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Review: Crown of Midnight

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Title:Crown of Midnight

Author:Sarah J. Maas

Series: Book 2

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

 

*Note:Check out my review for book one here.

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Synopsis

After winning the competition, Celaena struggles to find a balance between protecting her friends and saving people from the King’s deadly grasps, but it’s hard to keep secrets. While her relationship with Dorian has ended, her friendship with Chaol only grows stronger as they lend each other strength when needed. Celaena hopes that things won’t get more complicated, but Elena is not done with her yet. It seems that Celaena’s destiny is inescapable and after a great tragedy befalls someone close to her she is ready to embrace it. The King is powerful, but Celaena starts to uncover clues that may point to the source of his power.

divider-51Favorite Characters

Celaena, duh! She has to be in here because she’s the main character, and she’s pretty awesome. Despite her dark moments in the book I couldn’t stop loving her. In fact, I think I liked her more because of it. With those moments we got to see how she could really be when pushed to the edge. And just how deeply she can love people closest to her. I think showing to what lengths she’d go for them… that was powerful. She didn’t even act this way during the competition in the first book which goes to show how she puts others above herself.

Another fave in this book was Chaol. Without giving spoilers I’m going to go ahead and say that it was great to see a different side of him, one that wasn’t so guarded and uptight. I really enjoyed that because in the first book I feel like we didn’t really get to know him very well. Not as well as with Dorian.

Nehemia… oh Nehemia. You’re so vibrant and bold and I love it. She’s just about the only person that isn’t afraid to tell Celaena what they really think. She challenges and pushes Celaena in this book in a way that just… well it’s really heartbreaking. Still, I love how strong of a character she is and how well she can understand people around them. She’s incredibly perceptive and loyal.

divider-51Favorite Scenes

► One of the moments that revealed how close Chaol and Celaena were becoming was pretty early on in the book. I liked it because he was finally starting to be honest with himself and with her, he was even willing to express how he felt. It was nice to be able to get to really know him after seeing him so closed off in the first book.

He stopped her again at a shadowy landing with a firm hand on her shoulder. “When you go away,” he said, the distance torchlight illuminated the rugged planes of his face, “I have no idea what’s happening to you. I don’t know if you’re hurt or rotting in some gutter somehwere. Yesterday I heard a rumor that they caught the killer responsible for Nirall’s death.” He brought his face close to hers, his voice hoarse. “Until you arrived today, I thought they meant you. I was about to go down there myself to find you.”

► I picked this moment because I just love the way that Maas describes their love. It’s just beautiful

“Did Sam love you?”

Yes. More than anyone had ever loved her. He’d loved her enough to risk everything–to give up everything. He’d loved her so much that she still felt the echoes of it, even now. “Very much,” she breathed.

► Ress is definitely one of the greatest guards that hangs around Chaol, haha. I love his stories and comments.

“If I recall correctly, you complain about them every time I wipe the floor with you when we spar.”

“Oho!” Ress cried, and Chaol’s brows rose higher. Celaena gave him a grin. 

“Dangerous words,” Chaol said. “Do we need to go to the training hall to see if you can back them up?”

“Well as long as your men don’t object to seeing you knocked on your ass.”

“We certainly do not object to that,” Ress crowed. Chaol shot him a look, more amused than a warning. Ress quickly added, “Captain.”

► Man, it was so great to finally see Dorian get some backbone. It was about time he started speaking up more against his father. I know it’s dangerous for him and everything, but he was always too complacent.

“Is this the plan? Now that we’ve conquered the continent, you’ll throw everyone into Calaculla or Endovier, until there’s no one left in the kingdoms but people from Adarlan?”

Silence.

The rage dragged him down to the place where he’d felt that flicker of ancient power when Nehemia had touched his heart. “You keep tightening the leash, and it’s going to snap,” Dorian said to his father, then looked across the table to Roland and Mullison. “How about you spend a year in Calaculla, and when you’re done, you two can sit here and tell me about your plans for expansion.”

► So … no spoilers buuuuut, Celaena does something for Chaol’s birthday and he’s just blown away by it. I thought it was such a cute gesture and really… ah, all my feels. I really enjoy their friendship.

In the glow of the lights from the greenhouse, his profile was illuminated. She’d meant the dinner to be a nice surprise–a way to tell him how much she appreciated him–but his reaction… How long had it been since he felt cherished? 

► Another cute moment between them

He pulled back, but didn’t let her go. “Why are you crying?”

“Because,” she whispered, her voice shaking, “you remind me of how the world outght to be. What the world can be.”

► And just adding this one because so many moments that had me on the verge of tears involved this dog. Ugh, I always get emotional when it comes to animals.

Fleetfoot turned to look up at Celaena, her golden eyes full of question. Celaena reached down to stroke the warm head, the long ears, the slender muzzle. But the question remained. 

Celaena said, “She’s never coming back.”

The dog kept waiting.

divider-51Review

Wow, there are not too many books that have pulled me in so much that I finished it in two days. This book has pretty much solidified that I am now a huge Sarah J. Maas fan. There was plenty of development between characters in this book, particularly between Celaena and Chaol–which was great because I didn’t really feel like we got to know him that well in the first book. He definitely came out of his shell and started to question what really mattered to him, if his blind loyalty to the king was something he should be so invested in.

Celaena also grew quite a bit, learned to have hope, and then suddenly took a dark turn. She stood at an edge for quite a while, and while it was completely different from what she is normally like… it was good to see this side of her. She wasn’t just an assassin or a killing machine but someone with deep feelings that sometimes consumed her. She let her grief overtake her and it just pulled me in. We really got to understand more about Celaena and her motivations in this book. Plus–yes–she was entirely badass.

I’m not going to give any spoilers about the big events in the book, but I will say that they were great. While there was something tragic that happened it seemed like the only real way to get through to Celaena. It was impactful, dramatic, and a bit unforeseen. There was one scene that kinda foreshadowed it so I had a bad feeling since then but what happened still managed to hit me right in the feels.

There were some revelations in the book that I saw coming, others I didn’t. I enjoyed all of them thoroughly–I really hate that I have committed to being spoiler-free in my reviews because I want to discuss it so much haha.

So, would I recommend this book? Hell yes. I can’t wait to start Heir of Fire ❤

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