Sarah J. Maas has blown me away this year! First, ‘A Court of Mist and Fury’ and now, ‘Empire of Storms’. Everything she writes, I devour. It’s like the woman is on fire!
This series just keeps getting better and better. It took a little time for me to refresh my memory on who was who and where things left off. However, it didn’t take long for everything to come back to me. The very beginning of the book moved a little slower, which worked out well, since I needed to bring myself back up to speed with the storyline.
With a full cast of characters, ‘Empire of Storms’ provides something for just about everyone. I am a sucker for a great love story and there was plenty of romance in this fifth book. Likewise, there was no shortage of action, magic or adventure. There were plenty of twists and turns along the way, keeping me on the edge of my seat. I won’t give anything away, but I was amazed by the complexities of this plot and the secret schemes that were gradually revealed.
Although I’ve struggled with Celaena’s/Aelin’s polyamory in earlier books, it wasn’t an issue this time around. Her relationship with Rowan seems to be more than just a passing fling. I’ve finally come to peace with the fact that forever may not be in the cards for her and Dorian.
Chaol is noticeably absent from this book. Honestly, I didn’t really miss him. I can’t say that I ever forgave him for his betrayal of Celaena. Unlike many of my friends, I say “good riddance” to Chaol. I’m sure he’ll reappear before this saga is over though. Maybe he’ll even redeem himself. I’m not holding my breath though.
Whereas Chaol’s presence is nonexistent, other characters play a more central role this time around. Manon Blackbeak is a major player in this book and has become a new favorite character of mine. I absolutely loved hearing her story. Like Celaena/Aelin, this is one fierce lady! She is compassionate and incredibly strong. Her ongoing battle with her wicked grandmother had me utterly captivated. I loved every minute of her story.
Dorian, Maeve, Aedion, Lysandra and a full cast of supporting characters definitely kept this complex storyline moving along. There were many moving parts, but everything came together seamlessly. I have no doubt that there are still many more surprises in store.
After a “slower” introduction, the story moves swiftly. In fact, I thought this book was the most fast-paced of all of the books in the series, so far. Packed with action and adventure, I was completely obsessed with this story from start to finish. Given that the Audible edition was over 25 hours long, it’s really saying something when a book manages to hold my rapt attention until the end. Even after I had finished, I only wanted more.
Like other fans of this series, I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of the next book. Supposedly, the next book will be the grand finale. This book certainly did a fabulous job of building suspense and laying the groundwork for an epic showdown. With the huge upset at the end of this book, I am dying to see where things will go from here. I absolutely loved it!