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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Title: Crown of Midnight
Author: Sarah J. Maas
ISBN: 9781619630628
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Released: August 27, 2013
Series: Throne of Glass #2
Page #: 417
Source: ARC from the publisher

"From the throne of glass rules a king with an iron fist and a soul black as pitch. Assassin Celaena Sardothien won a brutal contest to become his Champion. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown - a secret she hides from even those closest to her. Keeping up the deadly charade becomes increasingly difficult as Celaena tries to untangle the mysteries buried within the glass castle, and she struggles to tell friend from foe. It seems even the Crown Prince, the Captain of the Guard, and her best friend - a foreign princess with a rebel heart - are not above questioning her allegiance. Then, one terrible night, the secrets they have all been keeping lead to a tragedy that shatters everything."
First Lines: (Quote from the ARC, subject to change)

"The shutters swinging in the storm winds were the only sign of her entry. No one had noticed her scaling the garden wall of the darkened manor house, and with the thunder and the gusting wind off the sea, no one heard her as she shimmied up the drainpipe, swung onto the windowsill, and slithered into the second-floor hallway." 
Page 1

I was a huge fan of Throne of Glass - action, romance, drama, castles and princes, lots of death... Obviously it was meant for me. Such a good book. And I'm excited to report that Crown of Midnight lives up to my excitement.

Celaena has won the contest to become the king's Champion. He's now sending her all over to kill his enemies. Unfortunately, she's not willing to carry any of those out. So when she comes back to the castle, she has to keep the truth from her closest friends. And the castle itself has even more secrets than she realized. Everyone seems to have power that they shouldn't have and the mysteries in the castle are building up.

I think Celaena is one of my favorite characters in YA Lit. She kicks so much ass, but she's super girly, too. There's something so refreshing about a woman who can live in all of the different worlds. There is a part of this story where Celaena goes full-on assassin. It's pretty magical. The hard core, almost not human, crazy woman. This second book just really goes into the psyche that allows her to do the things she has to do to survive.

You can't talk about her without mentioning the guys in this story. Dorian... becomes even more lovable and wonderful in this second book. And Chaol... even more sexy. Sigh. They both really cater to her in all of the ways she needs them. They also have new secrets themselves that create all sorts of rifts in the friendship/love triangle. Just so much drama! I can't imagine how things are going to turn out for the three of them! There is also a lot more of the varying points of view, but it becomes important because so much is going on.

I honestly can't even get started on the ending. Not only because I'm not going to spoil it for you, but also because of its epicness. I reread the last couple of chapters immediately after I finished them. There was so much to sift through and get excited about. Things are going to get crazy before the end of this series. And I cannot imagine how Celaena is going to come out on top.

There are lots of new mysteries in this one - the castle has even more hidden secrets that Celaena has to sniff out. Which means a new monster, too...  even more scary than before. I will say that I was a little confused by the riddle and such at first. Which is probably how it should be. But beyond that confusion, it was a cool the way those things came together.

I was really worried that this book might suffer from the sophomore slump, but it really came through strong. There were enough details in the beginning to remind me of the first book and it took off like a freight train. I feel like all YA lovers will get into these books, but especially fantasy fans. It's just so well done and I am definitely a fan of Sarah J. Maas. This book comes out next week, so definitely get your hands on it soon!
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