I really want to like this series. Everyone does and I’d like to be a part of the excitement. But after reading this book, I have to admit that this series isn’t for me. I don’t like the characters and I’m not curious about what will or won’t happen. This will a series I won’t complete.
I borrowed an e-copy of this from the library and read it back in early March so some of the details have since faded away, which means I don’t think I can give a good summary of the story. But basically, Celaena is now the king’s Champion, she develops feelings for one of the guys, secrets are revealed, someone dies, and there’s a witch and an annoying talking doorknob.
My thoughts: (some spoilers)
Warning: This is a rant. erenTghts may bhoue incoht.
I’m now convinced this series isn’t for me. The world is interesting and the plot holds my attention, but the characters annoy me and I find it hard to believe them capable of their position and duties. I was so agitated by their silliness that I almost stopped reading and was tempted to skim.
The pace and structure of this installment was okay. I enjoyed the story until I got to its middle, which is when the characters really started to piss me off, mainly Celaena. I still don’t believe she is the most feared assassin. The only time she seems deadly is when she goes into her killer mode. That’s when she’s most interesting as well. I like that she is girly and likes pretty things and shopping and flirting, but she also strikes me as naive and gullible in regards to her assignments. She gets tricked too easily.
Though I was annoyed by her antics — like rending her clothes only to buy new ones because her friend died (I didn’t see the point of that. Why destroy your clothes only to buy new ones?), — I also warmed to her in this installment. She’s trying hard, but those who she cares for are taken away and those who can help her are too tight-lipped.
Speaking of which, that damn door knob/knocker was annoying as well. I wish Celaena could use a sword and smash it to pieces. I understand that it’s beneficial to Celaena, and entertaining to us readers, to have Celaena discover things for herself, but I think it’s pointless, and annoying, for there to be an all-knowing doorknob that doesn’t dispense much knowledge or guidance. How did it know which witch Celaena killed? I don’t recall her saying who it was. I think it would have been better if he was just really good at piecing things together rather than being all-knowing. How does his all-knowing magic work anyways? Does he have a connection to all the key holes in the palace and can see and hear through them all?
Anyways, back to the characters. I think my issue with the characters is really with the love triangle. I hate such things. I’m tired of them. The only way I can ignore them is if the plot or characters are so interesting that I overlook the love triangle. However, I am glad that Celaena is with Chaol. I prefer him to Prince Dorian though Chaol annoys me as much as Celaena does. I just don’t believe him and Celaena are competent at their jobs. Is Celaena really an assassin? Did the king appoint Chaol as captain of the guard at such a young age as a joke? And how are they in love but it takes one word said against Chaol’s character to convince Celaena that he’s not to be trusted? That mix up where she’s mad at Chaol, the Prince tries to set things right, and Celaena is back with Chaol again seems like unnecessary drama. I almost skimmed those parts.
Just about every issue in this installment could be solved by having the characters talk to each other, which they refused to do. That irked me so much I almost stopped reading. It drags out the story unnecessarily. Speaking of unnecessary things, that whole kidnapping fiasco could have been avoided if Archer had chosen to talk to Celaena instead of doing the most dramatic thing he could think of and kidnap Chaol. Celaena gave him a month to pack and leave before he’s killed and this dummy spent the month planning a kidnapping that got almost all his peeps killed. He’s crazy.
Also, the characters suck at sneaking around. Someone always sees them. They need to stop! Best they just walk boldly into the middle of a room to do whatever they were sneaking off to do because they’re going to be seen anyways.
The story is okay. I recommend it if you’re interested in the series, but I will be stopping here. The only thing I was curious about was revealed in this installment so I’m not curious to know what will happen next.