Reviews

Review: Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

I’m such a fan of this series! I didn’t enjoy Crown of Midnight as much as Throne of Glass but I’ll get into why down below! Celaena Sardothian is amazing, Chaol can leave, and someone needs to protect Dorian at all costs. As always, there are spoilers after the book description so if you haven’t read this instalment of the Throne of Glass series, go read it and come back!

17167166“A line that should never be crossed is about to be breached.

It puts this entire castle in jeopardy—and the life of your friend.”

From the throne of glass rules a king with a fist of iron and a soul as black as pitch. Assassin Celaena Sardothien won a brutal contest to become his Champion. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown. She hides her secret vigilantly; she knows that the man she serves is bent on evil.

Keeping up the deadly charade becomes increasingly difficult when Celaena realizes she is not the only one seeking justice. As she tries to untangle the mysteries buried deep within the glass castle, her closest relationships suffer. It seems no one is above questioning her allegiances—not the Crown Prince Dorian; not Chaol, the Captain of the Guard; not even her best friend, Nehemia, a foreign princess with a rebel heart.

Then one terrible night, the secrets they have all been keeping lead to an unspeakable tragedy. As Celaena’s world shatters, she will be forced to give up the very thing most precious to her and decide once and for all where her true loyalties lie… and whom she is ultimately willing to fight for.

 

We find Celaena, Dorian and Chaol a few months following the events of Throne of Glass. Celaena is working as the King of Adarlan’s assassin, retreating back into who she used to be. Chaol is increasingly concerned by her behaviour, and Dorian has no idea where any of them stand. Little do they know that Celaena is helping Adarlan’s targets escape and bringing the King false victims.

This book felt like it was going to set everything in motion, more so than Throne of Glass. And from the second that Chaol was kidnapped, and Archer explained it was being they thought he was going to kill Nehemia, I knew it was about to happen. I was crying while reading Celaena finding Nehemia’s body, and then cheering her on as she beat up Chaol.

It shocked me that Dorian would reveal his magic so early, stopping Celaena from killing Chaol. Obviously, I expected him to save Chaol, I just didn’t think he would use his magic. When Chaol put Celaena in the dungeons, the damage was done. I now and forever officially can’t stand him, and hope he suffers. To put someone who was a slave (in Endovier, no less) back into a cell, in a dark and dank place… He deserves to suffer.

I also think that killing Baba Yellowlegs is going to come back to haunt Celaena. The witch seemed old, and lethal. That, and she can’t be the only one. Additionally, we don’t know if she already sold her knowledge about Dorian and Celaena to someone, which could bite Celaena later on.

The thing that really excited me about this novel was the concept of Wyrdkeys. When Celaena develops her relationship with Mort, the magic doorknocker, and he confirms her fear (the King of Adarlan already has the one which was previously contained in Elena’s chamber), I saw the continued arc for the rest of the series. When Celaena opened the portal, it was solidly locked in. Seeing her with Nehemia and Elena made me cry. All Celaena deserves is happiness, and she is continually tortured and put through worse than she’s experienced before.

My anger at Chaol continued when he saw Celaena in her Fae form. What a jerk. All he can do is think about how holier-than-thou he is, and how she is “other.” Somebody needs to put that guy down. At that point, when she turned Fae, it was very obvious that Celaena’s past was going to greatly impact the direction of the series, and that she, Celaena, was likely not who she said she was. Chaol makes sure that the King of Adarlan sends her away, to Wendlyn, and Celaena gives him the clues needed to solve the secrets he’d been pondering since Throne of Glass: Celaena Sardothian is Aelin Ashryver Galathynius, lost Crown Princess of Terrasen.

 

This book was just as enthralling as the first. However, it lacked the action and ferocity that Throne of Glass did. Not to say that I didn’t like this book, I just feel as though it was a transition novel. And as the novel went on, the fact that it was a transition novel became ever more apparent. I feel as though book 3, Heir of Fire, will probably be my favourite, as I think Celaena/Aelin is about to go on a really heavy emotional journey (which I love).

Everything has now successfully been set up to carry this series into book three and beyond, and I have a couple of hopes:

  1. Celaena/ Aelin will get some of her emotional baggage out of the way. She’s in need of some emotional/spiritual healing in order to rise to who she was meant to be. The death of Nehemia is likely going to set her farther back than she was before, as well as Chaol’s views on her lifestyle and other form.
  2. Celaena/ Aelin will actually find a partner worthy of her. Someone who doesn’t judge her for who or what she is, and had to become in order to survive after the fall of her kingdom at the hands of Adarlan. I’m about to read The Assassin’s Blade, which I hope will give me some insight into this, but she needs an equal. Celaena/Aelin needs to meet the Rhys to her Feyre. It needs to happen.
  3. Chaol needs to go. I’m sick of his self-righteous crap. He’s always on her about how she’s killed people for profit. It’s not like he’s done any better! He’s been the head of enforcement for a man who murdered thousands on his way to conquering and becoming a tyrant. Chaol needs a reality check, and to leave.
  4. Dorian needs to expand his magic. I have really bad feelings about his story arc where his father is concerned and I would love for him to leave Adarlan. To join Celaena, wherever she is, and live freely. Be given the chance to love freely. Dorian needs an equal, and he and Celaena/Aelin are better off as friends. I genuinely think they’ll need each other more in the books to come.

I really did enjoy this book, but as it was a transition novel, I prefer Throne of Glass (so far). I’m so ready for book 3!

Rating: 4.8/5

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