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Sunday, March 13, 2016

Book Review: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass #4
Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Publication.Date:September 1, 2015
Pages:648 (hardcover)
Published By:  Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Website:Sarah J. Maas

Queen of Shadows on Goodreads
My review copy:

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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.


She could forgive the girl who had needed a captain of the guard to offer stability after a year in hell; forgive the girl who had needed a captain as her champion.

But was her own champion now. And she would not add another name of her beloved dead to her flesh.
"Why are you crying?" he asked, trying to push her back far enough to read her face again.

But she held on to him, so fiercely she could feel the weapons beneted his clothes. It would all be fine, even if it went to hell, so long as he was with her. "I'm crying," she sniffled, "because you smell so rutting bad my eyes are watering."

Rowan let out a roar of laughter that made the vermin in alley go silent. She at last pulled away, flashing a grin. "Bathing isn't an option for a stowaway," he said, releasing her only to flick her nose.
There she was, the queen looking out at him, a hint of the ruler she was becoming. And it knocked the breath out of him, because it made him feel so strangely young - when she now seemed so old. "What if we go on," he said, "only to more pain and despair? What if we go on, only to find a horrible end waiting for us?"

Aelin looked northward, as if she could see all the way to Terrasen. "Then it is not the end."

Now that Aelin has accepted she's, well, Aelin shit is about to go down. After training with Rowan and embracing her Fae heritage, Aelin is ready to come back and claim what is hers. Of course, she's going to take down a few people on her way back to her throne. And the two on top of her list? Arobynn Hamel and the King of Adarlan.

Upon her return to Adarlan, Aelin reconnects with Chaol and his rebel forces, most importantly Nesryn Faliq. I love that Sarah made the relationship between these two a bit tense after the events of Heir of Fire. They've both changed in ways they couldn't have imagined and their relationship is forced to change along with their individual changes. After a few begrudging conversations and  a rather interesting events, they join forces to save Aedion and Dorian and bring down the current regime. Along with an unlikely ally (a plot twist that I absolutely ADORE), Aelin and Company keep those pages turning.

Sarah introduces a new romance, which is top cute a full of potential, and the relationship between Aelin and Rowan continues to rise in OTP levels that make you want to just smash their faces together - or at least lock them in a room and runaway because these two are scary powerful, even without their Fae powers.

Outside of Adarlan, Manon is making headway into becoming her own person and not her grandmother's pawn. In the effort of full disclosure, Manon wasn't my favorite. I understand her importance, but even during Heir of Fire, I found myself rushing through her chapters to get back to Aelin. However, even though it took me some time, I eventually became to truly appreciate Manon's story line. I know things are going to come to ahead with her and I cannot wait to see her kick some serious ass.

Even at 648 pages, Queen of Shadows doesn't read as such. That's one of the things I so love about Sarah's writing. Her novels don't feel long. They're fast paced and engrossing. Even with multiple narrators, which I know can throw people off, she seamlessly jumps between these characters without a second thought.

Queen of Shadows is full of curve balls, knowledge bombs, and jaw dropping moments. I'm equally nervous and excited to see what Sarah has in store for her next two books in this series, because if they're anything like this novel we are in for one crazy ride.

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