- Series: Throne of Glass (Book 4)
- Paperback: 672 pages
- Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens; Reprint edition (September 6, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1619636069
- ISBN-13: 978-1619636064
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.7 x 8.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5,206 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,864 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass) Paperback – September 6, 2016
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“Character motivations and interactions. . . are always nuanced and on point, especially as Aelin's growing maturity offers her new perspectives on old acquaintances. . . Impossible to put down.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“Fans of the high-fantasy series likely won't mind the protracted story at all, packed as it is with brooding glances, simmering sexual tension, twisty plot turns, lush world building, and snarky banter. . . The final chapters of this installment promise more epic adventures and badder bad guys to defeat in forthcoming volumes.” ―Booklist
“Praise for the New York Times bestselling series” ―:
“Heir of Fire” ―:
“A USA Today bestseller” ―:
“I was afraid to put the book down!” ―New York Times bestselling author Tamora Pierce
“Readers will devour Maas's latest entry…A must-purchase.” ―School Library Journal
“Tension snowballs into devastating twists and an absolutely riveting ending… Will leave readers ravenous for more.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“Crown of Midnight” ―:
“A New York Times and USA Today bestseller” ―:
“An epic fantasy readers will immerse themselves in and never want to leave.” ―Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“Series fans will be satisfied not only by the intricate plot, dishy romance, and rich world building but they will be thrilled by the prospect of deepening adventures in the next volume.” ―Booklist
“Throne of Glass” ―:
“A Kirkus Best Teen Book of 2012, Amazon.com Best Book of 2012, YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults, and MTV Hollywood Crush Best YA Book of 2012 Nominee” ―:
“A thrilling read.” ―Publisher's Weekly, Starred Review
“A must-read for lovers of epic fantasy and fairy tales.” ―USA Today
“A welcome breath of fresh air to the oft-neglected epic fantasy field.” ―Tor.com
“Fans of Tamora Pierce and George R.R. Martin, pick up this book!” ―RT Book Reviews
About the Author
Sarah J. Maas is the #1 New York Times and internationally bestselling author of the Throne of Glass series, as well as the Court of Thorns and Roses series. Her books are published in over thirty-six languages. A New York native, Sarah lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and dog.
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****This review will contain spoilers from Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight.****
So if you’ve read Throne of Glass, you know what Celaena is up to. She won the championship and is the King’s ultimate weapon. She can’t seem to decide between Chaol or Dorian (love triangles, yay). The ghost of Queen Elain keeps bugging her to change the world (which Celaena has no interest in), and you have Nehemiah off doing her thing.
So, let’s fast forward a bit through the book. When it comes to heroes, Celaena is literally the worst one to exist. She has no interest in saving anyone. She wants clothes, pretty things, food, and her freedom. Oh, and a hot guy to date. She’s selfish and petty (will talk about more of that later), and doesn’t really care about anyone.
Pros: Maas has amazing writing skills. I love the imagery. I love the sass. I love the intricacy of the series as a whole–especially when it comes to things that are mentioned and happen in CoM and ToG that are huge parts later on in the series.
Cons: So, originally when reading all of these, I loved this book. Now, I’m meh on it. It’s OK. The writing is great, as is the plot, but the problem is Celaena. Granted, it makes sense why she acts the way she does. She’s been a pampered brat most of her life and thinks the world revolves around her simply because she went through awful things. She is too quick to turn on friends when they try to do something she doesn’t like.
Chaol and Celaena were literally the cutest thing ever. I wasn’t overly fond of them together, but they were cute. When Nehemiah dies and Celaena attacks Chaol, I was really upset this time. Chaol, yes, messed up. But Celaena attacks him, this man she had been sleeping with and claimed to love, and tries to kill him. Chaol shuts down completely, and it hurts when he cries. I rarely cry, but reading over that scene where he does had me tearing up.
It bothers me that the whole fandom and the series itself looks at Chaol as though he started something, yet Celaena chose later in the book when she wants to acknowledge him as a person or blame him for everything. As a soldier, of course he would obey the commands of his liege lord over his girlfriend. Also, it wasn’t Chaol who kidnapped himself and made Celaena not be in the castle when Nehemiah was killed, but Nehemiah. If Celaena wanted someone to blame, she should have blamed Nehemiah for not telling her the plan (kinda the point of what Nehemiah did, though), and she should have gone after Archer and Grave and forgiven Chaol. But she didn’t. She blamed him and moped about it for almost a book and a half.
I don’t know, but I feel like with this reread of the series, I’m seeing more into Celaena’s personality, and I don’t like how self-centered she is and how secretive she is. She’s destroying herself by not saying anything to anyone.
This book. This series. These characters. THIS AUTHOR.
We are in full on queen mode in Queen of Shadows, obviously. Hence the title. Calaena shows up some, for the sake of appearances, but she has completely accepted her heritage and now goes by Aelin. She's still the intense, no nonsense, scary-as-heck chick we've all grown to know and love, but there's tons more to her character that we only got a glimpse of in Heir of Fire. She's ready to go and taking names. Like literally taking names as she crosses the ocean back to Adarlan. Her cockiness and downright meanness in the first two books really rubbed me the wrong way at times. You can't help but to be drawn to her character, but the things she said and did were.. disturbing, to say the least. And she still has that fire, but there is so much more depth to her now that she has accepted who she truly is and, in the process, is opening her heart again to the people she loves instead of shutting them out and running off of pure rage. Her complexity makes her one of the best female protagonists I've ever read.
We start out back in Rifthold, and at this point everything is up in the air. We know why she's there and who she's after, but how she's going to go about doing this is anyone's guess. I will say this, A LOT gets resolved in this book. Granted, there are plenty of other monumental surprises that step into take their place, but I was surprised by how many plot lines got tied up. I was expecting two for sure, but the third one threw me for a complete loop. If anyone says they predicted that to happen, they are a liar. And my goodness, these last two books are going to be downright scary. I was on pins and needles the entire time. You thought present Erilea was bad.. it's about to get wayyyy worse.
And as for the book being 650 pages.. Why are people upset about this?! I say, the more the better!
Now onto the other characters, because there are quite a few POVs in this book...
I've always been partial to Dorian, so being in his POV was absolute torture. The ending of HoF about sent me over the edge and I didn't even want to think about what what was going to happen in this book. I was a nervous wreck. And then PAGE ONE happens. Like, literally as soon as I open the book, there it is. Chapter One. Pretty sure my heart dropped into my stomach. And then every time we were back in his POV after that. I did not handle it well. I hate Valg demons.
And while I've never particularly liked Chaol's character (I know I'm in the minority here), he sort of takes on a whole new persona in QoS. Maybe it's the fact of what all he's given up and how he sees the world changing that makes him into the person he's become. He's always seemed to me like a guy who is scared of change, and has an incredible ability to pick and choose which parts of people to accept. And I'm not just talking about Aelin, but also the king and Dorian. He sees only what he wants to see, and if he doesn't understand it or like it, he just shuts it out completely. He doesn't like magic. He's scared of it. He's also very scared of what will happen if people with magic have free reign again. We've known this since Crown of Midnight so I'm not sure why his continuing dislike of it surprises anyone. Chao is not going to be the same person he's been for the first three books. His life has completely change, so while his character is infuriating to me at times, he's still a vital part of this story and I don't dislike him. His character, by the end of this book, grows leaps and bounds and I was glad to see it happen.
Now for Rowan. Ah, Rowan. I still don't know how Sarah Maas did it. She gave us Dorian and Chaol in the first two books and everyone was on their respective team. Then in one book, ONE BOOK, she made me toss all my loyalties aside fall in love with Rowan's character. How anyone can not like him is beyond me. He's like the male version of Aelin, and the interaction between those two are some of the best dialogue of the book and they just work very well together. With his character showing up in Rifthold, you see him having to adjust to life without magic. And as the bond between them grows, you see different, softer sides of the Fae warrior. I love him.
We didn't get too much from Aedion in this book apart from the first few chapters as he awaits his execution. His reunion with Aelin was everything I thought it would be.. I ain't ashamed to say I may have teared up a bit. They are the only bit of family each other has left and they totally had their moment. It was perfect.
Manon's POV scares me. (Besides Abraxos, because who doesn't love Abraxos?) She is dark and wicked and infuriatingly loyal to that wretched grandmother of hers. I know she's redeemable, but for a good chunk of the book I was hoping Asterin would just overthrow her and become the new heir.. assuming that's how it works. Which it probably doesn't. BUT Manon has some feels going on that she's not even aware of and I think in this next book she will most definitely have to make a choice of which side she is on. It very well could've happened in this book, but we have no resolution where this is concerned. And that scene with Aelin.. on the edge of your seat stuff right there. I'm not sure how I feel about some illusions of her character, but I'm not completely against her playing an even bigger role in the last two books.
I'm not even going to spend time on Arobynn because I hate him. But some of the other characters, I loved. Calaena has been surrounded by a troupe of men for far too long and it's about time the women came out to play and they did not disappoint! Lysandra, wow. Love her. So much more to her character than meets the eye, and her and Aelin's relationship was refreshing. Nesryn, even though we don't get anything from her perspective is also a pretty bad chick and helping Chaol with the rebels. It's safe to say, unless you're in denial, you will know why she's there from the get go. And lastly, Elide, Lady Marion's daughter, is brought into the picture and hanging with the witches, no less. Very much excited about what role she will be playing in the future. She's got some surprises in store, I think.
For the most part, the book felt like long build-ups. Part one was a build-up and it was resolved. Part two also felt like a build-up, and it wasn't as cleanly resolved as the first. I still have some lingering questions about that. Prepare yourselves for part two. Big time game changer coming your way.
AllI can say, is that if you truly love this series, and I mean disregard the romances and all that, and are in love with the story, this book will not disappoint.
Some spoilers ahead...
I'm going to rant just for a sec. I keep seeing some low to mid reviews on this book and they all have one thing in common: Chaol Westfall. I know people shipped Calaena and Chaol really hard, but being this distraught over the downfall of their romantic relationship does a disservice to this series. And I can say that because I am completely Team Dorian and have had to put up with Chaol from day on. Not to mention Sorscha from HoF. Was not a fan of that little surprise. Never once have I given these books bad reviews simply because things weren't happening the way I wanted them to. If the romance aspect is your biggest concern, go read romance novels. The growth and maturity of the characters is wonderful, and I'm glad that Maas is not scared to kill off characters we love or sever relationships if it means progressing the story to where it needs to go. I'm completely okay with the direction Aelin and Rowan are headed because they work. Even if in my heart of hearts I had this small hope of King Dorian and Queen Aelin falling love... yada yada yada... Rowan is the dude and I'm okay with that. So if all you're going to do is get on here and rant about, "I want the old Calaena back," "Maas completely ruined Chaol's character," "These books are too long," Guess what? Go read another series! Or some watered down YA novel where everything works out just as it should in the end.
These books are gold. Sarah Maas is a genius. And you can't convince me otherwise.