A girl holding a pair of swords on a brown background

About the Book

Title: Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass #2)
Published: 2013
Series: Throne of Glass
Swoonworthy Scale: 8

Cover Story: Dances with Swords
BFF Charm: Heck Yes
Talky Talk: Near Maastery
Bonus Factors: Witches, Big Reveal
Anti-Bonus Factor: Overreaction
Relationship Status: On Your Team

Danger, Will Robinson! Crown of Midnight is the second book in the Throne of Glass series. If you have not read the first book—Throne of Glass—turn away now. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. If you have read the first book, however, feel free to continue below. I will refrain from major spoilers in my review, but there might be hints at plot points and details about the story.

Cover Story: Dances with Swords

The girl on this cover is either mid-battle—and if that’s the case I applaud her ability to remain spotless—or doing some fancy training moves that would have a lesser-trained individual cutting their own limbs off. Either way, I wouldn’t mess with her.

The Deal:

Celaena Sardothian won the dubious honor of being the King of Adarlan’s Champion, and took down a paranormal threat in the process. But there’s still something questionable happening with the King and his men, and Queen Elena has once again tasked Celaena with finding out more.

Celaena must figure out how to balance her new position with the role Elena says she’s to play, while also making time for life … and possibly love.

BFF Charm: Heck Yes

BFF Charm Heck Yes - sparklier and shinier than the original BFF Charm

Although she can be very young at times, is stubborn as an ox, doesn’t like to ask for help, and is often obnoxiously over-confident, I really like Celaena. Underneath her carefully cultivated exterior lies a young woman who wants nothing more than to find true friends and family, and who’s willing to do almost anything for what she believes is right. She understands that there’s a time and place for loyalty, but isn’t willing to blindly follow orders. And although she would really rather serve her time as Champion and then go find somewhere to live our her freedom in peace, she reluctantly recognizes the need to get involved in the larger issues happening in her country. She’s got a lot of growing to do yet, but there’s an amazing woman inside her that’s just slowly rising to the surface.

Swoonworthy Scale: 8

Celaena broke off her involvement with Dorian in Throne of Glass due to the complicated nature of both of their positions. But that doesn’t mean that Dorian’s totally content to let her just slip away. That said, Celaena’s quite clear on what kind of relationship she wants with him. Particularly when she realizes she’s had deeper feelings for someone else all along.

Talky Talk: Near Maastery

With Crown of Midnight, Sarah J. Maas continues to improve on her already impressive ability to weave a rich world filled with interesting characters. As someone who’s read her more recent books, it’s obvious to tell that, in this novel, she’s still growing as a writer; there are still some rough edges that need polishing. But the groundwork is definitely there.

One of my favorite things about this book is that, while it works with the smaller plots that began in Throne of Glass, it also lays the foundation for bigger overarching plot points for the series as a whole. There’s a lot of promise in this book of exciting things to come.

Bonus Factor: Witches

The four teenage witches from The Craft

Introduced in Crown of Midnight is a new race of Erilean people: the witches. There are multiple clans of said witches, but the first we “meet” is Baba Yellowlegs, a member of the Ironteeth clan. The way Maas describes her is both awesome and horrifying:

“A crown of stars adorned her silver hair, and though her tanned face was saggy and speckled, there was a spark in her brown eyes. … [Her teeth] were razor-sharp, like a fish’s, and made of metal. Of–of iron. … Sure enough, peeking out from beneath her brown robe were saffron-colored ankles.”

So great.

Bonus Factor: Big Reveal

Edward and Bella from Twilight with shocked looks on their faces

There’s a huge reveal at the end of this novel that has major implications for the future books in the series. I honestly can’t remember if, the first time I read this book (it was a while ago), it was a major surprise, or if I’d noticed the foreshadowing the in first book. Either way, it’ll be awesome to see what ripples this causes.

Anti-Bonus Factor: Overreaction

Two little wooden people facing away from each other.

One of Celaena’s major faults is letting her temper get away with her, and making rash judgements that are based more on gut feelings than facts. This is super apparent during a particular scene with Chaol—if you’ve read the book, I’m sure you know the one—in which she judges both him and the situation ridiculously harshly and makes grandiose declarations that she soon (albeit stubbornly) regrets.

Relationship Status: On Your Team

Although I sometimes struggle with the immaturity of your decisions, Book, you know I wouldn’t want to be on any other side but yours when push comes to shove. I’m in this, for the long haul. Just don’t make me regret it.

FTC Full Disclosure: I bought a copy of this book with my own money, and received neither a private dance party with Tom Hiddleston nor money in exchange for this review. Crown of Midnight is available now.

Mandy (she/her) is a manager at a tech company who lives in Austin, TX, with her husband and their dogs. She loves superheroes and pretty much any show or movie with “Star” in the name.