| Part Two |
Chapters 14 – 27
As one of the few people to have not read Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass series, I couldn’t resist the opportunity of a read along, despite having heard very mixed opinions – ranging from extreme love to extreme hate! From the 8th – 18th January I will be reading Throne of Glass and posting my thoughts for discussion. Here’s what the schedule looks like:
Discussion of chapters 1 – 13
Discussion of chapters 14 – 27
Discussion of chapters 28 – 39
Discussion of chapters 40 – end
Feel free to join in with the read along at any point and all discussion points are welcome (but no spoilers!!)… which reminds me:
| The Story So Far |
Celaena continues her training as she and the other contestants embark upon the First Test of the Champions. Whilst frustrated at her inability to show her true talents and subjected to the taunts and ridicule of the other contestants, there are far more sinister events taking place in the castle of Rifthold. In a series of grizzly murders, the champions are seemingly being picked off one by one. Celaena, in her curiosity to discover more of the castle, finds far more than she bargained for as she flees terrors in the night, converses with Fae Queens and realises that the Kingdom of Adarlan is not so devoid of magic as it might first appear.
| The Discussion |
During my Part One discussion I took a broad spectrum of the story and characters we encounter. In this post, I will be looking at how both these aspects have developed over the second part of the read along, and look at some of the highlights and low points so far. It has to be said though, I really am enjoying this book! So much so that I think I’m going to find it more difficult creating a list of low points. Perhaps that section should just be called ‘nit-picking’…
During the second part of the novel, the storyline developed in a much more intriguing and mysterious way than I at first expected. The introduction of magical elements to the narrative bring a sense of weight and history to the world along with a sinister undercurrent which is likely to play a key role in the rest of the novel to come. Celaena’s ‘dream’ encounter with the Fae Queen at the mysterious carved tomb on Samhuinn also added another magical element to the storyline, leading us to believe Celaena was brought to the castle by, perhaps, divine design to solve the gruesome and possibly magically linked murders. The ante has most definitely been upped in this section, and a captivating framework has been created for the second half to come.
| The Highlights |
As a lover of crime and detective fiction I couldn’t help but have a giddy moment when poor ol’ eyeballs got his comeuppance. This is an excellent twist to the tale and, though I was expecting some (quite literal) backstabbing between contestants, I wasn’t expecting ghastly supernatural murders at all! Definitely an exciting turn of events. Which leads me onto my next point…
I absolutely love a good dose of the supernatural and the fact that we’re now feeling the presence of the magic one thought destroyed in the storyline. I love fantasy fiction whether its heavily laden with magic systems or not, but this mysterious magic – the Wyrdmarks smeared in blood on the walls and carved into the stones of the castle – have most definitely piqued my interest! I’m looking forward to how this side of the narrative unravels and, more importantly, whether or how it connects to Celaena’s past. And talking of Celaena’s past…
Celaena’s heartfelt number on the piano and her subsequent conversation with Dorian was a very interesting moment, especially when glimmers of Celaena’s past shine through. I love that we experienced a more emotional side to her character but, most importantly, one in which she didn’t change entirely. If I’m given a mean and snarky character to love; I sure as hell don’t want them to change so completely over the course of a novel that they’re unrecognisable by the end of it. Fingers crossed for this feisty lady.
And what’s a feisty lady to do when confined to a castle? Why! Explore it of course! When I say I love worldbuilding I mean it, right down to the last crumbling stone. So discovering more about the castle of Rifthold and exploring its secret passages was a definite highlight, one which was almost reminiscent of The Secret Garden – a book which inspired a lifelong love of hidden architecture! Celaena’s decision not to escape also felt right. At this stage she has nothing to go back to, someone who obviously betrayed her in the outside world, and the potential for legitimate freedom within her grasp. Good choice!
But then her two fancy men both come to visit her chambers late at night… and encounter one another instead! Clearly these two are both falling for Celaena and, whilst I don’t dislike Dorian by any means, Chaol is a much more intriguing character. So far I’m not hating the ‘romance’ level of this novel… it slots in quite comfortably for now so I’m willing to call it a highlight!
The tests! The daring rescue! Nox! Ol’ Grey eyes! Finally Celaena has a friend and one stupid bastard with a knife decides to try and kill him. Rude! However, Celaena not only gets to show off what one can do with a rope, a gargoyle and some sticky-backed plastic but she also manages to rescue a blossoming friendship in the process! A win, win I’d say… except for the losing part of course.
Did you have any favourite moments or highlights during this stage in the novel??
| The Low Points |
First things first: Not inviting Celaena to the party! Rude! Sure she might discreetly drown you in the punch, or poison your canapés but if you’re going to invite a bunch of murders and rapists anyway… !
Stay tuned for the next instalment of this Read Along on 14th January