This weeks Sunday Series Recommendation is the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas.
For crimes she committed assassin and eighteen year old Celaena has spent a year working in the Salt Mines of Endovier. She thought the mines would also be her tomb when she is dragged before the crown prince and offered a deal. If she will represent him in his father's competition for a new royal assassin she will be taken out of Endovier and given the chance to earn something she has longed for even before she was a prisoner. Her freedom.
Her competitors are all men. Thieves, Mercenaries, and other assassins sponsored by members of the king's council. If she can beat each of them in a series of tests then she will be conscripted as the royal assassin for three years and then she will be free. Free to leave a land that she holds no allegiance to.
She trains with the captain of the guard, Westfall, which she finds exhilarating and challenging. But she finds life at court tedious and boring. Until she begins to befriend her sponsor the crown prince. For the two of them share a love of books. As she spends her days confined to the palace and training for each test that the contest will throw at her Celaena finds that life becomes more interesting. Especially when her fellow competitors start showing up dead. Now she must figure out who the killer is before she too becomes a victim. And what about the greater destiny that she begins to discover in the process?
One of the reasons that I liked this book series thus far, I have only read two of the novels, is because of the main character. One moment she is incredibly likable and in the next she is almost annoying. There are moments where she reads so cold that I almost felt as though ice was forming on the pages as I read them. Moments where she becomes so materialistic and obsessed with shopping that I found myself rolling my eyes at her. Then there are the moments where she shows such tenderness and regard for the people around her. That I finally realized why I ultimately like her. She reminds me of both myself and countless women in my life that I count as friends. Afterall we aren't all wonderful all of the time, are we?
Maas manages to give us a very flawed heroine who is tangibly human. At eighteen years old it is no wonder that her moods and attitudes would change like the tides. Celaena also posesses an intelligence and love for literature that I think needs to be fostered in today's world.
And it isn't just the heroine that has her strengths and flaws bared to the readers. Westfall, the Crown Prince, a foreign princess named Nehemia who Celaena befriends, and even some of the more nefarious characters have moments of humanity that you don't often find in Young Adult literature these days. Yes, there is the viewpoint of a novel on them but their struggles are ultimately ones that we face everyday in the real world. Even if that struggle is only what should we wear to dinner?
The other titles in order of the series are Crown of Midnight and Heir of Fire. I believe there is a fourth installment coming but I haven't seen what the title of it is yet. Happy reading!