate to her more as a character, but I'll take what I can get.

Celaena's other fault is not her own...not so much as the author's. The author seems to shy away from the idea that Celaena is an assassin. For a king's assassin, she makes Celaena one in name only. Celaena does not act like an assassin. She only kills when she absolutely has to---by accident, almost. Celaena is not so much an assassin as an investigator, a detective, someone caught in the fray in the middle of a desperate fight who has to kill or be killed. Right at the beginning of the book, Celaena reveals to us that she does not actually kill her targets, but instead helps them to escape. I think this is meant to make us empathize with Celaena as a character, to make her more human. It just makes me respect her less. It's a book about an assassin. I expect an assassin to kill. If I wanted to read a mystery novel, I'd go get one.

Give me my fucking assassin, dammit. Celaena doesn't act too smart sometimes, for me, she acts rather foolishly. She trusts people with too much more information than I was comfortable with, despite everything, she still acts more naive than I would expect of someone so seemingly competent. Her actions aren't without consequence, if found out, she could endanger the lives of so many, and she seems to disregard that.

There is one plot twist within this book that I desperately, desperately hate. It launches Celaena from mildly perfect right smack into the middle of a Mary Sue stereotype. Ugh. We'll see how that goes.

Dorian: for a large part of the book, Dorian is...let's face it...a huge fucking pussy. He doesn't stand up to his father, the king. He is largely passive. He spends the majority of the time resentfully angry at the developing relationship between Celaena and Chaol and whining and not doing much about it besides mope. He is depressed about the fact that Celaena is no longer his pretty pretty assassin-to-be in lovely dresses---and could be, in fact, a cold-blooded killer. Which he knows she is. But he's still shocked. Just SHOCKED. Sigh.
Her lovely dresses and ornate clothes were gone, replaced by an unforgiving, close-cut black tunic and pants, her hair pulled back in a long braid that fell into the folds of that dark cloak she was always wearing. She was a beautiful wraith---and when she looked at him, it was like she didn’t even know who he was. He couldn’t help wondering if he’d ever meant anything to Celaena at all.
Get over yourself, Dorian!

Dorian's character does improve for the better...eventually. It takes a while. Actually, a long while. A teenaged girl could get a lesson or two from Dorian about how to mope. Overall, I do think his character development was one of the better ones depicted within this book. If I had to pick a side, I'd be on Team Dorian for sure.

Chaol: I may be showing a definite bias here, but Chaol can go screw himself. PURELY OBJECTIVE, OF COURSE. He worries so goddamn much. He has no trust in Celaena's abilities to take care of herself. He acts more like her goddamn mother (who's dead, but whatever) than a potential love interest.
This dress, with its close-fitting bodice, long, tight sleeves, and gently flowing skirt, was about as new and different as it came.
Which was why, when she ran into Chaol on her way out of her rooms, she wasn’t very surprised when he stopped dead and blinked. Then blinked again.
Chaol stood in the hallway, his bronze eyes traveling down the front of her dress, then up again. “You’re not wearing that.”
Ok, mom.

I hate his constant worrying and fussing over her; it shows a lack of trust, it shows a lack of confidence. Despite Celaena's obvious competence, Chaol hides things from her, he constantly berates her, and basically never trusts her to do her own fucking job. I'm just a little biased. Grumble. Fine. He's really not that bad overall. But I still prefer Dorian.

The love triangle: I'm not exaggerating about the continued love triangle here, but I have to admit, it wasn't that bad. The emotions were well-done, the indecisions and internal conflicts were well-depicted, and this is one of the better triangles I've seen within a book. Dare I say it? I like it, and I'm glad that the triangle continues. It makes things interesting, even though if Celaena ever makes a choice and it's the wrong one (according to my opinion, of course), this reader will be very, very upset.

Overall: a highly enjoyable book, and goddamn, I have to wait how long until the next?
Profile Image for Lia Carstairs.
417 reviews2,316 followers
July 31, 2022
dammit i realize the friendly reminder i was preparing doesn't work *sobs*

okay, so I actually don't hate Chaol??? Like before this reread I totally did, but now I don't. *shook*

out of curiosity, does anyone actually like him?

ahaha I do get the feeling that I'm going to remember why I hated him once I reread QoS but maybe I won't...? Until then.

═══*.·:·.☽✧ ✦ ✧☾.·:·.*═══

“The best lies were always mixed with truth.”

After winning the title of the King's Champion through a deadly tournament, Celaena Sardothien is now doing the king's dirty work tasks, while being silently judged by the others a.k.a. Dorian, Chaol and Nehemia. Little do they know she's not actually...going through with these 'tasks'.

For the king to discover would mean death -- death for her and for Chaol.

Chaol, whom she harbors ~feelings~ for.

The question is, will she be able to keep up this charade?

═══*.·:·.☽✧ ✦ ✧☾.·:·.*═══

“Why are you crying?"
"Because," she whispered, her voice shaking, "you remind me of what the world ought to be. What the world can be.”

I definitely loved Celaena way more in this book than the first -- but it was mostly after part 2 that I did...for reasons you'll know if you read the book. She was a lot more savage there where in the first part she was more like a lovesick fool. (not that that's bad of course)

After the halfway mark, I was cackling like a maniac when I saw how bloodthirsty she was. Totally cheering her on, especially when she tortured said people that deserved it. what does that say about me? hmmm

This scene was one of my favourites ohmygod im wheezing-
“Then Celaena and the King of Adarlan smiled at each other, and it was the most terrifying thing Dorian had ever seen.”

But with all of that, she was also in p a i n. And Celaena in pain = me in pain.

And this is just the beginning -- I don't remember much of this series, but I remember enough of HoF to know that I'm gonna have to be preparing myself for the feels.

Ready for the sobbing.😃🔫

═══*.·:·.☽✧ ✦ ✧☾.·:·.*═══

"And he deserved someone who would look at him like that, even if the love wouldn't be the same, even if the girl wouldn't be her.

So Dorian closed his eyes, and took another long breath. And when he opened his eyes, he let her go.”

I'm trying to figure out why I didn't like Dorian before, but I honestly don't remember.

Dorian is such a cinnamon roll.

Like I was meh on him before but no omg I love him and I now see why everyone loves him. Even though this is a reread, I never realized how amazing he is. How could I not have loved him??? smh

He's so sweet and the way him and Celaena were so cold and distant from each other in the beginning -- *sobs* heartbreaking. I will never forget how SJM destroyed that ship in the first book.

And even after the way Celaena treated him in the first half, he was there for her in the 2nd half and that is just ughhhh he's so sweet. I want more Dorian :(

═══*.·:·.☽✧ ✦ ✧☾.·:·.*═══

“There had never been any line between them, only his own stupid fear and pride.

Because from the moment he'd pulled her out of that mine in Endovier and she had set those eyes upon him, still fierce despite a year in hell, he'd been walking toward this, walking to her.

And now finally, Chaol. 🛑There will be SPOILERS from this book🛑

My feelings for Chaol are bit complicated right now. It doesn't help that I literally remember almost nothing from this series, only bits and pieces. I hated Chaol before rereading -- I didn't remember why, but I remembered that I just did.

So for like the first half of this book that hatred did not change. I was so not cheering for the romance between Celaena and Chaol like no, no, no. Just no.

And then he gets kidnapped, Celaena saves him and there she finds out that he kept the secret that the king was going to be talking with Nehemia. Nehemia dies, Celaena blames Chaol, I blame Chaol.

But I forgot that Chaol wasn't actually at fault. I didn't remember that the king didn't kill Nehemia. IT WAS ARCHER. *shook* why did I not remember that???

Anyways, so really the only bad thing Chaol did in the end was keep away from telling Celaena that the kill was going to talk to Nehemia, and probably kill her anyways if that happened.

BUT I mean, you can't really fault him that he kept a secret that the king told him not to tell anyone else. He has been sworn to the king for basically all his life?

Still, that doesn't excuse that he kept that from the person he supposedly claimed to love. ehhh idk but it's not surprising considering Chaol's personality. So yeah, I don't hate him, but I don't love him either. (I'm gonna probably want to kill him in QoS)

Although I was laughing so hard to his reaction finding out that Celaena was Aelin AHAHAHA sucker.

damn wow, so I ended up writing so much about Chaol

I'm so so excited to reread Heir of Fire ahhh ROWANN HERE I COME. ALTHOUGH I DIDN'T LIKE YOU MUCH. I wonder how I'll find him this time around.

more Fae yes, yes , yessss

═══*.·:·.☽✧ ✦ ✧☾.·:·.*═══

Pre-read Review:

Buddy re-read PART 2 with this group of chaotic lunatics

muahahhaha I've already prepared a friendly reminder *cackles*
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