In Throne of Glass, our protagonist is Celaena Sardothien, Adarlan’s Assassin and current slave in the Endovier mines. Her life turns upside down when she’s dragged out of the mines and given a proposition — a proposition that could set her free, but at what cost?
To become the King’s Champion and earn her freedom by doing the work of the man who took everything from her, Celaena must first defeat her opponents. The King hosts a competition to find his Champion and those competing range from mercenaries to murderers to assassins. After spending a year in a slave camp, Celaena isn’t in the best shape but at least she’ll be trained by the Captain of the Guard and even supported by the Crown Prince. But the competition isn’t the only thing standing between Celaena and her freedom. Something else, something sinister, looms over the castle, and there are no guarantees she’ll figure it out before it’s too late.
This book drew me in immediately with its strong characters. It doesn’t take many chapters (or even pages) to get a grasp of who Celaena is at that point of the book. Conflicted, full of anger and desperately lost. One thing I particularly enjoyed was the way we received glimpses into her thoughts. The story is in third person but at times I felt I was right there in her head. When you’re a famous assassin who’s been to a slave camp, you are bound to notice things others wouldn’t… such as how easily you could disarm all the people around you.
But Celaena isn’t alone. Chaol, the Captain of the Guard, doesn’t find her trustworthy but it’s his job to train her, to make sure she wins. He won’t allow Celaena out of his sight, knowing her past and what she’s capable of, but spending that much time gives them something else too. A chance to get to know each other.
Dorian Havilliard, the Crown Prince who insisted on making a notorious assassin his Champion, knows to keep his distance from the girl who could kill her with her bare hands. He knows he has a duty to the throne, no matter how thorny his relationship is with the King. As time passes, he recognizes something in Celaena. Could it be she’s more than just a heartless monster?
The story in the book carried well through the book. I knew it was a series before I started reading so I expected some sort of “cliffhanger” but even though there were questions left unanswered, Throne of Glass felt like a complete novel. I was left wanting more but not disappointed or feeling like I never got to the end.
There was intrigue, mysteries, amazing characters, solid plot… All in all everything I’m looking for in a fantasy novel, and I’ll definitely read the next books in the series as well.