Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Review: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Book: Queen of Shadows
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #4
Genre: YA fantasy
Pages: 648
Release: September 1st, 2015

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.

Holy crap, I just finished Queen of Shadows. Like, I couldn't put it down. Every opportunity I had, I was reading this monster.

Celaena Sardothien has finally embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen, and is now heading back from Wendlyn to confront the king, whose loyalty he believes he has over her as his Champion. But much has changed since she's been back, and absolutely nothing is going to be easy.

First off--I was absolutely enthralled by all the amazing plots and schemes Aelin created and pulled off. She left both characters and readers guessing just what she had been up to the night before, who she had bribed, threatened or killed, what she had stolen, forged or traded, all to ensure that everything went according to plan the day it mattered. She manipulated all the outcomes so they would be in her favour, and my god, that is no small feat. Especially since she pulled that off for not one, not two, but multiple times in the book. Absolutely cunning and ruthless, and non-stop!

True to my predictions, Manon started developing in ways I absolutely loved. We got to see the merciless Blackbeak in the last book, but now Manon is finally beginning to recognize the errors in her ways and working--slowly--towards fixing it. She still has a lot to accomplish, but I have a feeling she's going to be absolutely amazing in the next books. I also definitely liked Aedion a lot more in this book--he had no mask on at any point, and was just pure loyalty to his queen 100% of the book. Makes me kind of jealous of their cousin relationship...

ROWAN!!! No spoilers, but I was devastated when Rowan was ordered to be left behind in Wendlyn in the last book. But I'm glad we got to see him and learn what he was up to. Though I was disappointed in the lack of romance in this book, as I was in the last book too. Oh well... And Dorian! Dorian, my poor baby! Huh, I never thought I'd say that. I definitely felt bad for him with his father, but this book took it to a completely new level of sympathy. Dorian! Dorian! The heartbreak!

We got a few new characters too. Nesryn, who at the beginning I was a bit hesitant on because of her seemingly indifferent nature but warmed up quickly, Lysandra, who was a fun offset from everyone with her apparent vainness but a different kind of sly cunning, and Elide, who I'm still not too certain about but I'm sure I'll like in the next books. All three played their own roles in putting up an excellent front, but hiding another (often deadlier) side to them. I'm really looking forward to seeing what becomes of those two in the next books. Heck yes to more strong female characters!

We also got to see a bit more into Aelin's past and her old assassin master. It was just a glimpse of the cruelties she endured that hardened her into the scary assassin we all know today, but it definitely poked interest in her training periods way back then. Hint: time to read Assassin's Blade for the full scoop! That way, one can understand just how devastating Aelin's actions were...

And that ending--that revelation! Things are way bigger than I ever thought they would be. And the evil runs way deeper too, in ways I hadn't expected. I'll be picking up Empire of Storms as soon as I can! I just hope there will finally be some proper romance stirring between the characters instead of just brooding and speculation. But what can I say, I'm a hopeless romantic haha. 


  1. On one hand, I'm super happy to see someone reading QoS...on the other hand I know you're now on the slippery slope that leads to EoS and AAAAAAAAH! At least you won't have too long to wait until the final book comes out.

    Unless of course, Sarah J Maas pushes its release date back again...

    1. Haha, that's so true! I'm actually trying very hard to draw out when I'll read EoS, since I've heard the ending will leave me in pieces and craving more. Hopefully I'll survive the wait and the book itself when I get to it!