Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Released: August 2012 (This was an ARC copy)
Plot: Celaena Sardothien is known as the world's greatest assassin. However after being captured and serving a year under hard labour and gruesome conditions that have killed most that are sent there Celaena is brought before the Crown Prince to compete against other criminals and assassins to become the Kings champion and also win back her freedom.
If she wins, after 4 years of servitude Celaena will get everything she's ever wanted.
Celaena accepts and travels with the prince and the Captain of the Guard back to the Glass castle and begins to train.
However when members of the competition begin to be found brutally murdered around the castle and Celaena is forced to investigate she discovers a destiny bigger than she ever imagined awaits her.
Good Points: Loved this book! You immediately from page one are drawn into this amazing world that Maas has created. The description of both the settings and each of the characters is just wonderful and I found myself smiling at the little details added within the book that make that big difference into allowing the reader to feel that little bit more for each character.
The overall pacing of the book worked really well and I didn't feel like the story was being rushed like some plots I have read before. Everything seemed well thought out and the details as I have already partially mentioned, especially things like weapons and strategic methods which really made you feel like the character you were reading was an assassin and not just some pretty girl who could use a knife.
The friendships as well, they weren't forced and the author gave them a cause that was the basis for the beginning of their friendship which then slowly grew into so much more.
When I finished the book I was literally shaking with excitement (no, it's not sad, I Just really like books) the author leaves you hanging for more and there is so many questions that she leaves unanswered like what happened to Celaena's parents? What happened to Sam? When will Celaena and Chaol realise that they are meant to be *swoon*! I am already expecting BIG things from this series and this amazing author.
Small note on the covers: I'm on the fence with the cover. I've seen both the American and the UK version and although both covers are beautiful I think I'm swaying a little more to the UK cover she just looks a little more hard-ass than the American cover. But then again... is that really Celeana's character. AGHHH I just don't know!!
Bad Points: I would have liked a little more of an insight to each of the tests that Celaena and the other competitors go through but other than that I didn't find much in the book to fault.
Oh, if I am being really really picky I think that within the middle of the book there could have been a little bit more action, but this kind of ties in with my first point. (Oh no, I feel so bad, honestly I did love this book!!!)
To Sum Up... Oh my word, how I loved this book. The writing reminded me of an early Maria V Snyder novel and the characters within the book were just so exciting to read about yet the author didn't give too many of their secrets away leaving me hanging for more which I loved!
Honestly, I cannot recommend this book to you enough, its just so... I can't even think of the right word to describe it, just read this book.
Also as an added note Bloomsbury have also released a series of novella's to accompany the book which give an insight into Celeana's past. Let's just say these are going straight to the top of my Summer Reading List :)