Crown of Midnight: Third Checkpoint

Coming at you a little behind schedule, it’s the third checkpoint for the #TWOTOGCountdown read-a-long! By now I hope that everyone participating has had the time to get up to the end of Chapter 42. If you haven’t, beware of the spoilers below!

When we left off last week, Chaol had just revealed that he had been keeping information from Nehemia and Celaena regarding threats on the Eyllweian (did I spell that right?) princess’s life.

Rushing back to the castle as if she had magic running through her veins, Celaena does not make it back in time to save her friend but goes into such a blind rage she physically threatens Dorian as well as comes within an inch of murdering Chaol – after scratching his face off, that is.

As someone who is not a fan of Chaol, I was happy to see Celaena beat him up. However, I believe that Nehemia was taken from us too soon. There was so much depth and mystery in her character that I think her death would have been more impactful if she had died either at the end of this book or even just later in the series. At the very least, I’m hoping to be introduced to some more ladies for Celaena to befriend if only to try and fill the whole left my Nehemia’s death.

Of course her death prompts some pretty awesome violence from Celaena as she tracks down our old pal, Grave – one of the finalists of the King’s competition in the previous book. Recognizing his style of murder, Celaena goes full assassin mode and get some answers by treating Grave as brutally as he treated the princess.

I loooooved seeing Celaena get truly cut-throat and since I don’t enjoy Chaol, I’m pleased to see that they’re done. (A friend of mine is actually dying over my live commentary to her in which I’ve decided that Chaol’s dad is actually my new best friend because he just showed up and dissed Chaol for an hour.)

But while this section of the book got to the level of violence I was expecting and then some, I also enjoyed learning more about the Fae’s disappearance and the riddles. Although I will say, everyone spent half of the first book commenting on the black rings the King and his goon, Pennington, were wearing and yet Celaena can’t figure out what the riddle means when it mentions three things made of obsidian? Like….


But then again, the rebel uprising everyone is so focused on keep’s mentioning that they’re working with the lost princess of Terrasen, Princess Aelin, and yet no one has figured out who Celaena is.

This is why we don’t let 19-year-olds run a castle, my friends. They’re too busy banging or just being dumb teenagers to focus on the facts that are literally right in front of them.

But with all of that, Celaena is now probably cursed by legit the creepiest witch in the damn world so things are bound to get interesting really fast. Although it would have been neat to know if Baba Yellowlegs (even her name is creepy as hell) could tell who Celaena really was and I would have really liked to know what Celaena’s reaction to Dorian’s questions about magic would have been. But c’est la vie.

Anyway, I look forward to Chaol’s continued downfall while Dorian rises and figures out that he’s probably part demon. Ooh, and I’d itching to know how the King will react when it gets out that Celaena is Princess Aelin, unless she kills him first which would also be a wonderful moment.

What are your predictions for how this one will end? Let me know in the comments below!

Don’t forget to follow @lucieninthestars on Instagram and participate in the photo challenge! There will be prizes!

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Crown of Midnight: Second Checkpoint

It’s the second checkpoint for the #TWOTOGCountdown read-a-long! By now I hope that everyone participating has had the time to get up to the end of Chapter 28. If you haven’t, beware of the spoilers below!

Hello everyone, and welcome to the Roast of Chaol Westfall!

Ugh. Okay. I don’t even know where to start on this one if I’m being 100% honest. I told a friend of mine that I was reading Throne of Glass for the first time and she’s been teasing me with her wondering of how much I’ll have Chaol by the end of this book (and apparently it’s only going to get worse from here) so I knew something was going to happen during this chunk, but I wasn’t sure when it was going to happen.

First off, Chaol just sets off so many red flags for me in this book. He’s too clingy, too invasive, and just otherwise so careless about what Celaena might want that it’s legitimately starting to bug me. I mean, he’s lucky that Celaena is just as incapable of keeping her hands to herself, because if it was me I’d have stabbed him by now. Not to mention that it’s very Edward vs Jacob or Peeta vs Gale in terms of how tacky the love triangle is right now and I just want it to stop!

But the bigger issue with Chaol is that he’s trusting when he shouldn’t be and concerned when he shouldn’t be. Celaena and Nehemia are best friends at this point (and I would honestly rather hear more about that relationship than the hetero-straight romance). If Dorian was getting threats and Celaena was the first one to hear about it, the first person she would tell other than Dorian, himself, would be Chaol. So the fact that he isn’t respecting that friendship is really not cool.

He definitely deserved to be punched in the face by the rebels and I can’t wait to see what Celaena does to him now that she knows her friend might have been killed by the king.

Aside from Chaol and his nonsense, I liked hearing more about Celaena killing everyone in Endovier and even the action sequence of her coming to save Chaol was really awesome. I spent the entire first book waiting for her to be this amazing assassin everyone claims her to be so to even get a glimpse of that in this book made me happy. And also hungry for more.

I liked getting more insight into what Nehemia is going through and even if her being behind the rebel uprising in Rifthold was pretty obvious from the get-go, it was nice to finally learn that she is honestly doing everything she can to not only free her people, but others as well. Her fight with Celaena was brilliant. I love these kind of moral struggles in fantasy and it’s a nice look at the reluctant hero. Nehemia is desperate for help while Celaena is tired of doing everyone else’s bidding. For once in her life, Celaena wants to do what she wants to do without being ordered around or threatened. It’s honestly because of this fight that I really hope Nehemia hasn’t been killed (even if there’s a “yet” that goes with that sentiment) because I want more of that. I want more of the both of them trying to get the other to see their point of view. It’s a thing that I truly love about reluctant heroes in fantasy.

So while the love story is getting on my nerves for the time being (and I look forward to it crumbling apart), and there’s a lot of things happening in the background that I want to know more about now, I’m still enjoying this one a lot more than the first book. The writing so far is a lot tighter and I’m dying to know what’s going to happen to Chaol when Celaena is done with his moronic behind.

How are you liking things so far? Let me know in the comments below!

Don’t forget to follow @lucieninthestars on Instagram and participate in the photo challenge! There will be prizes!


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Crown of Midnight: First Checkpoint

It’s the first checkpoint for the #TWOTOGCountdown read-a-long! By now I hope that everyone participating has had the time to get up to the end of Chapter 14. If you haven’t, beware of the spoilers below!

Crown of Midnight starts off with a bit more of a bang than how I felt Throne of Glass started, and for that I’m thankful. It’s nice for Celaena to have a bit more free-reign and to see her outside of the castle, but it’s nicer to start off the book with her being an assassin.

Or… sort of…

Given her friendship with Nehemia, I’m not surprised that Celaena is playing by her own set of rules, and saving the lives of the people the King wants dead if they’re willing to play her game. At the same time though, parts of her inner thoughts feel a bit soft. She’s a hardened assassin who was/is known as the best in the lands, so why does she have such a hard time with her job all of a sudden?

Not surprisingly, Chaol and Dorian have been acting like children, being not-so-subtly mad at each other (and Celaena) just because they are boys who like the same girl. It’s a plot point I look forward to being done with quickly since it’s really juvenile considering both of them are supposed to be rather mature. I mean, Dorian is the heir to the throne and on the council, while Chaol is the captain of the guard! While Dorian’s upset make at least a little bit of sense, to me, Chaol needs to get over himself. He killed a bad man and is in a position where that is his job and he should have had to kill many men to get it.

Which honestly leads me to the King. What kind of king has children running his court? The council seems to be old men and Dorian, his personal guard is the same age as his son but is also unaware of half of what goes, and his personal assassin is younger than both his son and his guard! I honestly don’t understand this reasoning.

Now, all that being said, I am actually enjoying this book. The writing feels a lot more solid and I’m liking our new friend Archer so far (even if he is a bit of a coward). I look forward to seeing more of the politics game being played outside of the castle as well as inside with the introduction of Dorian’s skeezy cousin, Rolland. I want to know more about who everyone thinks Aelin is (my money’s on Celaena) and what this rebellion is about. I want Nehemia to spill some beans that I know she’s keeping secret. But I think most of all, I want to know if the eyes at the end of our stopping point belong to a certain someone that the fandom is obsessed with.

What are your thoughts so far? Leave a comment!

Don’t forget to follow @lucieninthestars on Instagram and participate in the photo challenge! There will be prizes!

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Have you been taking part in my #twotogcountdown?! Today is the first checkpoint for #crownofmidnight and I am hyped as hell for it! Be sure to check out the blog for the write-up and let me know what you’re thoughts are! 🧡 👑 🧡 Today’s theme is BATTLE TOOLS and while many of my props are in storage, I still have my wrist wraps. Did you know I used to do martial arts? I was quite good but after a concussion during a sparring class I gave it up. I miss it sometimes. What tools would you bring in to battle? 🧡 👑 🧡 #booklr #bookstagram #bookgram #bookstagrammer #bookgrammer #bookphotography #bookphoto #readersofinstagram #reviewersofinstagram #books #book #bibliophile #igreads #igbooks #booklover #throneofglass #sarahjmaas #twotogcountdown #wristwraps #readalong

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Crown of Midnight Read-a-Long

Happy March, everyone! And welcome back to my #TWOTOGCountdown read-a-long! This month we’ll be reading book two, Crown of Midnight, and changing things up a little bit.

Instead of one checkpoint, I’ll be posting a checkpoint once a week to better break up the book and have some fun discussions. Not only that, but the photo challenge will have FOUR challenge prompts instead of one and FOUR winners will receive either an enamel pin or a bookmark that is Throne of Glass related.

The Schedule & The Prompts

Below is the graphic (please feel free to share!) of the reading schedule as well as the photo prompts. Prompts may be done in any order!

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Schedule Prompts
March 1st – 9th:
Beginning – Chapter 14
March 10th – 16th:
Chapter 15 – 28
March 17th – 23rd:
Chapter 29 – 42
March 24th – 30th:
Chapter 43 – End
Fighting Tools
Book & Candles
Brave Heroines
Mini Review

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #TWOTOGCountdown on Twitter and Instagram and be sure to follow me (@WelshLucien / @lucieninthestars) as well as my co-host in this read-a-long A.K. Lee (@aklee_writes)!

Throne of Glass Checkpoint

So we’ve hit the middle of the month and therefore (hopefully) hit the middle of the book! So shall we do a little recap?

So far, Calaena has been rescued from her enslavement to compete in a competition of criminals that will grant the winner freedom from their horrid sentences as well as the title of the King’s Assassin. For someone like Calaena, it’s a walk in the park right? She was born to be an assassin, trained from childhood to do as such. But things are more complicated than that as someone – or something – is killing off the competition…

So far I’m enjoying this a lot more than the first time I attempted to read it and only got a few pages in. Calaena is cool in that she loves parties and dresses as much as she loves punching people’s faces in in a way that almost makes me think of Jude from The Cruel Prince (although the two are very different).

Chaol is super cool and I like seeing him and Dorian (who is bae at this point) compete for Calaena’s attention while also being like “DUDE SHE’S AN ASSASSIN SHE’LL KILL YOU” at each other. They genuinely come across as best friends and I’m really enjoying them both.

In this first half of the book we also got to meet Princess Nehemia and she is amazing! She’s smart, vicious, and passionate while also not having any patience for nonsense. She’s not here to play games because she’s definitely here to get justice for her people who have been so horrendously enslaved, killed, and otherwise mistreated.

As for the other important characters we’ve gotten to meet, I definitely don’t trust the king and I’m impatiently waiting for Cain to just die already. I do like Nox but want more depth before I think I can start caring about him. And, while I hate her, I also feel bad for Kaltain and whatever is going on with her and that gross Duke Perrington.

I look forward to finding out how this ends, now that the stakes of Celaena’s life have been raised with the finding of the tomb deep within in the castle walls. (Personally, I think it means she’s actually Fae and there will be more hints at a series crossover with ACOTAR but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see).

Don’t forget to follow @lucieninthestars on Instagram and participate in the photo challenge! While there won’t be any small prizes this month, there will be next month and I’ll make sure any January entries are included in that draw.full graphic