My rating: 4 of 5 stars
While I still enjoyed this book, I definitely noticed more flaws during my reread than I had initially picked up on. The author started writing this story when she was in high school and college. The writing itself isn’t very strong in the first book and there are moments when you’re reading that it sounds like the text hasn’t been edited since the initial draft in high school. That’s not to say that it is poor writing, it’s not, but it definitely feels more juvenile in quality than her more recent works.
I also was more cognizant of Celaena’s personality during this reread. It was SJM’s use of dialogue words that stood out to me the most. Celaena’s personality came across as much more petulant, frivolous and angry than I originally realized. Most of the time her responses were described as snapping, yelling, shouting, etc. I decided to listen to the audiobook for this reread, which compounded the problem because the narrator made Celaena sound annoyed/angry all the time (even if she was saying thank you or giving a compliment.)
I’m still a fan of the world-building in this novel and always want to see more of it. Having read the series before, I also notice subtle nods and hints to things that happen later in the book. It is nice to be in the know and realize how SJM laid the foundation for future events.
You can read my original review here.