Title: Assassin’s Blade
Series: Throne of Glass Novellas
Author: Sarah J Maas
Release Date: March 4, 2014
Description: 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.
Thoughts: I’m late to the game in ready this series. Once I had decided to start reading it I wanted to start with this one because the novellas are prequels and give you some insight to Celaena and the people she had encountered before Throne of Glass and why she was where she was at the beginning of Throne of Glass. Be forewarned that there could be spoilers in this if you haven’t read this yet.
The first one is The Assassin and the Pirate Lord. Sam and Celaena are going on a missions for their master, Arobynn. They were told little about the deal. It turned out to be a slave trade. Celaena comes up with a plan to put a stop to the trade. I really enjoyed this one. It was a lot of introduction but I was drawn in to Sam and Celaena.
The Assassin and the Healer: This one is kind of short. Celaena is in a town of Innish. She is on her way to a month of training as part of her punishment for interfering with the slave trade. She considers not going & fleeing to start over. Celaena saved the barmaid Yrene from mercenaries. Celaena teaches Yrene some self-defense moves & tells her to teach others. After they essentially helped each other Celaena left her gold to get her out of the town. Celaena boarded her ship hoping Yrene would leave & heal the world.
I wasn’t as much of a fan of this one. I felt like it kind of dragged on. I know it was kind of a stepping stone between stories but I was kind of ready for it to be over.
The Assassin and the Desert: Celaena makes it to the island & the master puts her through a surprise test before being willing to say she can stay. Once he does she meets her roommate, Ansel. At first the most grueling part is trying to run 3 miles. Then they get attacked but are instructed that they can’t kill anyone. The next morning Ansel is sent to deliver a message & she asks Ceaelna to go with her. Ansel reveals a horrific up bringing from before her training. Celaena wonders around the market waiting on Ansel & finds a merchant that had spider silk that cost him 20 years. He asked her to be the warrior to get his years back. Timing is off for both though. Ansel gets Celaena to help take 2 horses. Ansel admits her real story to Celaena & that justice will be served. There is a midsummer festival & Celaena dances with Ilias. Ansel drugged Celaena & left a note that Master wanted Celaena to leave. She did but then started to doubt that the approval note was actually from Master. Celaena & Ansel fought & Celaena spared Ansel’s life. Master gave her the real approval note along with money to help in the debt she owes to free herself.
This one picked up a little more from the previous story. Even though it was still a little slow I was drawn deeper into Celaena’s world which I liked. I wanted her to make it through this so she could go back to Arobynn. I was hoping she would go and stand up for herself.
The Assassin and the Underworld: Celaena arrived home to present the note and money to Arobynn and only did the note because he began to apologize to her. He gave her gifts to get her forgiveness. She is leaving him hanging for now on if she accepts. Sam said that in order for Arobynn to get his forgiveness he made him promise to never lay a hand on her again. Arobynn offered Celaena a job & said she could keep all the money from it. After talking with Sam she tells him to help her & she would give him half the money. He accepts the offer to help but tells her to keep the money. Celaena does the job and then finds that Arobynn lied about the documents and the person she killed. She paid off Sam’s debt and they moved out to a place she had bought when she first arrived back.
This is one of my favorites. It was great to see Celaena stand up to Arobynn.
The Assassin and the Empire: Celaena knew that it would be good for her & Sam too move but she knows that if they don’t get Arobynn’s approval then they will never get work. Arobynn agreed but with a price. A price that she agrees to but Sam isn’t happy about it. Sam finds them a contract to get them money to replace what she is paying Arobynn. Celaena doesn’t like it because it is to take out the biggest crime Lord who is heavily guarded. Sam went to take care of his part of the contract and never returned. Arobynn showed & simply told Celaena that he was sorry. Celaena wouldn’t believe that Sam was dead until she saw his body. When she did she covered his body with her cloak & layed with him. She snuck out of her room because Arobynn had locked her door from the outside. She wanted revenge that she delivered herself. Farran drugged her with the same drug he used on Sam. She was set up and sentenced to work in the salt mines. Arobynn had set her & Sam up because he didn’t share his belongings which is how he viewed Celaena and the others.
This one killed me. I’m holding out hope that Celaena will cross paths with Arobynn again in one of the other books so she can set things right.