My rating: 2 out of 5 stars
When this book first came out, actually even before it was officially released, I was seeing it mentioned on just about every blog I went to. So I decided to take the leap and read it as well. I managed to get my hands on an advanced copy for review and shortly after that I started to read it.
While the beginning of the book didn’t instantly pull me fully into the story, it also didn’t send me running into the opposite direction. I was intrigued as to what would happen next and liked the bit of background added right away. Not enough to give everything away but a good amount to make me want to continue to learn more about the characters past and how it would affect them in the future. The descriptions were also enjoyable and flowed in well with the initial introduction of the world and the main character Celaena. One thing I liked, was how in all the initial interactions between the guards, the prince and a few other character and Celaena, was how she was constantly analyzing how many moves or how many seconds it would take her to disarm or kill them. It showed that even after a year of being locked away in a mine she had not lost any of her assassin senses or abilities.
However it was after this initial chapter, perhaps the first few chapters, that I found myself starting to dislike the book. What had started out to be a strong book with great potential quickly turned into a book I no longer wished to read. But I continued on with it, feeling that perhaps it was just a lull in the story and things would pick up again and return to the level where it had started at. I was wrong, so very wrong. I began to dislike Celaena more and more with each chapter. Things just seemed way too obvious, the flow went to shit and all the other characters introduced seemed flat and not to add much, if anything, to the story itself. Hell I’ve forgotten nearly all the other characters names by now because I felt such a small connection to them and the story.
The love triangle made me shudder. I find it so annoying how far too many Young Adult books feel the need to toss in a love triangle just to keep things “interesting”. Well here’s a news flash, they aren’t interesting, they are repetitive, annoying and downright silly, at least that’s how I feel about them.. Seeing even the vaguest beginning of a love triangle made it bad, but as it became more and more evident it made me want to set the book down. But once again I decided to stick with it and did my best to ignore the unpleasant feeling it gave me.
Eventually though I had enough of the book and just needed to stop. When there was about 20-30% of the book left I gave up. I just couldn’t bring myself to read anymore. I had planned on simply abandoning the book as it was and never finish it. But after many, many months (read that as a year and a half) I finally decided that I would suck it up and read that last bit of the book, mostly because having unfinished books really bothers me. I must say, I’m glad to have finished it, not because I enjoyed the ending but because it meant I had made it to the end and I could finally delete it from my Kindle.
While I didn’t hate the entire book, I did find the majority of it to be unappealing. It felt like I was reading nearly any other Young Adult book out there with all it’s similarities to things that appear in far too many books from that genre. I know there are a lot of people out there who absolutely loved this book but I was not one of them. It had potential to start with and then just burned and died. I honestly would not recommend this book, nor will I be continuing on with this series either, which is apparently going to be six books long (not including all the novellas) – a fact that makes me shake my head. I also don’t see myself reading anything else by this author. It’s a shame it didn’t live up to the hype but not every book can.