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 exhilirating. 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. (from Goodreads)
I feel like ever since this book came out last year, I've been hearing about it. I always thought it sounded interested, but it never quite made it up the TBR pile. Then I was lucky enough to pick up an ARC of the sequel Crown of Midnight at BEA this year, so I decided to go for it.
What a perfect escape! This week has been quite stressful for me, and during the day I would look forward to coming home and escaping in the fantasy world that Sarah J. Maas created. I love that Celaena is beautiful AND fierce. I, of course, enjoyed reading about the progression of her relationships with Dorian and Chaol. I was so touched by the friendship she shares with Nehemia. Two amazing women who, at the end of the day, just need a good girlfriend. That rings true to a lot of my relationships with my friends.
I'm not sure how I felt about how the back and forth referring to Celaena as both "the assassin" and Celaena and Chaol as both "the Captain of the Guard" and Chaol. A few times here and there would have been enough, but it bordered on overdone, in my opinion.
On to Crown of Midnight!