Summary from Audible:
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?
The best-selling series that has captured listeners all over the world reaches new heights in this sequel to the New York Times best-selling Crown of Midnight. Packed with heart-pounding action, fierce new characters, and swoon-worthy romance, this third book will enthrall listeners from start to finish.
First, let me warn you. Just like the rest of the series, I listened to this entire thing on audio. I will most likely spell somethings wrong because how it sounds and how it’s spelled are two very different things. I’m going to search the interwebs for the correct spellings, but please forgive me if I get them wrong.
This installment of the Throne Of Glass series introduces us to several new characters. We get Aedion, Manon, Maeve, and Sorsha (spelling?) just to name a few. This was very disorienting in the beginning. For the first third of this book, I really didn’t care about them at all. Anytime we’d switch away from Celaena or Chaol or Dorian to one of the newer perspectives, I’d have a difficult refraining from fast-forwarding through them. I honestly didn’t care about them, especially Manon. I genuinely did not care about her struggles with the other witches and winning the mount she wanted and pleasing her grandmother. I didn’t care at all. We got about halfway through before I even started being slightly interested in her perspective. By the end, I still didn’t particularly care about her at the end, but I was fascinated with the relationship between rider and mount.
I did enjoy seeing more of Dorian and Chaol without Celaena’s biased. I really enjoy both characters. I still haven’t picked a team. I know it’s shameful, but I like both characters. I think both have merits and both can fit Celaena. Speaking of the love triangle, can I bitch about the added points? Instead of taking this book to really hammer down who Celaena is destined for, Maas adds TWO MORE possible love interests. We get nothing on the front of Chaol and Dorian, though we all know she is swayed more towards the Chaol side at this point, instead watching her spend time the new love interest Rowan. Now don’t get me wrong, I like Rowan. He is a very interesting and complex and I want to learn more about him, but I’d rather see him stay in a friendship role. Plus, I’m not a big fan of love pentagons. Aedion is the final point and while we don’t get any time with him and Celaena together as adults, it’s heavily implied that he has more than just fond attachments to her. I liked him quite a bit as well, but I just want to see him stay in the distant cousin role. We have no need for additional love interests.
This book definitely measures up to it’s predecessors, though it’s actually my least favorite book of the series. I still really loved it, I mean, I gave it 5 stars, but I enjoyed TOG and COM a bit more. I think it’s mostly because the first third of this is really slow. TOG and COM were both very fast-pasted and addictive. The beginning of HOF was missing that quality. Don’t worry, Maas breaks it out once you get about a third of the way through and makes up for it completely. The last 100 pages or so were especially addictive.
Despite the slow start and the death, this is still a fantastic read. Maas definitely does YA fantasy in a way that everyone can enjoy it. Fantasy can be a daunting thing for people who don’t normally read it, but Maas knows just how to break it down and make it easy to digest. This is no exception. It’s intense and ends on a rather upsetting cliffhanger, so I need the next one….like now.
As with the rest of this series, Elizabeth Evans does an amazing job of bringing Maas’ world to life. I wholeheartedly enjoyed her performance. She has become one of my favorite narrators. Doesn’t that say it all?
****Thank you to Esther Bochner at Audible for providing me with an audio copy in exchange for an honest review****