Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas Spoiler Free Review: EPIC, BADASS & OFF THE CHARTS

September 4, 2015 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | 5 stars, Books, Reviews

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas Spoiler Free Review: EPIC, BADASS & OFF THE CHARTSQueen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #4
Published by Bloomsbury UK on September 1, 2015
Source: Publisher
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
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Sarah J. Maas's New York Times bestselling Throne of Glass series reaches new heights in this sweeping fourth volume.Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she's at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past . . .She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen's triumphant return.Celaena’s epic journey has captured the hearts and imaginations of millions across the globe. This fourth volume will hold readers rapt as Celaena’s story builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.

This is a spoiler-free review for the book and the series. 

Sarah J. Maas you have done it again. You have managed to tease out every emotion from the human spectrum with Queen of Shadows. Fear, for the characters’ safety. Horror, at the monsters at Morath. Courage, for a disabled slave. Happiness, at characters reunited. Loneliness, for those being pushed away. Pain. Love. Humility. Sadness, upon reaching the end of the book.

This book will make you feel as you’ve never felt before. With every word, with the bare existence of these pages, you will be transported into the world of Erilea. Where wyverns live. Where magic has been disabled. Where fae warriors with fierce loyalty will survive. Where a new Queen will rise from the ashes and bring down vengeance, justice and hope for the people of Adarlan.

“For her friends, for her family, she would gladly be a monster. For Rowan, for Dorian, for Nehemia, she would debase and degrade and ruin herself. She knew they would have done the same for her.” 

Every single character here is well developed, full of depth and emotion. Celaena is every bit the cocky, confident assassin that she is, but here she brings SO MUCH MORE. She will make you proud. Her secrets can be frustrating, but they are only for the good of her friends, who she protects with fierce loyalty. She frustrates her fae companions to no end with her independence and risks she takes to her safety. I loved how she found a female friend in Lysandra. Their teasing, banter and support for each other was amazing. Also Celaena is every bit the badass assassin that she’s been trained as, as she takes down a Valg commander in a fight. Celaena is every bit as vain and endearing as she can be, with her appreciation of book, food, finery.

Rowan and Aedion are super sexy fae warriors and I just loved their fierce loyalty and how they would go to the lengths of the world to protect Celaena. The banter and pure connection she had with both of them was amazing!

Back in Adarlan, Celaena gets reunited with her past. But after Sam, after the events of Heir of Fire between Chaol, Sorscha and Dorian, everything has changed. How will she face Arobynn, the King of Assassins and her past mentor? How will she face Chaol and Dorian? This book, is what I wanted Heir of Fire to be. The characters reunited, is every bit as complex and powerful as you would expect it to be.

“”Maybe I don’t want to be that person anymore,”. he said. That person – that stupidly loyal, useless person – had lost everything. His friend, the woman he loved, his position, his honor. Lost everything, with only himself to blame.” 

I don’t know who you’ve been shipping in this series so far but it becomes clear who Celaena belongs with. That unending loyalty, love and respect for one another. MY SHIP. MY SHIPPP. SO MUCH SEXUAL FRUSTRATION. These two tease each other incessantly and blind to everyone’s else’s knowledge of their love for one another, will DRAGGG things out on getting together. My heart just about fell out of my chest at their teasing for one another. SO MANY FEELS. Just WOW I SHIP IT. I SHIP IT A LOT. A fair warning, one of your ships may fall here.

Manon Blackbeak, the Wing Leader and Heir to the Blackbeak clan really expanded the world of Adarlan. With her wyverns, command of a witch clan and defense of the Duke’s forces, you will find out just how big of a role she plays here. Everything comes together and she surprised me – we all know she’s completely and utterly RUTHLESS and won’t take no for an answer, but she shows a shred of humility, which makes me think she’d be a powerful ally.

“They had walked out of darkness and pain and despair together. They were still walking out of it. So that smile…It struck him stupid every time he saw it and realized it was for him.” 


Queen of Shadows is absolutely everything. Everything I wanted it to be and more. It really manipulated my emotions and I found myself shouting at the book and crying at times. It was powerful, filled with action, intensity and so much awesome banter. It’d be hard for EVERY OTHER BOOK to match up to this one, ever.

Rating: 5 out of 5 (SIX STARS IF I COULD) 


Thank you Bloomsbury Australia for sending me a review copy! 

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Jeann is an Aussie YA blogger and mum who loves to read and recommend books! You can usually find me fangirling about books on my various social media channels including Tiktok@happyindulgence, Instagram and Youtube.

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63 responses to “Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas Spoiler Free Review: EPIC, BADASS & OFF THE CHARTS

  1. Lauren

    I finally finished this book and holy shit its soo good isn't it?! 🙂 I agree with a lot of what you've said. The only downside I thought this book had was that I struggled to understand Chaol's personality during the first half of this book, he seemed very different.
    My recent post Read Play Blog: Surprising Games

  2. I'm shipping what you're shipping and it's happy ships all round. I loved the romance, it was pants on fire type of intense and holy crap it was incredible! There's something about Aedion that just doesn't sit well with me. He's loyal, but there seems to be an inappropriate love there on his part if you know what I mean. It just seems a bit weird. But Celaena, oh how I love that girl fiercely! She's by far the best heroine YA has ever seen. Hands down. Brilliant review Jeann, you make me want to reread it again already <3
    My recent post Welcome back to Scion… The Mime Order

    • I KNOW RIGHT. It was just so intense and just so right you know? Yeah, he is a bit touchy feely for a cousin, but then again Celaena and him had a really close relationship when they are younger. I totally agree, she is the best heroine EVER! I just love SJMaas's female characters.

    • Oh I totally agree, I kind of was bored with her pov in HoF because I wanted more Chaol/Celaena but oh man, things really got epic here din't they? I shipped them so hard myself! Thank you so much Olivia <3

  3. cristinasbookreviews

    Stunning review and I couldn't agree more! And kept thinking about the sexual frustration as well! *fans self* And I was totally okay, more than okay, with the way everything turned out. If you check on goodreads, not everyone handled everything well at all. *shrugs*
    To wait for the next book will be absolute torture!!!
    My recent post Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass #4) by Sarah J. Maas

    • Oh my gosh that sexual frustration was so intense huh? I just LOVED how everything turned out as well! I have to check goodreads to see it all o_o I know people were a bit sore about their ship!

  4. aentee @ read at midnight

    I am not even 20% through and the feels is killing me – ROWAN HASN'T EVEN APPEARED YET. *CRIES* Buttt Chaol and Aelin has more chemistry than Chaol and Celaena ever did IMO XD I just like the angst! There's so much more intrigue and plot and emotions heightening in QoS, if it continues with such pacing it will be my favourite of the series!
    My recent post Book Review: Bone Gap

    • HEHEHHE you said Buttt Chaol *laughs* /maturity. Anyway, yesss there is just so much angst and stuff! I totally agree! Man there is just so much emotions! I think you will love it Aentee, sounds like you are enjoying it. It\’s definitely my favourite, followed by the Crown of Midnight and THe Assassin\’s Blade!

    • YESSSS it wasn\’t my original ship but I just LOVED how it turned out – it was just so much more epic and so many emotions running wild. Definitely worth it!!!

  5. Skimmed your review because I am reading this right now and I don't want to be accidentally spoiled! 😛 But yesss, so far I've been on a wide range of emotions since reading this book. I'm like 60% in but wow, I think I laughed and I cried already (THAT GRAVEYARD SCENE). I'm not really a big fan of the ship that sails here, but I do like the loyalty they have for one another. There are some stuff that I thought dragged a bit, but other than that, this has been a solid 3.5 read 😀 Maybe up to a four once I finish it and shit happens!
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  6. GHA, I can't even actually READ your review. I just got the book today; I plan on CONSUMING it and then reading reviews later. Is that backwards? Anywho, I skimmed briefly, and I'm glad to see you thoroughly enjoyed it! 😀

  7. redizabzh

    Reading your review, I want to stop being reasonable and following that stupid to-read list and dive back into that series !

  8. GAHHHH you have made me SO EXCITED to read this. I am so scared about my ship though, Jeann. SO SCARED. I may cry. Well, I am sure I will cry, it's a Sarah J Maas book for goodness sake, but you know what I mean 😉 If I didn't have to get up super early tomorrow, I think I'd likely start it immediately. THANK YOU for this- I was nervous after some iffy reviews, but you have made my day with your fabulous one!! 😀
    My recent post This Week At Midnight (77) + Giveaway

  9. thebigfatf

    OMG!!! I totally didn't mind that my ship sunk because this one was SO MUCH BETTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Amazing review and SPOT ON ABOUT EVERYTHING!!! I just need the fifth book now or I'll DIE. At least, ACOTAR #2.

  10. I would give it a million stars if I could. This book, gah! ALL THE EMOTIONS. It was just epic and perfect and GAH! SO MUCH LOVE. I can't believe we've passed the halfway mark for the series now…it's sad to think there are only 2 more books left. *cries*

  11. Vane J.

    I am currently reading this book, and while I am not loving it as much as you did, I can see the characters are better here. I love Celaena and Rowan, and I am having problems with a CERTAIN character, but it's still a good book. I'm glad to hear you liked this! 🙂
    My recent post Review: Everything, Everything

  12. I have no idea of how to even start to write my own review of Queen of Shadows!! You've done a fantastic job of keeping yourself spoiler free but all I can still manage to want to talk about is all that happened and theorize about the possible meanings of things, so not so spoiler free!

    • Man it was just freaking amazing!! There are so many feels for the characters I swear. I loved the girl friendship – Celaena really needs one!

  13. Grace @ RebelMommyBB

    I still haven't read this series and every day I feel I need to pick it up – So glad you loved this one! I feel sometimes it is hard for a series to maintain it's quality over time. Glad that wasn't the case – Great review!
    My recent post Review ~ Has to Be Love

  14. amanda_gray

    I still haven't read Heir of Fire, and I'm so conflicted with everything that's happening. I'm not even bothered about the ship, I'm bothered about all the bad things that are being said.. Gah, I'm so nervous! This is a great review though Jeann, great in fact! 🙂
    My recent post Book Review – Demon Road by Derek Landy

    • Oh mannnn I think lots of people are mainly bothered about the ship and how different Celaena is in this one…but yeah, lots of love or hate it!

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