“Throne of Glass” by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)(Author: Sarah J. Maas) + (Year: 2012) + (Goodreads)


If you have been following my blog for some time, you would know that I have a special place in my heart for YA novels. If you haven’t, there it is. If I have a reader’s block, or I just want to read something that I expect to like, I will choose YA.

After I got fed up with Atlas Shrugged, I decided to take a break and read something light and nice. Even more so, I chose a series that has received a lot of positive reviews in the last few years.

I would say that Throne of Glass is largely overhyped. I would not put it at the bottom of the YA books I’ve read, but it’s definitely not good enough, in my opinion, to be placed so high up, either. With 378 339 ratings and an average of 4.23, it stands as overhyped through and through.

My biggest issue with this book was the main character. Celaena is the single most self-involved character that I’ve read about. What is worse is that unlike other similar characters, in which that is a bad quality and is supposed to be noticed and disliked, I don’t have a drop of doubt that Sarah J. Maas thinks that Celaena is perfect as she is. Well… don’t be fooled.

The first 30% of Throne of Glass are Celaena talking about herself and bragging to no one in particular. She is beautiful, she’s strong, she’s the best, she’s the fastest, the deadliest, the smartest, the most clever, etc. etc. etc. Celaena literally takes everything every other character says and in her head argues that she’s better in it. “Oh, that lady is beautiful!” – “No, I’m more beautiful”. “You are beautiful.” – “Not only that, but I’m also the deadliest assassin, beat that!”. “You are the deadliest assassin!” – “And I’m also super beautiful, you loser.” She was really hard to stand, honestly.


And coming back to the fact that she’s the deadliest assassin in the world yadda-yadda, she talks a lot, but she kills just once in the entire book and the rest is just bragging. Every character in the book has heard of her and she is super scary, yet she has the chance to kill an evil monster and she doesn’t.

While we are at it, Celaena also happens to spend her days reading, play the piano masterfully and be just 18 years old! Because you can learn how to kill a person in 12804 different ways, while also reading and playing the piano.


The other characters that are more prominent in the book are prince Dorian and Chaol, the chief of the royal guard. One is pretty and likes Celaena and the other one is strong and likes Celaena. You get where I’m going? Both of them severely lack personality, so that’s about what we know about the two of them. There are very minor details revealed, because, after all, who cares what kind of people they really are, Celaena is beautiful and deadly, right?!?

The things that I did like about the book were the general setting and the magical elements. If the author starts paying more attention to those, I can see a pretty interesting story forming. The Wyrdmarks plot was by far the best story of in the book and I was actually interested to read more about it.


“Wonder Woman: Warbringer” by Leigh Bardugo

Wonder Woman: Warbringer (DC Icons, #1)(Author: Leigh Bardugo) + (Year: 2017) + (Goodreads)


Let’s start off with me admitting that I was prejudiced about this book. After so much Wonder Woman over-saturation, I expected to be bored by Warbringer. Also, as I didn’t really read the summary, I thought this will be a usual take on the story which is already familiar to us thanks to the movie.

Color me surprised!

Wonder Woman: Warbringer does start with Diana on Themyscira, but she is not lured away from the island by the prospect of saving Steve and the world, but by the idea of her first-ever quest, which involves a young girl – the descendant of Helen of Troy, the original Warbringer, and the possible end of the world by the hands of the vengeful war gods and the humans.


At first I was not sure where the entire Alia story was going, but it turned out to be a very charming twist of traditional mythology. I quite enjoyed the fact that Bardugo took the Greek myths so seriously and embedded them in the story far beyond the mere origin of the Amazons. In fact, this book reminded me more of the Percy Jackson books than it did of the traditional Wonder Woman lore and I say that with all of my affection. I felt a pang of nostalgia remembering the feeling of being excited by the ancient gods and myths and monsters – something I haven’t felt for a really long time.

The part of the story I didn’t enjoy as much was the plot twist itself. While I expected something similar, because it was obviously bound to happen from the start, I didn’t see that particular ending happening. It was logical, about that I have nothing contrary to say, however, it just seemed a bit… unnecessarily naive. The character who turned out to be the villain seemed to stand no real chance to win and so the stakes seemed so low that I didn’t even break a sweat worrying about the well-being of the heroes. Yeah, certain bad things that I cannot mention because of spoilers did happen, but nothing less than the ending was expected.

This kind of also made me consider how much more interesting it would be if we had a darker, more somber version of Wonder Woman out there. I did enjoy this book, as mentioned above, but isn’t it true that The Dark Knight, a much broodier and scary version of the previous Batman movies, is also the best one?


Bonus round: Diana speaks so much in Bulgarian. I couldn’t not be amused. But even more so by the fact that the Bulgarian guy she speaks to doesn’t really react much, he’s just “Eh”. A real Bulgarian would set up a table, bring rakia, make a salad and call all of the other Bulgarians in the region to meet the new person.

“Deadpool, Vol. 3: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” by Brian Posehn

Deadpool, Volume 3: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly(Author: Brian Posehn) + (Year: 2013) + (Goodreads)


It took me a while to write this review, huh?! As in, I read the book 3 months ago.

I don’t think I want to continue with Deadpool. I’ve generally kind of given up on superhero comic books, and if I did continue, I don’t think he would be the one that I would choose.

Deadpool just makes me very confused. I always thought the Deadpool books were supposed to be funny, but in reality, they are just depressing and sad. Deadpool is a totally underrated human being and I can’t fathom the reasons for that. I know that sometime in his past he did bad things, but all that I’ve read about him says otherwise. He’s not really purposefully bad, he just kind of doesn’t have the constant dilemma of “Should I or shouldn’t I hurt bad guys”, which I, personally, think would be helpful for all superheroes. If you have the power to stop evil for good, why not do it? Oh, right, so that I can come back after 3 volumes and kill more people.

This volume was the most sad and depressing one out of the three that I read. And that was due to obvious reasons, that I shall not mention because of the large amount of spoilers. Nevertheless, I felt like even after learning Deadpool’s deepest, saddest secrets, the other heroes weren’t all that moved. Which made me believe Deadpool is considered an asshole for the sake of the existence of an asshole superhero and for no other reason.

“Wonder Woman, Vol. 1: The Lies” by Greg Rucka

Wonder Woman Vol. 1: The Lies(Author: Greg Rucka) + (Year: 2017) + (Goodreads)


So… this was kind of mediocre. I had high hopes because I’ve started liking Wonder Woman a lot lately, but this comic book was nothing special at all, to be honest.

First of all, I think that there was an over-saturation of Wonder Woman this year, because this is the second of three things about her that came out that I personally know of, the movie, this comic book, and the Leigh Bardugo novel from the DC Icons series.

And what I don’t like about this fact is that they all kind of start the same and continue with minor differences.

Of course, the medium of all three is different, and yet, I started feeling the repetitiveness.

Out of this volume, I mostly enjoyed the origin story of Wonder Woman, which I was more or less familiar with, but I was confused by the other parts of the volume, which had no background whatsoever, so I felt kind of lost at certain points. This made me think it would have been better if we saw more of Wonder Woman’s near past, instead of the Themyscira story again and again.

The art… Well… not my cup of tea. Not that it was not pretty or anything, but it was not what I usually like. Sure enough, it had this superhero comic book style that to me seems kind of rushed and like not enough was invested in it. Wonder Woman herself looked very manly and not her usual beautiful self. And it also struck me that while Black Magick and Wonder Woman (both by Rucka), have different illustrators, all the female characters kind of look the same, despite the fact that the art is generally different.

While I feel on the fence about reading the next volumes, I have this feeling that I will not.


“I Served the King of England” by Bohumil Hrabal

I Served the King of England(Author: Bohumil Hrabal) + (Year: 1971) + (Goodreads)

(Around the World: Czech Republic)


I bought this book during my trip to Prague as part of my project to get a book or two in each new country I visit. Now, this is not my first Czech book, but I wanted to try a new Czech author nevertheless.

In my opinion, one of the best things about the book was actually the foreword. Unfortunately, I don’t have the book right now, so I can’t mention the author of the foreword, but they wrote a very informative, interesting and engaging analysis of both “I Served the King of England“, and Hrabal’s literature in general. Not knowing the author, it really helped me see some tendencies in his writing and in the themes he uses.

The book itself was not exactly to my liking. The story was rather interesting, but the atmosphere was very tight and suffocating. The main character was such a narrow-minded little man that his world was equally as small and claustrophobic. His experiences, even the ones he was most proud of and most happy about, always had a pinch of wrongness and just this general feeling about something dirty and repulsive happening. For example, as you can see in the cover of the book, he liked to put flowers in the pubic hair of the women he slept with. But those women were either prostitutes, or his Nazi-to-the-bone wife, and there was something very unpleasant and private about reading about his joy from this action.

I feel like this is something that often happens in European literature, and especially that of the ex-Communist countries. While in American literature even murder and gore are kind of shiny in description, in European literature, there is this sense of the author wanting to create shock in the reader through showing the reality in the most vulgar way possible. It is a thing I have always noticed in in every piece of art in Bulgaria – be it literature, movies, paintings, there is always sex. But it is not appealing, erotic sex. It’s always the kind of description of sex which makes you feel uncomfortable and in need of a hot shower and a lot of scrubbing.

This is how I felt while reading this book. And spoiler alert for my next Czech book – The Joke, – same thing there.

One thing which was mentioned in the foreword of the book which I couldn’t help but notice later on, was the fact that the character is always in need of proving himself and he is in a desperate need of attention and achieving every physical element of happiness and obtaining every material proof of success. While in character he is a spineless worm, in aspiration, he wants, and even briefly manages, to be rich and famous.

Setting everything about the story aside, Hrabal, undeniably, has a very good writing style. The descriptions he uses are very poetical and thought through. He guides the reader into his world and helps him see everything through exactly the right prism.

“I knew for certain that this girl could never be happy, but that her life would be sadly beautiful, and that life with her would be both an agony and a fulfillment for a man.”