Celaena Sardothien is Adarlan’s most feared assassin. As part of the Assassin’s Guild, her allegiance is to her master, Arobynn Hamel, yet Celaena listens to no one and trusts only her fellow killer-for-hire, Sam. In these action-packed novellas – together in one edition for the first time – Celaena embarks on five daring missions. They take her from remote islands to hostile deserts, where she fights to liberate slaves and seeks to avenge the tyrannous. But she is acting against Arobynn’s orders and could suffer an unimaginable punishment for such treachery. Will Celaena ever be truly free? Explore the dark underworld of this kick-ass heroine to find out.
Title: The Assassin’s Blade
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Number of Pages: 435
Publishing Date: Mar. 14th, 2014
This month I’ve decided to marathon read Throne of Glass, Crown of Midnight, Heir of Fire, Queen of Shadows, and The Assassin’s Blade in order to catch up with this series before the release of Empire of Storms. I’d already read Throne of Glass in February, so that was a quick re-read for me at the very end of July. After finally re-immersing myself in this world, I decided to read The Assassin’s Blade because some people said to read it after Throne of Glass and others said to read it after Crown of Midnight, so I just decided to read it because I was really interested in learning about Celaena’s backstory. This book contains five novellas and they each tell a short story about Celaena’s life before the events within Throne of Glass occur, but if you read them altogether they actually tell one massive story with small gaps of time missing between them. I really, really enjoyed every single story within this novel and my appreciation for Sarah J. Maas has grown immensely because it’s obviously clear how much intricate detail she has put into developing this story and these characters.
The rest of this review is spoiler-free.
The Assassin and the Pirate Lord
This was a great opening story for this collection of novellas! I found myself immediately captured within the plot and I grew excited, anxious, and nervous as to where the plot of this story would go. I really enjoyed how we got to see a more caring side of Celaena and I loved being introduced to Sam’s character in this novella.
The Assassin and the Healer
This was probably the shortest story within this collection, but I highly enjoyed it nonetheless. I loved how this story wasn’t as plot heavy as the others and it was, once again, showing a side of Celaena that we weren’t really able to see that much in Throne of Glass.
The Assassin and the Desert
This story was one of my favorites from this collection! I really hope that the other books in this series re-visit the setting that this story took place in because I was so interested with this story and the new characters that appeared.
The Assassin and the Underworld
This story was so epic! I loved seeing the chemistry develop between Sam and Celaena, which was really intense to watch as I was trying to avoid getting too attached to Sam’s character (which I honestly epically failed at because I really enjoyed reading about his character). Also, I’m 99% sure that Chaol and Dorian made an appearance in this story and I practically squealed out loud when the characters that I assume to be them showed up in the story.
The Assassin and the Empire
Well, this was definitely the most heartbreaking story within this collection of novellas. I knew the events that happened in this story were going to occur, but I simply wasn’t ready for them and my emotions were extremely on edge, to be honest.
I think these novellas gave readers the opportunity to discover why Celaena does or says certain things throughout Throne of Glass, and I really appreciate getting to further my understanding of her character. I know that some people can’t stand her, but I find Celaena to be witty, strong, confident, and really caring. I really love her character, which in turn made me really love these stories.
I grew really attached to Sam’s character (which I had tried extremely hard not to do) and I loved learning about how his relationship with Celaena developed. Arobynn honestly just pissed me off 99% of the time throughout the course of these novellas. I really liked certain side characters that were introduced throughout the novellas like Yrene and Ansel.
“If you can learn to endure pain, you can survive anything. Some people learn to embrace it- to love it. Some endure it through drowning it in sorrow, or by making themselves forget. Others turn it into anger.”
As always, Sarah J. Maas’s writing was detailed, capturing, and wonderful. I love her style of writing so much and every single book she’s written that I’ve read so far never fails to amaze me.
Overall, this collection of novellas really took me by surprise and I absolutely loved it. This is an obvious key essential to the Throne of Glass series and I’m excited to finally start reading Crown of Midnight next!
So, have any of you read this collection of novellas? Comment your thoughts below!