Books, Teen Reviews

Read + Review – Empire of Storms by Sarah Maas


Aelin Ashryver Galathnyius also known as Celaena Sardothien is a long lost queen and a skillful assassin. She is very passionate about many thing especially with who she loves and cares for. However, her immediate reaction to when she is angry or sad is a complete unsettling calm or a rage. Nonetheless, her rash actions often get her in trouble. She has control over fire which is said to be as strong as the first king of Terrasen’s magic. Her life was spent in series of hardships after a great terror happened in her childhood. In this book her path to the throne has no end in sight. She has lost many friends and has also gained many. The long road from a ruthless assassin to a queen has enthralled many people. The kingdoms of her continent continue to deteriorate. The only thing that may save her is a desperate quest with a high likelihood of failure. Want to know what this quest is? Then read the book!

The very first thing I noticed while reading is that the tone and content of the book deviates from the previous books in the series. Furthermore, the book develops its characters at the pace of snail and doesn’t have much action. If you are looking for a book that will keep you on the edge of your seat then this is not for you. However, the humor in this book is an absolute classic, and was able to make the slow plot more enjoyable. The last 20% of the book had an unexpected twist and climax, which made the whole book worth it. The characters were definitely a nice change from the perfect omniscient, omnipotent, fantasy characters many books have. Nevertheless, they didn’t develop the antagonist of the overarching story line very well and it doesn’t give you that hate for the antagonist that other works can procure. Take the show “A Series of Unfortunate Events.” Right from the start they made you despise Count Olaf. This book doesn’t make you hate the main antagonist. They do reveal his unspeakable horrors, but the characters get over it too easily. There is no internal conflict there. A good analogy for this would be seeing your parents die before your own eyes and knowing you could have saved them. You don’t get over a feeling like that very easily. On the other hand, they made you abhor another secondary protagonist, Maeve, with such a passion you would have ripped her apart with your bare hands if you saw a glimpse of her smug face.

The most memorable thing in the book were the actions of the main protagonist at the conclusion. She made a major sacrifice and didn’t think for a second that anyone would save her. This single act shows the true loyalty of Aelin’s character.


Reviewed by Abhishek, Grade 6, Glen Allen Library

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