Monday, September 23, 2013
"Crown of Midnight" by Sarah J. Maas
From Goodreads: "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?"
While I was not a huge fan of the first book in the series (a fan, rather than a FAN), I was still extremely excited to read this book because of both the world and the cast of characters that Sarah crafted, quite unlike any I have encountered in YA before. Within only a few pages of this book, I knew that it was not only much, much better than the first, Sarah truly finding her stride as an author, but one of the best books that I have read this year (which I truly have to thank Sarah for- it has been AGES since I truly loved a book, she was able to crack through where few authors have been able to).
While in the first book I did find myself growing somewhat frustrated by HOW MUCH there was going on in it, in this book, it was the icing on top of the cake for me. I LOVED piecing together all of the various storylines and admittedly gasped aloud a number of times when Sarah entirely twisted the plot on its head.
Another successful component of this book, in my opinion, was the romance. As anyone who knows me knows, I LOVE love- and this book has perchance one of the best love stories that I have read in YA. Ever. While on the one hand I hated how long drawn-out the romance aspect of it was (I legitimately texted one of my fellow reviewer friends with "WHY WON'T THEY KISS ALREADY?"), on the other hand, I do think that that was for the best- that when that aspect of the storyline finally came to fruition, that it made all of the FEELS cometh forth.
The last component of this book that made me fall head over heels for it was the ending- while the ending is technically wrapped up in its entirety, you can't help but feel the need to get your hands on the next book as soon as humanly possible- it has the feel of the cliffhanger ending, without actually being a cliffhanger. (That being said, as a side note, I find myself growing more and more scared about the next book because I can't wonder if Sarah will simultaneously tell two different storylines or only one- in only telling one, one of my most favourite aspects will be lost).
All in all, Sarah J. Maas is an evil, evil person- something which I'm sure that she revels in. As mentioned, this book is one of the best books that I have read this year and one that I know that I will pick up time and time again. I HIGHLY recommend this book to all YA readers- from those seasoned YA fantasy fans to those newly minted.
I received this book from the publisher to read and honestly review. I was not compensated in any way for said review.