Saturday, November 2, 2013

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J Maas

Published: August 2013
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Pages: 420
Copy Provided by: Library
Summary: Goodreads

An assassin’s loyalties are always in doubt.

But her heart never wavers.

After a year of hard labor in the Salt Mines of Endovier, eighteen-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien has won the king's contest to become the new royal assassin. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown – a secret she hides from even her most intimate confidantes.

Keeping up the deadly charade—while pretending to do the king's bidding—will test her in frightening new ways, especially when she's given a task that could jeopardize everything she's come to care for. And there are far more dangerous forces gathering on the horizon -- forces that threaten to destroy her entire world, and will surely force Celaena to make a choice. 

Where do the assassin’s loyalties lie, and who is she most willing to fight for?


I had Throne of Glass on my Kobo for AGES before I had time to read the book.  Please, do not make the same mistake.  This is a phenomenal series.  I was a little concerned about Crown of Midnight coming out.  I have extremely high expectations from Book #2 in a series.  If the first book was good enough to convince me to keep reading a series, book #2 must be outstanding for me to continue.  Last week I confessed to loving Fire with Fire, Book #2 in the Burn for Burn series.  Well, Crown of Midnight just stole the best Book 2 of 2013 for me.  Sarah J Maas packed this novel with all kinds of goodies.  Kind of like bashing open a pinata Celaena style!

Maas begins with a Celaena doing the King's dirty work in tracking down those who may be disloyal to the crown.  She certainly doesn't skimp on the details as the King's Champion tosses body parts to the king as proof her duties have been fulfilled.  This was an incredibly disturbing opening scene.  I should warn readers that this series has more bloodshed than other books I've reviewed.  Maas applies detailed scenes which may not be appropriate for a younger reading audience. It is important to remember, she IS an assassin.  Book #1 did not detail Celena's murderous tactics so explicitly as Crown of Midnight. 

It is hard to review this title without giving much away.  After reading about 40% of the book, I finally figured out Celaena's role and how epic this novel has the potential for.  In all of her life, Celaena has been searching and wandering the kingdom finding bits and pieces of herself.  She has many faces.  One minute she is a stealthy assassin, the next a beautiful dancing noblewoman.  One of the things I loved about this book is how Calaena has grown.  As a reader, you can see her slowly finding her place in this world.

A rumbling of war is starting to gain momentum throughout the land and forces are quietly gathering to usurp this evil King.  A King who has found a supernatural force to bend at his will and give him an advantage over neighboring countries.  Little do the rebels know that there are new players to challenge the King and his powers.  New players who have yet to unleash the magic within themselves.  

OK, so that's all I'm going to give you for now.  I LOVED this title.  In fact, I will probably buy it and loan it to all of my friends to read.  For now, I will give you my favorite line in the book - 

"Some things you hear with your ears.  Others you hear with your heart"

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