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English teacher interested in language and culture, and also in fiction using magic, myth, folklore and the supernatural. Now teaching part-time in a Leicester Upper School (ages 14-19) and also writing for children, teens and teachers.

Monday, 2 July 2012

The Assassin and the Pirate Lord: Throne of Glass Novella I

This is the first of the prequel novellas for Throne of Glass, each of which relates an episode in Celaena Sardothien's life before the novel. This instalment is concerned mostly with honour and morality, establishing Celaena as a character with strong morals (somewhat of a tall order, since she is an assassin). The Amazon blurb says:

On a remote island in a tropical sea, Celaena Sardothien, feared assassin, has come for retribution. She's been sent by the Assassin's Guild to collect on a debt they are owed by the Lord of the Pirates. But when Celaena learns that the agreed payment is not in money, but in slaves, her mission suddenly changes - and she will risk everything to right the wrong she's been sent to bring about.
I found this to be a great little read, which snatched and held my attention. I read these the wrong way round (the novel first), so it's impossible to know for sure what it would be like to read this first, but I really enjoyed 'seeing' an additional area of the novel's world, and some of Celaena's past, and believe that it would serve to introduce these effectively for those managing to get things in the right order.

Her character is also well established here, and this is something I felt was a strength of the novel. I loved this arrogant girl assassin! OK, she can be aggravatingly arrogant, but that's fairly normal for highly talented teens, which is essentially what she is. As this novella also shows, she has a keen sense of what is a step too far in moral terms, and she can be compassionate. She also has a backstory which explains some of her attributes, and this novella contributes some pieces to that jigsaw too.

Overall, as a Kindle novella at under a pound, this is a fab addition - or introduction - to the Throne of Glass world, which I would recommend for fantasy fans.

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