Review: Throne of Glass (Maas)

AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
SERIES: Throne of Glass, book 1
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury USA Children’s
PUBLICATION DATE: August 7, 2012
ISBN: 9781599906959
PAGES: 416
SOURCE: publisher’s ARC
GENRE: fantasy
GIVE IT TO: anyone! Adults and teens will love this one!

SUMMARY: Eighteen-year old assassin Celaena Sardothien has been a slave in the treacherous mines of Endovier for the past year. Called to meet with the Crown Prince, Celaena is given one chance to earn her freedom: to travel to the glass castle to compete against 23 other criminals, warriors, and assassins in a series of tests and duals. With each test, one competitor will be eliminated, until four remain for the final duals. If she wins, she’ll earn the right to work as the king’s assassin for the next four years and, at the end of her contract, the chance to earn her own freedom.

REVIEW: What a treat! I loved every minute of Throne of Glass and turned the pages compulsively. The characters and plot are complex and unpredictable. I love how Celaena kicks major butt but still enjoys wearing pretty dresses. The love triangle is well-drawn, and both of Celaena’s romantic suitors are equally swoon-worthy. The ending tied up this book nicely while leaving plenty of unresolved conflicts open for the sequel. And I will be reading that sequel!

My only complaint about Throne of Glass (and the reason for the 4-star rating) is the number of similarities to The Hunger Games. I started to list the examples specifically (I found at least 9 major character/plot similarities), but I prefer to keep the focus of my review on the book’s excellence rather than how it compares to another title. Despite glaring similarities, Throne of Glass is a page-turner that I could not put down AT ALL.

THE BOTTOM LINE: Read it. One of my favorites of this year.


READALIKES: The Hunger Games, Divergent, Blood Red Road, Legend


  • Overall: 4/5
  • Creativity: 4/5
  • Characters: 5/5
  • Engrossing: 5/5
  • Writing: 5/5
  • Appeal to teens: 5/5
  • Appropriate length to tell the story: 5/5


  • Language: very mild; a** and bi*** are all I remember seeing, and that was only once or twice
  • Sexuality: mild-medium; some kissing; a few references to menstruation; male competitors taunt Celaena with crude sexual jokes, but even they are not too explicit
  • Violence: high–plenty of murder, blood, dismemberment, eyeball-eating, fighting
  • Drugs/Alcohol: mild–characters drink wine, references to hallucinogenic poisons

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