“She was no lamb to slaughter. No sacrifice on an alter of the greater good. And she was not done yet.”
Rating: 4/5 stars
Format: Physical copy
*NOTE: This is NOT a spoiler free review of KoA.
Aelin Galathynius’s journey from slave to king’s assassin to the queen of a once-great kingdom reaches its heart-rending finale as war erupts across her world. . .
Aelin has risked everything to save her people―but at a tremendous cost. Locked within an iron coffin by the Queen of the Fae, Aelin must draw upon her fiery will as she endures months of torture. Aware that yielding to Maeve will doom those she loves keeps her from breaking, though her resolve begins to unravel with each passing day…
With Aelin captured, Aedion and Lysandra remain the last line of defense to protect Terrasen from utter destruction. Yet they soon realize that the many allies they’ve gathered to battle Erawan’s hordes might not be enough to save them. Scattered across the continent and racing against time, Chaol, Manon, and Dorian are forced to forge their own paths to meet their fates. Hanging in the balance is any hope of salvation―and a better world.
And across the sea, his companions unwavering beside him, Rowan hunts to find his captured wife and queen―before she is lost to him forever.
As the threads of fate weave together at last, all must fight, if they are to have a chance at a future. Some bonds will grow even deeper, while others will be severed forever in the explosive final chapter of the Throne of Glass series.
*MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD
I am a lot of things after finishing this book, happy, sad, hurt, elated, relieved. But the main feeling I had after this book was pure BITTERNESS. Yep, you read that right. It seems everyone is raving about this book, and don’t get me wrong I really did love it, but I also had a lot of problems with it. Problems that I can’t ignore. We’ll get to the problems in a minute, but for now lets talk about the good, shall we?
What I liked
❋ I liked how much darker this book was compared to the others. I enjoyed that everyone was struggling, especially Aelin after being captured and tortured by Maeve and Cairn. While she was captured her parts were difficult to read and I think that added a lot to the story, so I’m glad SJM included it. It would have been one thing if SJM just briefly talked about Aelin’s time with Maeve but the gritty details really worked well here.
❋ Surprisingly, I also enjoyed how much planning there was in this book. Normally, I hate books that take forever to get to the action, but with so many POV’s and the amount of time this book covers I also think it worked really well. I was very nervous going into this knowing it was almost 1,000 pages because I felt like 700 pages in ACOWAR was too much, but luckily that wasn’t the case here.
❋ I still love all the SJM plot twists and tricks up her sleeve
❋ Barely any mention of Sam. I was praying he wouldn’t be involved in this unless Aelin died because I wouldn’t have been able to handle it.
What I don’t know if I liked
❋ The ending, I mean, I guess it was good, but there’s so many loose ends. I think I would have much rather preferred if the epilogue took place ten years later, it would have made everything feel more final. But this ending just makes me feel like “okay, the big battle is over, now it’s time to rebuild the world so let’s get to work.” But then again, do I even want to know the work that would go into rebuilding the world? Probably not.
What went wrong
*cracks knuckles* Let’s do the damn thing.
❋ For starters, let’s chat about how SJM let her characters treat each other like shit, shall we? Aedion was HORRENDOUS is this, absolutely horrendous. I hated what she did to his character so much that I was actually hoping he would die. He treated Lysandra like garbage, and y’all know I get a little defensive when it comes to one of my queens. There is nothing that ever warrants you being so mean spirited towards someone – saying horrible things and putting someone down only to realize you didn’t mean any of it three seconds before said person is about to die. No, just NO. And yes, I’m talking about you too, Elide.
❋ Why does every single person need to have a mate? Or maybe I should rephrase that, why does every heterosexual person need to have a mate? I mean for God’s sake even Abraxos had a mate. Enough is enough.
❋ Gavriel dying was dumb and irrelevant, but somehow I really cared? I didn’t even know I liked Gavriel until I was sobbing over him dying. However, why even reunite Aedion and Gavriel to only kill him two pages later? I also kind of hate that cared.
❋ Manon getting the shittiest end of the stick. Just, no. God, please no. Manon is my queen forever and always. She deserves the entire world and then some, and SJM did her so fucking dirty, and Abraxos too. I will never forgive this and I hate so much how things ended with her character.
❋ And we have to save the best for last, so let’s talk about the Thirteen because I AM LIVID. Now keep in mind I read this book over a month ago, but I needed to cool down because of this very specific topic. I’m still pretty heated though. Is SJM kidding me? She really just went and killed off The Thirteen, for some shitty ass sacrifice. Like, if you’re going to kill them at least kill them during the final battle. When Asterin told Manon to live I was actually sobbing at my desk at work. SOBBING I TELL YOU. It felt so wrong. I love Rowan and Aelin, but honestly they could have both died and it would have hurt less and been a better sacrifice. The ONLY, and when I say only I really mean it, good thing that came out of The Thirteen dying was Asterin getting the kill she desperately deserved. But fuck the rest man, that shit sucked.
All in all, I’m definitely sad to see this series go, but I don’t know if I could handle another book after everything that went down. (I’m lying, I totally could). Even though I had a lot of issues with this book, I still enjoyed the story overall, and I still love these characters fiercely.
Until next time,
P.S. – I know I normally include my favorite quotes, but this book is almost 1,000 pages so it’s safe to say there are WAY too many