Rachael, Mabel and Emma all pointed me towards these books -- thank you! I took my time getting to them, I realise...but you know what? It's so nice to start a series that is already all out, now and then! So nice. I love turning the last page of one installment only to grip the first of a subsequent in the next breath.
- Offers a very interesting protagonist. Being BA isn't new, but cocky chattiness isn't something I find in all YA.
- Reads like a guilty pleasure-read. Romance + Action. It isn't high art, but it is the kind of thing I devour during a bout of sickness in our household. I ate up the romance big time.
- As a bonus, the sexual references are not vulgar. Thank you.
- The ruddy names! Why oh WHY must you do this to me!? I forgive, but golly...so many names and they're similar. I get that it's nice for them to sound like they all belong to the same world...but making them all rhyme or end the same...and have lots of syllables...it's not my favourite approach.
- There's some swearing.
- There's a lot of violence.
- It is like a mixture of The Selection and Prodigy...with a dash of Reboot.
Just as good.
Heir of Fire (3)
- I was amazed by how much I want things from the love story. I cared deeply. It is hard to make the relationship journeys with the characters -- it is intense!
- I wasn't totally sold on a new arc being woven into the story (with new characters' perspectives), but it really grew on me once (spoiler coming) dragons got involved.
- I feel like Maas consciously ramps up the fantasy elements in this book...and by the end, I was happy that had happened. She also upped the epic, and I reluctantly then wholly embraced the shift. This book's reach is further within the world and that ends up being a great thing.
- Things get even more gruesome in this book and the next.
- Maas has a serious knack for creating characters I don't think I can ever like...and then they grow on me again and again. Except Sorscha. Never her. Sorry, Sorch.
Queen of Shadows (4)
- I felt like the writing matured with this book.
- The witches are like a separate book. Their episodes are pretty good but sometimes I wasn't excited about the timing of being pulled there.
- This book is much more liberal with with swearing. It doesn't get crazy, but it is frequent enough that it took me out of the story. A few curses here and there were kind of funny in the medieval-feel fantasy of the earlier books, but in this one it interrupts with a contemporary edge I didn't like.
- The romance was torture.
Altogether: Pretty satisfying up to this point.
Assassin's Blade (0.1-0.5 Prequel Novella Anthology)
- Read after the series proper and I'm glad I did. Although these chronologically come earlier, and contain content that might be nice to know during the later books...I don't think the novellas could have won me over the way Throne of Glass did. They're arguably miss-able...although I've read some fans felt they greatly enriched their understanding of Celaena. For me she was a jerk in these books...which reflects her growth, sure...but she's such a jerk. She does pull off some cool stunts, but we've had plenty of allusions to these in the later novels and I've imagined equal to what was filled in for me here. Sam didn't live up to the hype. If you've finished 1-4 and pine for more, they're like Special Features for those hungry for more...so there's that. I felt done after 4. If I had to recommend a best reading order, it would be reading 1, then the Novellas, then finishing series 2-4.
- These had a neat and clean finish.