Mar 28, 2014

Review: Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Title: Crown of Midnight
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Publishing Date: August 27, 2013
Pages/Format: 420, Hardcover

An assassin’s loyalties are always in doubt.
But her heart never wavers.

After a year of hard labor in the Salt Mines of Endovier, eighteen-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien has won the king's contest to become the new royal assassin. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown – a secret she hides from even her most intimate confidantes.

Keeping up the deadly charade—while pretending to do the king's bidding—will test her in frightening new ways, especially when she's given a task that could jeopardize everything she's come to care for. And there are far more dangerous forces gathering on the horizon
forces that threaten to destroy her entire world, and will surely force Celaena to make a choice. 

Where do the assassin’s loyalties lie, and who is she most willing to fight for?

Book in One Word: CANNOT.

*Note: This review would be waaay more flaily and gushy if I would've been a good person and written this review when I finished Crown of three months ago.

This (Smeagol's so-not-dramatic despair) is how I felt when I finished Crown of Midnight:

(Caption may or may not be how I feel dying waiting for Heir of Fire.)

I didn't looove Throne of Glass, but it reaaally made me want to read Crown of Midnight (which I'd heard was EPIC), and ohmygosh, Crown of Midnight made me like Throne of Glass more. Seriously, THIS BOOK. It's a feels-fest, swoonalicious, fantasmical adventure that usurps its predecessor and leaves you with an alcohol-free hangover.

One of my biggest issues with Throne of Glass was the use of exclamation points. They were, like, everywhere and drove me crazy. So I am very happy that the use of them was cut down here, because YAY. And really, I can't think of any complaints with this book (minus me wondering WHAT IS BEING DONE TO MY FEELS), so double yay!

Crown of Midnight follows Throne of Glass, where Celaena became (spoiler alert) the king's royal assassin and, in order to gain her freedom, must do his bidding. But Celaena isn't the most compliant of people, so she decides to twist the orders given to her by the king and be more in control herself. However, it's never that easy when evil is afoot and magic is brewing. Oh, and when there's sexual tension like whoa.

Celaena is an extremely badass protagonist whose bad side you DO NOT want to get on. Plus, she's an infamous assassin, so she'd kill you faster than you can blink. She's under a lot of pressure in this book, with trying to keep what she's been doing (or hasn't) a secret, attempting to figure out what on earth is going on in the castle made of glass and some heebie-jeebie things, and she's doesn't quite know where she stands in a kinda-sorta-not-really love triangle with Prince Dorian (ew) and Captain Chaol Westfall (yes yes yesss). New character Archer was simultaneously sketch and likeable (also, sucky job, dude), and I've always been kind of whatever about Celaena's BFF Nehemia. The king, as usual, can go die. Some oddball things happen with Dorian in this book, and I do like him...but he needs to back up/off of Celaena. Because I have a MAJOR SHIP, and it's between her and *siiigh* *googly eyes* *fluttery heart* CHAOOOL. I love him. I love him. I love him. I loved him in Throne of Glass (oh my gosh, that whole "get up" scene at the end?!), and that love just grows even more here. Chaol and Celaena (or, Chaol and ME) go together better than peanut butter and chocolate. Their sexual tension in this book KILLS ME, and it frustrates me, but my gosh is it AWESOME. (Major spoiler alert: My ship set sail! And it was beautiful. Then it anchored and I will go DOWN with this ship, but why, Sarah J. Maas, WHY? End spoiler.)

Also, if this helps at all, here's how I felt while reading:

Can we talk about the last half of this book? Because WHAT HAPPENED? It was all so beautiful, and then my heart broke, and then my feels were being pulled apart and I just COULD NOT and CANNOT and yes, I HAVE EMOTIONS. You know, I think a book is successful when it gives me a whirlwind of emotion-barfing, so well done, Crown of Midnight. No matter how you felt about Throne of Glass--seriously, even if you hated it--please read Crown of Midnight. TRUST ME. (And if you don't like it then I think you need to see a doctor.)

In short: READ THIS BOOK. (But read Throne of Glass first, obvi.) In the meantime, I'm going to wait for The Assassin's Blade to magically appear in my hands, and I'm going to impatiently wait for ALL THINGS Heir of Fire. (Yes, I would kill for that book, sorry not sorry.) Seriously, fantasy--something I haven't read much of--might be becoming my new favorite genre. Crown of Midnight has everything: suspense, tension, adventure, murder, mystery, romance, humor, magic, shockers and surprises, a ship that'd eat the Titanic for lunch, a swoony boy (who's mine, I'll fight you for him), a KILLER ending, and so much more, oh my! Really, NEED I say more?

Did I like it? OBVI.
Did I love it? YESSS.
Would I reread it? YES YES YES.
Would I purchase it? Thank the stars I already have a copy!
Who would I recommend it to? I will shove this book on everyone and everything.

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