I bought this novel way back when it first was published back in 2012. I remember hearing that it was the teen "A Song of Ice and Fire" and I was intrI bought this novel way back when it first was published back in 2012. I remember hearing that it was the teen "A Song of Ice and Fire" and I was intrigued. But, after a year of the book just sitting on my shelf, I donated the novel. Recently (like late March) I found the whole series for $30.00 and decided to retry it. I have really mixed thoughts on this novel. And, a lot of those mixed thoughts are due to our leading lady, Celaena Sardothien, an 18-year-old assassin in the kingdom of Adarlan.
I couldn't understand Celaena. She has a background of having trained as an assassin for ten years. The whole kingdom fears her - she is the best assassin in the history of assassins. And, her thought patterns and actions within the story, at least for me, didn't seem to fit that type of character. I believe the author was trying to show us that Celaena is more than an assassin with her witty remarks and her love of fashion; however, the execution was rather poor. Celaena came across as vain, selfish, reckless, and even unintelligent.
Another issue I have with the novel is that almost all the other characters (and even court life) in the castle are painted with broad strokes. There is the playboy prince with the heart of gold, the quiet princess whose secretly a rebel, the cold (and ridiculously young) head of the guards with a heart of gold, the mean royal who just wants to marry a prince, and the harsh king. Not to mention the fact that there is apparently no one living in this castle. Characters wander around, never seeing anyone. Things are done in "secret" and yet we never see it.
The Champion Tournament is supposed to be a hush-hush tournament made up of soldiers, thieves, and assassins. The goal is to find the king a new champion. No one is supposed to know about it, expect for a few select people. (Not even the Queen knows!) And yet. . .the final duel is held outside and in the presence of the king.
All this said, I did like some of the characters and I can see some interesting story lines peeking around all the nonsense. I'll give the next novel a chance. ...more
A bittersweet story about what happens when the children who slip through the wardrobes, magic portals, doorways, and rabbit holes, return to reality.A bittersweet story about what happens when the children who slip through the wardrobes, magic portals, doorways, and rabbit holes, return to reality. Often they cannot handle the return and often wish to return "home" - the place they feel they truly belong and the place they were truly accepted. Sadly for them, most of these children have been kicked out for not following the rules are for getting too old. Thankfully, they have Eleanor West's Home for Wayward Children to help them get used to the idea that doors rarely open twice.
Nancy is a new student and all she wants is to return to the Halls of the Dead. Sadly for her, she cannot seem to find her door back and her parents have shipped her off to West's. Thankfully for her, Nancy finds something akin to friendship with her roommate Sumi and one of the school's only boys, Kade. And that is when the dark mysterious stuff starts. ...more
The series is still enjoyable, but I really feel that it is time to start wrapping things up. I feel like the characters are coming to their nature enThe series is still enjoyable, but I really feel that it is time to start wrapping things up. I feel like the characters are coming to their nature endings....more
This novel was full of Celaena training brutality with Rowan Whitethorn. Pages and pages of Celaena - throwing the biggest pity party over the eventsThis novel was full of Celaena training brutality with Rowan Whitethorn. Pages and pages of Celaena - throwing the biggest pity party over the events of the last two novels - while Rowan tells her she isn't worth keeping alive. But hey, at least Rowan isn't full of self-pity. (I kind of like him.) Though, his sudden feelings change for Celaena had me side-eyeing a bit.
Meanwhile, this novel added several new characters and story lines. Some of which seemed to come out of nowhere and did very little to truly advance the plot. There is also just way too many people being way too over dramatic about events they had/have no control over. It got to be a bit much.
I believe I'm going to have a love-hate relationship with this series. I'm breezing through them rather quickly, and yet I'm not LOVING them the way II believe I'm going to have a love-hate relationship with this series. I'm breezing through them rather quickly, and yet I'm not LOVING them the way I feel like I should. I recall hearing that this was "A Song of Fire and Ice for the younger set" and I was rather excited about that idea. It doesn't quite seem to be that, though.
This novel was rather hard for me to read. It suffered from Second Book Syndrome - a lot going on and being explained and yet not a lot happening. I like the lore and fantasy elements that are coming into focus, however a lot of the elements felt messy and thrown together.
I must admit that I'm also still rather indifferent when it comes to Celaena and Chaol. Celaena is still vain, shallow, selfish, and oddly unintelligent for the greatest assassin in the land. Chaol is increasingly annoying, ignorant, and pompous. Maybe they are made for each other. Or maybe they are a bit too much. I felt a bit like the romance really took over the novel. I wanted a lot more world building and just got a whole lot of romance.
Really, it's the story of the past and the fantasy elements that are keeping my interest. I'm really hoping as more characters come into the picture, I'll have more stories to be interested in. ...more