Ferdy's Reviews > The Assassin and the Empire

The Assassin and the Empire by Sarah J. Maas
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's review
Aug 09, 2012

really liked it
Read on August 09, 2012

3.5 stars - spoilers

After leaving their mentor, Arobynn, the King of the Assassins, Celeana and Sam are settling into their new life. Knowing that Arobynn will one day seek vengence, Sam is desperate to leave the Guild of Assassins and move somewhere out of Arobynn's reach. Celaena is reluctant to leave her new home and life but ultimately decides that it'll be safer to start somewhere new. However for their plans to work they need money, so Sam and Celaena agree to one last job - to assassinate the city's biggest crime lord.

-There was so much that happened in this one, at least it felt like a lot. Celaena's life completely changes by the end and the journey she takes was actually pretty engrossing.

-Celaena was still her usual selfish self but she was slightly more tolerable this time around. It was easier to relate to her because she cared about someone other than herself and she was actually willing to compromise and make sacrifices rather than demanding things her own way.
She did come across as really stupid at the end. I mean she'd been betrayed, hurt and lied to by Arobynn yet she refused to see what he was doing. I wanted Celaena to acknowledge Arobynn's duplicity and promise to take him down but she didn't manage to put the pieces together - she's meant to be smart but how can she be when she can't see what's right in front of her?? I don't like dumb heroines.

-Sam was as perfect as ever - he was far to good for Celaena. I was disappointed with what happened to him in the end - it was depressing. I knew how it was going to end but I was still hoping that things weren't as they seemed. Sam was the one of the main reasons that I actually got through all the novellas, so I don't know if I'm all that eager to read the novel knowing he won't be in it.

-Arobynn - I hate him and I also love him. Even though it was pretty clear that he was a bad guy, he wasn't depicted as some sort of cartoonish character. He was cunning and clever to have orchestarted Sam's demise and Celaena's imprisonment. I don't know why he didn't rescue her at the end though - he was obsessed with her, so I would have expected him to save her so she'd feel obliged to stay with him but instead he did nothing. I hope that he'll be causing trouble in the novels.

-It was such BS that Celaena wasn't ready to have sex. She loved Sam, they lived together and she knew him for years - how much more ready could she get?! I just didn't buy that she didn't want to sleep with him, her reason of not being ready didn't seem believable, it was just a weak excuse for her to remain a virgin for when she meets her HEA because in YA land the heroines are only allowed to have sex with one guy, the hero - heaven forbid her having any enjoyable sexual experiences outside of her tru wuv. Of course the same rules don't apply to the guys and I'm sure her inevitable hero will have a vast amount of sexual experience - ugh. I'm so sick of the virgin heroine/sexually experienced hero trope - it's not romantic or sexy, it's just cringey.

This was the best novella by far. The storyline, the action, the romance and the characters were engrossing. I hated what happened to Sam though. As much as I enjoyed this novella, I'm not 100% certain that I want to read the novel - I probably will though because I'd like to see Celaena finally figure out who betrayed her and have her hunt down Arobynn and Farran.
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10/01/2016 marked as: read

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