Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The queen has returned.
Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she’s at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past…
She has embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen. But before she can reclaim her throne, she must fight.
She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die for her. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen’s triumphant return.
The fourth volume in the New York Times bestselling series continues Celaena’s epic journey and builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.
Beware spoilers ahead!
Back when this came out in September I was so excited to read it! But because I wanted to read other books first so I put this off. This is normal for me where as this series goes. I always end up reading it a year after the release date. I was honestly scared getting into this book. I thought that it would take me forever to finish it with the page number (648 pages). I was pretty impressed that I finished it within a week. I am also happy to report that this was much better than Heir of Fire!
The book begins a week after the ending of Heir of Fire. In Celeana (in the book she’s called Aelin) point of view. She’s gotten word that Arobynn is meeting with someone very important. While sitting there she spots Arobynn but is unable to see his client. Whoever the client is has a pretty cold looking female guard. She then spots Chaol and comes to the realization that Chaol is Arobynn’s client.
The female guard and Chaol leave meanwhile Celeana stalks after Arobynn. The two talk and he explains her that Aedion has gotten captured and is to be executed in three days on Dorian’s birthday party. He also tells her that he would like to make it up to her and offers to help her free Aedion in return for a Valg soldier. She says that she’ll have think about it. On her way out she kills a bunch of soldiers. Once she’s done she stalks off the go and find Chaol.
She runs into the female guard who leads her to Chaol. Celeana and Chaol talk about what has happened to them in the past few months. And both are shocked in each others revelations. In the end they get into an argument and blame each other for everything that has happened. They stalk off to their destinations.
Before I go into my likes and dislikes I have a personal suggestion for all of you. If you have not read The Assassins Blade then do so before you read this book. There are a lot of references from The Assassins Blade that you will not understand until you read it. Also there are some characters that come in for example Arobynn and Lysandra.
This book was much better than I expected it to be! I didn’t even mind the page number. It seemed reasonable considering the amount that happens in this book and the some of the twists that were explored.
There are also some new characters and old that come in this book. Kaltian, Perrington, and Roland make an appearance. Nesryn (the female guard), Vernon, and Elide are our new characters. At first I didn’t really like Nesryn but she started to grow on me. Elide was very interesting and her uncle Vernon was a creep.
I really liked this book and all the twists as well as the characters! I was happy to read about Celeana and Lysandra becoming friends. And Lysandra’s backstory was heart breaking. It was actually nice to read about female friendship. Asterin and Manon also start becoming closer which was also sweet. Asterin had a secret to share with Manon and it was really sad. I also liked the slow burn friendship that Manon and Elide formed.
I loved how Chaol was putting all of his focus to save people and find a way to help Dorian! Dorian and Chaol have always been close and it really shows in this book. If anything Chaol is a goal orientated person.
I didn’t mind the fight between Celeana and Chaol. I understood where they were both coming from. It did start to getting annoying at some point. But then they decided to put their differences aside and work on the task at hand. I was very happy when they made up and started to understand where the other person was coming from!
I finally understood Rowan and Celeana’s relationship. They work really well together and it was nice to read about their teamwork and how they wanted a romantic relationship. Rowan, Celeana, and Aedion start exploring their options when it comes to ruling. Rowan having a vast amount of knowledge had some pretty solid advice. It was lovely to read about them working together for their future!
Aedion and Celeana’s interactions were sweet! It was like reading about a brother and a sister. I also enjoyed reading about Rowan and Aedion’s friendship. They were practically brothers by the end of the book!
You do get to read Dorian’s point of views. They’re pretty short but they show you his constant struggle with the Valg Prince and the collar. He does try to not give in and listen to his father. In a sense it’s quite depressing to read about Dorian’s point of views.
There are several revelations with the King’s and Perrington’s plan, as well as some more information on the Valg’s. You do get introduced into another villain in this book. That is even more terrifying than the King.
I only had a few problems with this book. While I have learned to appreciate the authors planning skills and how intricate the plot is, it’s really hard to remember some of the names that were mentioned in Heir of Fire. Some of the new characters come out of nowhere. And I had a pretty hard time searching my memory for some of the names that looked familiar.
For awhile I was annoyed by Celeana’s attitude. I didn’t like it when she would start teasing someone rather than focusing on the task at hand. And while I understood that she was new to working with other people it was annoying to read about her trust issues and the fact that she kept so many secrets. By the end of the book this is resolved and it looks like she’ll actually start letting others in on her plans.
Overall this was a really good book! The reason it’s 4 stars and not 5 is because I love the plot of the series but I did not love this book. Still it was highly enjoyable! I actually missed reading this series. I would recommend this to fans of the series. You can easily finish this book because it’s really easy to read. For fans of complex fantasy.
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