Blurb: Celaena has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak—but at an unspeakable cost. Now, she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth . . . a truth about her heritage that could change her life—and her future—forever. Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. Will Celaena find the strength to not only fight her inner demons, but to take on the evil that is about to be unleashed?
Thoughts: First of all, holy crap. What a book. I’m so pumped that there’s going to be three more books in this series because I can not get enough of it right now. I loved this book and Maas beautifully set up the plot for her next novel in this book.Okay, enough fangirling, let’s talk about this book.
We meet a bunch of new characters in this sequel and I was surprised by all of them. First of all, we have all the witch chapters following Manon’s point of view and her Thirteen. I didn’t particularly like Manon in the beginning, and I didn’t want to because I know that her and Celaena are going to meet and neither of them are going to walk away unharmed. However, she really began to grow on me. I loved the whole aspect about her not being born with a soul or a heart and seeing Manon develop these feelings, especially with Abraxos. The whole mini plot line with Abraxos, him killing Titus and then recovering enough strength to do the Crossing was so great. I couldn’t stop picturing the Wyverns as dragons, even though I know they’re different. Then, they became like mini dragons and the whole scene with Abraxos sniffing the flowers, only eating the goat meat, made them seem awfully cartoony. So, now the Wyverns are miniature, cartoon dragons.
One of our other new characters was Rowan. He was such an ass in the beginning, I didn’t understand why people liked him so much. Watching both Celaena and Rowan grow throughout Celaena’s training was so wonderful, especially seeing Celaena gain so much control over her magic. Much like Manon, Rowan really began to grow on me to more we got to know his character. I felt as if I really started to like him during the Skinwalker attack, he was so different then in training and that was the first time when Celaena kind of had control over her magic (at least until she burned the Skinwalkers and the surrounding area to ash.) I also loved the scene where Rowan makes the blood oath the Celaena, that was very touching.
Now we have the whole Sorscha/Dorian deal. I’m glad that Dorian found somebody that he could talk to and trust since he thought he couldn’t trust Chaol and Celaena had left for Wendlyn. However, there was always something about Sorscha that confused me; why was she so willing to help hide Dorian’s secret about his magic? She never told anybody and it didn’t surprise me that she was a spy in the end. I was reading the end of the book in class (which wasn’t a good idea) and I had this idea in the back of my mind the the King wouldn’t really kill Sorscha, maybe he’d keep her alive in the prison just to torture Dorian. When she was killed, I had let out a little gasp and everyone in the (silent) room turned to look at me, but it was worth it.
All of the big fight scenes were so beautifully done, in fact a lot of scenes were so well done I could rant about them forever, but let’s talk about the fight scenes. When Celaena was fighting the Valg princes and had stepped out of the barrier, I was so confident that she would be able to fight them because she’s faced them before. Seeing Celaena’s true power when the the Fae were defending the fortress was a little scary, but it showed us how much she’s grown in those months of training with Rowan. I definitely think that the Valg princes will be back in the next novel, especially that the King snapped that collar onto Dorian. There’s going to be some huge war between Terrasen and Adarlan and it’s going to come down to Dorian and Celaena fighting each other.
Romantically, I don’t really have a side. I would much prefer Rowan and Celaena to stay the good friends that they are, just because I don’t think they would work well as a couple. They act too much like siblings to be a couple. However, I still don’t really like Celaena and Dorian together because now I definitely don’t trust Dorian with that collar thing around his neck. My gut feeling is to not trust Dorian since he’s the King’s son. Although, he definitely rebelled against his father in this book so we’ll see. I’m still kind of a Chaolaena shipper, but it’s not as strong as it was in the previous two books and I doubt it will happen since Celaena took her amethyst ring off at the end.
So, overall I loved this book even though it was a bit slow moving at the beginning. It has great new characters, an intriguing plot, a new set up for the upcoming novels, awesome battle/action scenes and it makes me want the next book so bad. If you still haven’t picked up this series, I highly recommend it if you’re in the mood for a kick ass fantasy series.