This post is full of spoilers for Sarah J. Maas’ fourth book in the Throne of Glass series: Queen of Shadows. If you haven’t read this book or the three before it I recommend not reading this post and coming back later! BUT, if you’ve read Heir of Fire you can read my non-spoiler review of Queen of Shadows HERE.
Published: September 1st 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Length: 648 pages
Where I got it: LIbrary!
Why I got it: It’s my favourite YA series of all time. Why wouldn’t I get it?
Summary from Goodreads:
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 contrinues Celaena’s epic journey and builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.
So I don’t actually have a review for you this week but something a little different instead. Somehow, over the summer, I’ve started books and I’ve forgotten about books and I got distracted with other books and now my currently reading shelf on Goodreads is a mess.. Literally. SO this week I bring to you some snippets on what I’m reading, how I feel about it and so on. Ahh, where do I even begin?
Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
Yes! I am finally reading the fourth book in my favourite YA series of all time. I don’t believe this book needs and introduction because of how much buzz all of Sarah J. Maas’ books get so let’s just get into it. (No spoilers!) I am absolutely loving this book, as you can imagine! Sarah J. Maas is a queen herself so I wouldn’t expect anything less from her. It’s absolutely massive compared to the others but I am so so glad that nothing has been rushed. Celeana is kick ass as always and although I am not the biggest fan of the romance right now, it’s not stopping me from enjoying the book or loving her character. HOWEVER, I will say that some of my opinions on the characters have changed and I’m not sure if that’s still going to be the case when I finish it but I’ll definitely be talking more about that in my full review. AHHH SO MUCH IS HAPPENING AND EVERYTHING IS AWESOME!
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Now this is a book I didn’t think I’d read. Ever. I mean, have you seen the size of it? If it’s a fantasy, fine. If it’s a contemporary, great. I love big contemporary novels. But a classic? I had a hard enough time getting through Tess of the D’Urbervilles for my English class, let alone a book that has 100 more pages to it. AHH, BUT DO NOT THREAT, I am audiobooking this baby and I have to say that I fell in love with this story and Jane’s character. I am making slow progress through this one as I only listen to it on my way to and from school but I am about half way through. This book is definitely not what I expected from hearing people talk about it here and there. It’s a very charming story (so far!) and I would recommend it to anyone thinking about giving this one a go, even those of you that look at big classics with small font and cringe (like me).
The Man Who Mistook His Wife For a Hat by Oliver Sacks
This is not a book I’m likely to review as it’s 100% out of my lane. I’m studying psychology this year and this is a book I’ve picked up for a bit of extra reading. I mean, with a title like that it was hard not to reserve it at the library as soon as I got the chance. As the Goodreads summary says, this book “recounts the case histories of patients lost in the bizarre, apparently inescapable world of neurological disorders.” Now that MIGHT SOUND SCARY AND WEIRD but the couple of cases I’ve read so far have been interesting to say the least. It might be just me being a psychology nerd but I love it and if you have even a vague interest in it, I’d definitely recommend it.
A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
I HAVE A CONFESSION TO MAKE. I got this book for my birthday. My birthday was in February. I really really wanted to read this GIANT of a book before season 5 of the TV show hit the screens. The fact that it’s still on my currently reading list should be raising some red flags. I AM SO ASHAMED. If I’m being honest, I’ve been reading it on and off so it’s not like I’m taking forever, it’s just that I keep forgetting about it. As a massive fan of the HBO show, so I already adored the characters (or at least some of them) before going into this book and in the 350 pages that I have read, I fell in love with George R.R. Martin’s writing style. I do plan on reading all of them, just…maybe…not…yet…
House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
This was supposed to be a book I would read over the summer but if you ever see this book in real life, you’ll see why I’m having a tough time getting into it. It’s HUGE. It’s so so intimidating and it’s written with loads of footnotes and whatnot. When you flip through its 700 pages you’ll see blank pages and filled pages and pages with writing going down the side and blue text and red text and different fonts too. I’m not far into this horror story yet and I still might not finish it for some while but it’s such a bizarre book I’ll have to get through it. Look out for it next time you’re at the bookstore because it’s worth just seeing how strange it is.
Have you had this problem before? Or are you a strictly one-book-at-a-time kind of person? HOW DO I GET OUT OF THIS MESS? Let me know if you’ve read any of the titles I’ve listed and what you thought of them!
I realise how cliche I sound when I say I can’t believe it’s now October, but it’s true. Lo and behold, the sun is setting sooner, school has started and I actually needed a coat the other day because of the chill outside. I’ve discovered so many cool book blogs this month and they’re a m a z i n g. It may not look like a great reading month from the lack of books in my “Books I’ve read section” but I feel like I might be getting out of the reading slump. Hazarrrrrrr!
Books I’ve Read
Reading Challenge Update
Back to Classics Challenge – I really do think I’m going to reach my goal of the 9/12 classics! I’ve finished Tess of the D’Urbervilles and I’m almost half way through Jane Eyre (which I didn’t think I’d enjoy as much as I am!). After that one I’ll probably read one more and that’s my goal reached. Yay! Current status: 8/12 read.
Alphabet Soup Challenge – Ahh none of the books I read this month covered the ten letters I still have to cover for this challenge BUT I’m still not worried too much. I’ve got timeeeeee…. Current status: 16/26 letters covered.
New Author Challenge – Finished it last month! Whoooo!
Goodreads Challenge – Okay, okay so I’m even more behind than I was last month but I am reading more than I was! I’m reading five books at once give me a break…
I have absolutely got to give this one to one of my favourite authors of all time, Sarah J. Maas and her series of novellas The Assassin’s Blade. I put off reading this book for a long long while and looking back I’m not really sure why. THERE ARE SO MANY REFERENCES IN THIS BOOK AND EVERYTHING FITS PERFECTLY WITH THE REST OF THE NOVELS IT GAVE ME SO MUCH JOY. I really do love it when everything fits together and because of this book I now love Sarah J. Maas even more, which, to be quite honest, I didn’t think was possible.
Most Anticipated October Release
Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…
A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.
Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.
To see the things I've been loving this September click HERE!
I have so many cool things planned for October you’re not even ready! BUT tell me about YOUR MONTH. I know I’m pretty much FAILING but how are you doing with your reading challenges/goals? With only three months left of 2015 (THREE MONTHS!) do you think you’ll make it? Any Halloween plans? If I see anyone dressed as a book character I will probably tackle them in hug that clearly coveys the bookish vibes~
I need everyone to know that I am taking this list very seriously. Not only do I have the the ten books/ series that are a MUST if you want to be on my YA and Children’s Fantasy 101 course, I also have what we’ll be learning from each book and I’ve also got some wider reading suggestions too. Yupp. I loved making this week’s list.
1. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
It’s a classic. Honestly, it should be a given by now. Not only is this series super famous and all round amazing, it basically covers the old fashioned style of magic that is used in book while some of the other books on this list would have more modern styles. I’d totally be the teacher that sets Harry Potter trivia for tests.
Now this is a series that gets compared to Harry Potter a lot so by putting it up I can teach my students the never-compare-my-two-favourite-series-and-tell-me-one-is-a-rip-off lesson. Plus, I mean, this series is just so funny AND EDUCATIONAL! Greek mythology tests would also be a thing for this one.
Sarah J. Maas is a Queen. Yupp. That’s the first lesson my students would learn along with Harry-Potter-is-life and the one above. From Sarah J. Maas we would learn all about world building and how to rip someone’s heart out with only a few chapters.
These books are just so funny. Plus, this series has a lot of politics and scheming so that would be fun to teach. This world is far more developed than my next choice and I think also has a better mythology background.
We’re not planning on learning anything from the content of this book. We’re learning how the hell it go so popular and how to answer the every standing question: Team Jacob or Team Edward?
Both of them. There’s no wider reading going on here it is COMPULSORY to read everything Cassandra Clare has every written before you even step into my classroom. From this book, we’ll be learning all about how different species of supernatural begins work together in society and we’re also learning the lesson many forget of NEVER TRUST A FAERIE OMG HOW MANY TIMES DO I NEED TO SAY THIS???
This is a bad one to follow that little rant with as this book is bursting with Fae. BUT it’s Sarah J. Maas. Have I mentioned she’s a Queen yet?
You see, I’ve picked this one especially because it has a lot of travelling between different universes that run parallel to each other which none of the other books have. Plus, V.E. Schwab is amazing and everybody should read this book.
Here’s the thing: I’d really love to put A Daughter of Smoke and Bone in this place. I really would. But I haven’t read it yet. Yikes. So I went with this, somewhat disliked, series by Lauren Kate which I read some years ago but I’m sure I will be re reading since the movie is coming out next year. There’s a lot of “angel” YA books out there so I guess with this choice I’m covering that area.
And that’s it! Make sure to leave a link in the comments to your list and I’ll check them out!
Heir of Fire || Sarah J. Maas || Fantasy || 562 pages || Bloomsbury USA Children’s || 4.61 on Goodreads
Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy.
While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?
RATING: [5/5] – I know, I know. I’ve given all of Sarah J. Maas’ books five stars but compared the other books in the series, this is definitely the best one.
RECOMMEND TO: People that enjoy high fantasy with a historical kind of vibe so definitely fans of Game of Thrones. And if for some reason you didn’t like the first two and wanted to give up on the series: READ THIS ONE and then decide if you want to drop it.
DISCLAIMER: THIS REVIEW IS GOING TO BE FULL OF SPOILERS SO IF YOU HAVE NOT READ HEIR OF FIRE YET, YOU SHOULD GET ON THAT AND COME BACK WHEN YOU’RE DONE. IT’S FANTASTIC. IT’S THE BEST BOOK OF THE SERIES SO FAR. I ABSOLUTELY AND UTTERLY LOVED IT. THAT’S ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW. :3
Crown of Midnight | Sarah J. Maas | Fantasy | 420 pages | Bloomsbury USA Children’s | 4.51 on Goodreads
From the throne of glass rules a king with a fist of iron and a soul as black as pitch. Assassin Celaena Sardothien won a brutal contest to become his Champion. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown. She hides her secret vigilantly; she knows that the man she serves is bent on evil.
Keeping up the deadly charade becomes increasingly difficult when Celaena realizes she is not the only one seeking justice. As she tries to untangle the mysteries buried deep within the glass castle, her closest relationships suffer. It seems no one is above questioning her allegiances—not the Crown Prince Dorian; not Chaol, the Captain of the Guard; not even her best friend, Nehemia, a foreign princess with a rebel heart.
Then one terrible night, the secrets they have all been keeping lead to an unspeakable tragedy. As Celaena’s world shatters, she will be forced to give up the very thing most precious to her and decide once and for all where her true loyalties lie…and whom she is ultimately willing to fight for.
This review does not have spoilers for Crown of Midnight however I do state how I felt about what happened so please come back once you’ve read this book if you don’t like knowing personal reactions or if you consider them spoilers.