The Assassin and the Princess - Sarah J. Maas

”When you are ready – when you start to hear them crying out as well – then you will know why I came to you, and why I have stood by you, and will continue to watch over you, no matter how many times you shove me away.”

Fantasy is hit and miss for me. Sometimes fantasy has a tendency to just be a lot of traveling and camping. This is not that kind of fantasy story. It starts right away and something is always happening. I liked this book the most for the possibilities it has for future books in the series. There is a lot jammed into this first book of the series and so many hints as to where the story may go in the future. I picked up little trails of magic, mystery, political intrigue, deception, folklore, fae and a touch of destiny blended into Throne of Glass. This is a great first book for a series and I gave it 4 stars but it is probably closer to 3.5 I’m just rounding up because I love where the story could lead.

Celaena is an assassin, the best assassin in the world probably, but after her country was overthrown she was sent to work in the salt mines. She is given a choice, die in the mines or come and try to win a competition to be the Champion of the King she despises and have a chance at freedom in the future.

Chaol is the captain of the Royal Guard, Dorian is the Crowned Prince and son of the King who imprisoned Celaena. Dorian wants Celaena to be his champion in the competition for his father, Chaol just wants to make sure she doesn’t kill anyone along the way. But as both men get to know Celaena in different ways they each see that she is more than just an assassin and she might hold the key to both men’s hearts.

We all bear scars, Dorian. Mine just happen to be more visible than most…”

This started out Assassins meets survivor with a competition held every week and one competitor is eliminated to see who will be the best Champion for the King. But really you only get to see a few of the tests and then the story gets a little jumbley in the middle where there is a possible love triangle, the introduction of a lost magical religion, a Princess, a mythical beast and a quest given to Celaena by a long lost Queen. I was thoroughly entertained and even giggled a little when there was a Cinderella-esk moment at the ball. The story almost lost a bit of direction for a moment, but just a little one.

But then it all gets back on track as a few of the mysteries are solved as more come into play. The ending is action packed and fast paced. Celaena is easy to like and root for, even if sometimes she imagines how she will kill people. She is the assassin with a heart of gold. Celaena is strong and powerful but she also showed a softer side many times making her likable. She is perhaps a bit perfect for an assassin but I liked her. Between the two heroes of the story there is a love interest to like; The Pretty-Pampered-Persistent-Prince or the Heroic-Quixotic-Duty-bound Captain of the Guard. I myself am a Chaol girl all the way.

It was a sense of loyalty to his country that went beyond the man seated at the table. Far inside of her, she found a golden chain that bound them together

The evil King is evil and there is definitely a plot afoot involving magic. I was left wanting more at the end caring what happened to all the characters. Good first book in a series can’t wait to see what comes next.