Series: Throne of Glass #4
Published by Bloomsbury on September 1st, 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, High Fantasy
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.
Roughly one year after its release, I finally got around to Queen of Shadows. To say that the hype surrounding this series is intimidating at times would be a massive understatement. And though I remembered absolutely loving the previous books, my hatred for hype scared me off for a while. But I dove in, doing a full series reread and getting to Queen of Shadows riding my full tidal wave of feels – and that was a very good decision indeed.
Rereading definitely helped me so much. I mean, this is a massive series, the books are getting steadily more chunky, and there’s just so much to this world. There’s really nothing in the books that feels insignificant – and indeed, a lot of the little details in the previous books get way more significance in this one. So even though a series reread took over most of my month, I did not regret it one bit.
Aelin is officially here and she kicks ass. Seriously, I already loved her so much for being so fierce, smart, and sometimes – frankly – arrogant. After the events of Heir of Fire she’s definitely changed, and she’s practically a whole new person. Indeed, Celaena is gone. And we are left with a queen – noble, honorable, and self-sacrificing. Though you can still see the remnants of Celaena in there. It’s just, Aelin is one of the most complex characters I’ve encountered in any book or any series, and I absolutely love her for it. She undergoes so much growth, and you really travel through those phases together with her, so you know exactly what she’s going through. I just. I have the most intense girl crush.
But who really steals my heart? Rowan. I already had intense Rowan feels in Heir of Fire, but I swear, I was spontaneously combusting all over the place in Queen of Shadows. He’s just so sexy. And cool. And strong. And it is 100% my ship. (Chaol who the fuck?) And the feels were intense, and I’m not even going to lie about it, but that was my primary driver to get through this book ASAP. My heart was on FIRE. I put so many sticky notes in my book so I can reread those passages over and over again. AND I NEVER DO THAT. So considering how much of a shippy person I already am, this is like big news. Rowaelin is getting to serious OTP levels for me. It’s like hate-to-allies-to-best-friends-to-lovers and OMG IT’S LIKE IT WAS MADE FORE ME.
Story-wise, so much happens in this book. There are different “acts” with big battles or conflicts, and those scenes are so heartstopping and thrilling. Action-packed. And all things considered, though the characters get into mortal peril multiple times, this is definitely one of the happier books in the series till now. With Aelin in position as a queen, reassembling her court, accompanied by fierce allies, all their plans and plots are really well thought out and carefully crafted. Some readers may be annoyed that there are no major setbacks for them, but considering there’s still two books to go and four books before that were by far not as happy, I thought it was a nice switch that they deserved.
Chaol can go die in a fire. That’s really all I have to say to that douche. I recognize that he grew up a bit by the end, but he’s so dumb and MEAN before that in this book. Ugh. Loser.
Manon got a little better in this book. I still care significantly less about her storyline, but I understand that it’s important to the story. And in this book, she started growing up a little into the right direction as well. And I loved when her path crossed with Aelin’s. Epic. It makes me really excited as to where this series is going.