Read + Reviewed is a series of blog posts featuring 2 or 3 books I’ve read alongwith a mini-book review from yours truly! 🙂 (Find more book reviews at Book Reviews A-Z!)
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.
Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.
Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another.
Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.
Celaena Sardothien is ruthlessly efficient, beautiful and often a total enigma. The best part is that her behavior and personality is totally at odds at the so-called “rumours” about Adarlan’s Assassin (her). Chaol, Captain of the Guard and Celaena’s trainer is quite fearless for a man who interacts with a ruthless assassin. Last but not least, Dorian, “the prince,” is more-or-less like what I expected. He’s chivalrous and kind toward Celaena but also surprisingly careless in her presence. I quite expected his stupidity to cost him his life. He’s also bored with palace life and wants more. Overall though, the cast of characters is interesting to read about. The fantasy land it is set in is very cool and I loved reading about badass Sardothien’s adventures.
Rating: 5 stars
Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld
Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she’s made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings…
Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the ‘Afterworld’ to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved – and terrifying – stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.
Reading a book containing parallel storylines which unfold across alternating chapters sounded daunting…until I started reading (because I was instantly addicted!). Darcy’s experiences as a debut writer in New York were really interesting to read about because I’ve always wondered what it must be like to land a publishing deal. Lizzie, on the other hand, generated a different kind of interest in me. I especially enjoyed reading the scenes describing her brush with death and interactions with fellow psychopomp Yama.
There was always this feeling of anticipation accompanying me as I read this book and without knowing what to expect, I was still satisfied. Best of all, most of the side characters (e.g. Nisha, Darcy’s sister) were quirky and lively.
Rating: 5 star