Sarah J. Maas: The Assassin’s Blade (EBook, 2014, Bloomsbury Childrens) 5 stars

In these five prequel novellas to "Throne of Glass," feared assassin Celaena embarks on daring …

My Review of The Assassin's Blade

5 stars

Having read the first three novels in the Throne of Glass series, it was fun to take a detour to read these five novellas, which give the reader a glimpse into the months leading up to the first novel. The novellas feature swashbuckling pirates, horseback rides through the desert, romance, and lots and lots of blood. The first three novellas are like being on a rollercoaster and sitting through the slow climb up the massive incline before the ride's first drop. Celaena's legend grows, her relationship with Sam takes root, and she leaves the desert with a newfound sense of optimism. The latter three novellas, however, see Celaena teeter over that edge, and eventually plummet to never before seen depths.

The writing itself was great, and exactly what you'd expect if you've read a Sarah J. Maas book previously. She does a great job of setting a scene and describing things in great detail, but not so much that you wish the focus would shift elsewhere. I find myself being able to envision the scene whenever I read something from Maas, which helps with immersion and seems to raise the stakes of what's happening in the story.

This is essential reading for anyone reading the Throne of Glass novels, as they provide valuable detail into Celaena Sardothien's past, and provide additional context into who she is and why she is the way she is. For anyone curious about the series or even Sarah J. Maas' writing in general, The Assassin's Blade is a great way to get dip your toes in and see what you think.