Empire of Storms is the fifth book of the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas. With war brewing on the horizon, Aelin Galathynius must gather allies to help Terrasen and potentially save the continent from the Valg. Even if it means making amends with old enemies. Elide leaves Morath and attempts to find Aelin while she is hunted by unknown entities. And Manon’s loyalties are about to be tested as her doubts start to overtake her.
The Throne of Glass series is getting adapted into a TV Show by Hulu!! It will be written by Kira Snyder (the 100, Pacific Rim: Maelstrom) and directed by Anna Foerster (Underworld: Blood Wars, Outlander). Weirdly enough the series will be called Queen of Shadows instead of Throne of Glass. I wonder if this means the story will start from the fourth book or (the more likely case) it’s because Throne of Glass doesn’t exactly encapsulate the series as a whole. (i.e. one of my complains about the Queen of Shadows novel).
Oh god, the plot. I have to say that Empire of Storms has the best plot in the Throne of Glass series thus far. Those weave and turns are great. The pacing was superbly done. There was never a dull moment for me. And best of all, everything converges at the end. All the questions that were raised in the start of this novel were answered at the end. Well, most of them. Characters meet up and plot threads are weaved together and it left me wanting more. I can’t wait for book 6 to get here.
The character progression was excellent in this one. Specifically the story surrounding Lorcan and Elide. Their relationship together and their individual character arcs were nice to read about. At this point, I think it’s safe to say that Elide is my favorite character of the series. Lysandra comes in at a close second. Manon’s character development is coming along nicely too. There isn’t a lot of development in this book, but the little development that happens are crucial turning points for her. Can we get a spinoff series of Manon and Elide with Lorcan tagging along, please?
Sidenote: why do I have an image of Lorcan as a barrel chested, full bearded man and Google just gives me pictures of lean, long haired, clean cut dudes? Did I miss a description somewhere?
Oh boy, the romance parts of this book was bad. I mean BAD. I usually have a high threshold of tolerance for bad romances, but some of the relationships seriously felt forced. I just felt like the author was trying to make sure everybody important ended up with somebody important before the end of the series. It just feels unrealistic and immersion breaking because I can feel the author’s hand at work.
And speaking of bad romances. Why are there soooo many “oh my God, I can’t wait to get into her/his pants” moments? And then the actual sex scenes themselves… I felt my eyes rolling involuntarily every time it happens. At points, I’m wondering if I’m reading an erotic novel or a YA fantasy novel. But hey, maybe it has something to do with the TV series being called the next Game of Thrones. Maybe the author is trying to make up for it, eh?
Is it just me or is Aelin’s part of the novel the worst? Every time we get to her, I just want to skip past and read about Elide or Manon. It gets better as the novel progresses, and might I dare say some of her actions are justified by the end of it, but I already have a poor opinion of her and it really doesn’t help Heck, it even got me wanting a Chaol chapter. Oh, by the way, he’s not in the book if you’re wondering. He’ll feature in an upcoming novella.
Speaking of novellas, it’s definitely worth it to read the prequel novellas if you still haven’t done it yet. It won’t spoil your experience if you don’t (I haven’t read it and it didn’t spoil mine) but there are characters in this book that appear in the novella and certain events that happen in the novella are mentioned that might leave you slightly confused.
The end is coming! I struggled with Queen of Shadows and the beginning of Empire of Storms had me wondering if I should continue the series, but as the story moved along, I got more and more excited about the direction the story is headed. I’m glad I stuck around.