Review: Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

It’s been almost a year since I finished Kingdom of Ash, the final book in the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas, and one of my all time favourite book series. I think that means it’s about time I wrote a review, right?

I wanted to wait until I’d read the entire series before I reviewed it. It’s a long one, with seven increasingly wordy books (the final book is over 1000 pages!). Sometimes it’s nice to know whether it’s going to be worth your time investing in a long series before you start book one. And honestly, when I read Throne of Glass I had absolutely no idea the story would end up where it did in Kingdom of Ash, a lot happens between books one and seven (A LOT) , so even if you read the first book and weren’t all that enthralled, you might end up loving the series overall. Let me give you a tiny taste of what to expect from this behemoth of a series, so you know whether to invest your valuable reading time in it…

TL;DR Ex-assassin and slave, Celaena Sardothien is plucked from the salt mines by Prince Dorian to be his contestant in a deadly game to choose the King’s new royal assassin. Spanning a year in her life, the series follows the sassy and silver-tongued trained killer as she rediscovers who she is underneath all the layers of shame, secrecy and tragedy. Only by facing her past head on and accepting the path she’s been forced to take in order to survive, can she uncover the truth about her heritage and become who she was always destined to be.

5 stars

Rather than review each book individually, which has the potential to be incredibly spoilerific – and nobody wants that – I thought I’d give you a brief overview of the series as a whole. If you prefer to go into a new series without knowing anything though, stop reading right here and go pick up Throne of Glass, because I’m not going to be able to write this review without giving certain things away. You have been warned!

In Throne of Glass, we meet our downtrodden heroine, Celaena Sardothien,  who has been imprisoned for murder (what with her being an assassin and all) and sentenced to a life of slavery in the salt mines of Adarlan. Until one day a handsome prince arrives to whisk her away – oh wait, no, that’s a different story. He’s actually come to drag the notorious assassin out of one kind of imprisonment and into another, as his champion in a competition to become the king’s new royal assassin. Better than slavery though, right? Well no, not to Celaena, who hates the king with a passion and is not thrilled to compromise her own personal (very morally grey) code to kill for him.

We’re thrown into a classic competition trope, with a terrifying bunch of brawlers, hard-men and nimble-fingered thieves all hoping to escape their respective prison sentences and legitimise their criminal ways. No judgement here. When people start turning up dead – outside the confines of the highly dangerous competition – Celaena realises there’s something darker going on underneath the surface at the glass castle.

Along the way, Celaena gathers a tight-knit group of friends – from Fae warriors and magic-wielding royals, to skilled soldiers and even a pup named Fleetfoot – building a band of brothers (and badass sisters) to rival any army.

Throw in a coven of wyvern-riding witches, a pirate king with a supernatural knowledge of the waves, and hordes of dark demonic parasites that can possess human hosts to wreak their own special brand of chaos, and you’ve pretty much got ToG in a nutshell.

I can’t say much more without potentially spoiling a lo for you (if I haven’t already!), so if any of that sounds like your cup of tea, please go and pick up Throne of Glass and see what all the fuss is about. You (probably) won’t regret it!

If I can give you one tip on picking up this series, it would be to get the audio books. Not only does it make reading such a long series a much less daunting task, it also means you get the perfect pronunciation of all the crazy names and places – and if you’ve ready any Maas books you’ll know how much she loves a difficult-to-pronounce name! You’re on your own with the spelling though…

Oh, one last thing, this is more New Adult than Young Adult and there are a few somewhat steamy scenes in the later books, so it’s definitely one for the older teens and up.

Enjoy, and let me know what you thought of the series if you’ve already read it!

Lyndsey

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Review Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas Lyndsey's Book Blog

Six sequels I’m dying to read!

Hi folks, I thought I’d give you all a little look-see at which book series I’m loving right now and which sequels I can’t wait to read. I’m going to cheat a little bit today, some of these books are yet to be released, some are recent releases, and some are years old, I just haven’t managed to squeeze them into my busy schedule yet.

Let me know if you’ve read any of these and what you thought!

Lyndsey's Book Blog (5)

Escaping from Houdini by Kerri Maniscalco

How beautiful do those covers look together? I’m not usually a huge fan of people on covers, but these are just gorgeous. I especially like the cityscapes that are blended in, as a big part of these stories is the location they’re set in (London, Romania and a luxury cruise liner to America!). I just finished the audio book of Hunting Prince Dracula a couple of weeks ago and loved it even more than Stalking Jack the Ripper, so I’m really excited for Escaping from Houdini’s release this month! I’ve preordered it using my September Audible credit so I can download it as soon as it goes live.

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Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J. Maas

Probably my favourite series of all time (after Harry Potter, of course) and soon to be a TV series! I’m just about to finish reading the paperback of Tower of Dawn, which has been a new experience after listening to the audio books of the previous five books – I normally get through these in a week or two, but it’s taken months thanks to a new baby stealing all my reading time! Thank the gods I’m back to work and can listen to the audio book on my commute when Kingdom of Ash is released next month.

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Now I Rise & Bright We Burn by Kiersten White

I still can’t believe I haven’t read Now I Rise! At least now Bright We Burn is out I can read both in quick succession instead of dying from the long wait. I listened to the audio book of And I Darken (and loved it!), and for some reason book two never appeared on Audible. I waited and waited, but I guess I’m going to have to get my hands on the paperbacks of these two. I’ll have to hit up the mobile library next time it comes around!

(Do you have mobile libraries in other countries? It’s basically a minibus full of books that drives around rural villages. You can order books like a normal library. They’re pretty great when you live out in the sticks, but might only come once a month depending where you live.)

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Half Lost by Sally Green

Half Bad was such an unexpected joy of a book, I’d never heard of it until a friend who works for Waterstones gave it to me just after it was released, but I was hooked immediately. Green’s got such a captivating way of writing, she throws you straight into Nathan’s head and you barely get a chance to catch your breath until you’ve finished the whole book. I read Half Wild a couple of years ago, and I’ve just never gotten round to Half Lost (clearly putting off ending the series and saying goodbye to Nathan and Gabriel!).

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Fire & Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore

Graceling was the best YA fantasy I’d read in about a year, and has cemented its position as one of my all time favourites. The story is just so well crafted, with beautifully detailed world-building and fully-formed characters. The whole concept of Graces is fascinating, like natural talents and affinities taken to the nth degree, and I can’t wait to find out more about them in the two companion books, Fire and Bitterblue. They follow different characters in the same fictional world, with some of the cast of Graceling popping up as cameos, and Bitterblue obviously focusing on one of the secondary characters from book one. If you haven’t read Graceling yet, I’d definitely recommend it, I jumped on the bandwagon late, but now I’m practically driving it!

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Lord of Shadows & Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare

I’ve been obsessed with all things Shadowhunter since I first read City of Bones about 8 years ago, quickly ordering and devouring all the available sequels, and then The Infernal Devices, and stalking the filming of the Mortal Instruments movie with Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower. I actually enjoyed the film and was really disappointed when it didn’t do that well, so I was thrilled when they decided to turn it into a TV series. Now Shadowhunters is coming to an end and I’m left with the book series again. Not that I’m complaining, I’ve got Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy and Lord of Shadows sitting on my shelf just waiting to be read, and Queen of Air and Darkness will soon be out in the world. Then there’s the fourth series Clare is planning, The Last Hours, and I cannot wait to hear about Will and Tessa’s descendants! So it’s not like I’m struggling for content over here.

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And that is a very non-exhaustive list of the sequels I’m desperate to read and plan to jump headlong into as soon as I get a spare moment (babies, amirite?). Which series are you loving right now and can’t wait to get your hands on the next book?

 

Lyndsey

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Top ten series I started and haven’t finished (yet)

I’m jumping back into the Top Ten Tuesday club this week, one of my favourite things about TTT is that you don’t have to take part every week, you can dip in and out when the topic takes your fancy, or – like me – you finally get a minute to type! TTT is a blog meme hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl where we pick ten books or series on a different theme each week. This week it’s Top Ten Book Series I Gave Up On/Don’t Plan to Finish.

I’m going to split my list into series I don’t plan to continue reading, and ones I do but haven’t gotten round to yet, because, you know, life.

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Book Series I DNF’ed

Red QueenMaze Runner  Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief Red Rising by Pierce Brown Prince of Thorns Mark Lawrence Me Before You

  1. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

    1. I still wonder whether I should just bite the bullet and read War Storm, it’s incredibly frustrating DNFing a series on the penultimate book! But I just couldn’t get on with Mare, and I enjoyed each book less and less, so I decided to cut my losses and just stop reading the series. If anyone’s read War Storm and wants to tell me how it ends please do in the comments – just leave a spoiler warning in case anyone else hasn’t read it yet!
  2. Maze Runner by James Dashner

    1. I read books one and two in the Maze Runner series, book two took me months to finish and I really didn’t enjoy it, so despite the fact I’d bought the entire boxset, I quit reading after Scorch Trials. I might watch the last two movies just out of curiosity, but even they aren’t great in my opinion. I was gutted I didn’t love this series because so many people online raved about it. Oh well, different strokes and all that.
  3. Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan

    1. Sadly, I think I just came to this series too old, which is heartbreaking because I bet I would have really loved it at sixteen or younger. I enjoyed book one, but with so many other books out there I didn’t love it enough to commit to the rest of the series and all the spin-offs Riordan has written. I’d definitely recommend it if you’re into MG though!
  4. Red Rising by Pierce Brown

    1. This is one series I heard nothing but good things about, everyone seems to love Red Rising, and it was good, but I just didn’t click with it the way I wanted to. This one isn’t a never, but with new books coming out every month that I can’t wait to read I’ll probably never get around to reading the rest of this series. Unless you really think I should? Is book two way better than book one? Let me know in the comments if you think I should persevere! To be honest, I wonder if it was the narrator I didn’t mesh with, as I listened to the audiobook…
  5. Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

    1. Unfortunately, the reason I DNFed King of Thorns halfway through was because it was a library book and I had to return it as I’d already extended it to the full extent possible, plus we were moving house to a new city. Even though I loved the series up to that point, I wasn’t absorbed enough to find another copy of the book (as easy as that would have been with Amazon and the Book Depository!) so I just gave up on it. It’s a great read though, so check out my review of Prince of Thorns to see if you’d enjoy it.
  6. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

    1. I loved Me Before You, absolutely adored it and recommended it to everyone I knew, but to me it ended so well that I don’t need to continue reading the rest of the series. I’d be heartbroken if it didn’t live up to book one and disappointed me. Plus I read the first chapter of After You in a sampler and didn’t love it, so I decided to keep Me Before You as a standalone in my mind.

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Series I still plan to finish one day!

Half Bad by Sally Green Artemis Fowl

Cinder by Marissa Meyer Lyndsey's Book Blog The Cuckoo's Calling

  1. Half Bad by Sally Green

    1. This is one of my absolute favourite series, and I can’t bear for it to end! I haven’t bought Half Lost yet because I’m saving it, I really want to know how the series concludes but I know I’ll have the worst book hangover when it ends. One day, Nathan, one day…
  2. Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

    1. I loved every Artemis Fowl book I could get my hands on when I was in school. I’d go to the mobile library every month and grab the next one until I’d read them all. A few more have been released since then, but I’d moved onto other book series and left MG behind after school. I hope to read the rest one day, maybe when I’m reading with my son, I hope he’s a bookworm like me!
  3. Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

    1. I read Cinder last summer as part of a read-along with a Goodreads group, and I plan to continue the series soon, but I have a few books on my TBR before I pick up Scarlet and Cress.
  4. Cormoran Strike by Robert Galbraith/J.K. Rowling

    1. I actually listened to the audiobook of Career of Evil before reading either of the two previous books, because it was on an Audible Daily Deal. I didn’t realise it wasn’t book one until afterwards. I’ve watched the BBC adaptations now, but I’d still love to read the actual books, as I adore Rowling’s writing, Harry Potter is my ultimate favourite book series, and I imagine the TV series missed out a lot of detail from the books.

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So there you have it, ten book series I’ve started and not finished for various reasons. Let me know if you’ve finished any of these series, were they worth the time investment? Would you recommend I keep reading? Tell me your thoughts!

 

Lyndsey

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