Summary: Celaena Sardothien is Adarlan’s most feared assassin. As part of the Assassin’s Guild, her allegiance is to her master, Arobynn Hamel, yet Celaena listens to no one and trusts only her fellow killer-for-hire, Sam. In these action-packed novellas – together in one edition for the first time – Celaena embarks on five daring missions. They take her from remote islands to hostile deserts, where she fights to liberate slaves and seeks to avenge the tyrannous. But she is acting against Arobynn’s orders and could suffer an unimaginable punishment for such treachery. Will Celaena ever be truly free? Explore the dark underworld of this kick-ass heroine to find out. (Via Goodreads.)
Review: I think everyone who reads my blog knows that I am a Sarah J. Maas fanatic at this point. I loved Throne of Glass, I simply adored Crown of Midnight, basically I am obsessed with Celaena Sardothien! So once I had finished Crown of Midnight I immediately ordered The Assassin’s Blade and then I left it sit on my shelf for almost a month. But finally I cracked it open and I can assure you now; the obsession continues.
The Assassin’s Blade is made up of five novellas all set before Throne of Glass and they tell the tale of how Celaena wound up in the prison camp Endovier and it is wonderful. I was worried when I started reading it that without the presence of Chaol and Dorian the story would fall a little flat but I didn’t need to worry at all. The Assassin’s Blade fleshes out characters that we had only mentions of in the novels and Maas brings them to life so wonderfully that I know I will be re-reading the novellas again and again!
The characters are stunning. I adored Arobynn Hammel, who to me is nearly more villainous than the King in the Glass Castle as he presents himself as a friend and a protector to Celaena but is nothing more than a manipulative, abusive captor and I found him so fascinating and I am very much looking forward to him appearing in the upcoming novels.
Maas also introduced us to Sam Cortland in these novellas who we know from the books as Celaena’s doomed assassin lover. Knowing his fate before I began reading I didn’t think I would become so emotionally invested in Sam and his relationship with Celaena but I did. I really, really did. He was a wonderful puppy of a character. A dangerous, hot, adorable puppy and I am so sad he had to die.
I enjoyed most of the novellas, perhaps with the exception of the Assassin and the Healer which was a little boring. It did show and give a better understanding of Celaena’s character but I definitely preferred the novellas that were set in Rithfold and focused on Celaena’s relationships with Arobynn and Sam.
I can’t find fault with anything that Maas does. I adore her characters, her world, her writing and her pacing. I would definitely recommend picking this up. It can be read before or after the series.