“The world will be saved and remade by dreamers…”- Aelin, Empire of Storms
Synopsis via Goodreads: The long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those don’t.
As the kingdoms of Erilea fracture around her, enemies must become allies if Aelin is to keep those she loves from falling to the dark forces poised to claim her world. With war looming on all horizons, the only chance for salvation lies in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear.
Aelin’s journey from assassin to queen has entranced millions across the globe, and this fifth installment will leave fans breathless. Will Aelin succeed in keeping her world from splintering, or will it all come crashing down?
Queen of Shadows left me at the edge of my seat in 2015 after things ended with all hell breaking loose and I was anxious to see what would happen next as Aelin Galathynius and her court made their way back to Terrasen to reclaim her throne and take down the evil Valg King. Needless to say, Empire of Storms did not disappoint. I’m still struggling with a book hangover because the ending of Empire of Storms left me in pieces!
Empire of Storms picks up where Queen of Shadows left off as Aelin and her court makes their way north to Terrasen in hopes of gaining support from her people to fight the Valg King, Erawan. But she is turned away as the lords of Terrasen, who do not believe that Aelin is fit to be a Queen, and Aelin and her court must find another way to gain support in order to defeat the Valg King. First things first, IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THE ASSASSIN’S BLADE, PLEASE DO SO BEFORE READING THIS BOOK AS IT WILL HELP YOU TO BETTER UNDERSTAND THIS BOOK. Also, secondary characters in the novellas make appearances in this book. Empire of Storms is split into two parts and majority of the first half of this book is plotting. Aelin and her court, which comprises of Rowan, Lysandra, and Aedion, are trying to reach out to other leaders across the lands to get them to join their army. There’s also a great deal of politics involved as some leaders are not willing to lend a hand without getting something in return. I am not big on the politics in fantasy books, but what I really enjoyed in the first part of Empire of Storms was Manon Blackbeak’s plot line. She learns the about who she really is and she makes some choices that stir up a whole new set of problems and in turn enemies become allies. I’ve always admired Manon’s fierce and fearless personality, but I also found it difficult connecting with her character, UNTIL THIS BOOK! I love her character even more after this installment and I feel like she’s about to do some great things in the final book. We also follow two secondary characters, Lorcan Salvaterre and Elide Lochan who are both on a journey with the same destination, but they just don’t know it.
The second half of the book was HANDS DOWN MY FAVORITE PART of this book. The fighting, the revelations, the plot twists, the OMG, WTF ENDING! The second half of the book is where the action is at. Both the Valg King and the Fae-Queen, Maeve, are after Aelin and the keys in her possessions which means Aelin and the others are constantly fighting off the enemies. A lot of the stories and legends told throughout this series come into play in Empire of Storms and everything finally falls into place. I honestly thought I had things figured out, but Maas pulled the rug from right out under me and left me speechless. If the revelations made in this book are meant to happen the way we are told, then I fear for lives of all my favorite characters. I’m still not over the fact at how things played out in the ending. But I have hope, LOTS OF HOPE, that things will work out for these characters. Aelin Galathynius was born to rule and I will not rest until I see her take her rightful throne as Queen of Terrasen.
Let’s talk characters, ships, and awkward sexy times. I am upset that Chaol and Nesryn did not make appearances in this installment. I was hoping to see how their relationship would develop and I wanted to learn more about Nesryn. Aelin was badass as ever and she made so many sacrifices in the end. She has come such a long way from Celaena Sardothien and has achieved so much. Damn my hearts breaks for her because she doesn’t deserve all the shit she’s been through. Her and Rowan are a power couple and I love seeing them together. Rowan is so willing to help his Queen in anyway and I love how devoted he is to her. I already said that Manon was great in this installment and it looks like she and Dorian have a budding romance and I’m interested to see where things go. Quite frankly, if this ship doesn’t sail I wouldn’t care because Manon is badass on her own and doesn’t need a man to save her. Dorian has basically lost everything in this installment, but he still has his spirit and he’s willing to fight for his people no matter what. I’m hoping that he finds someway to rebuild his city and one day become the great ruler we all know he will be. We also have Elide and Lorcan and I’ll admit, Elide surprised me the most in this book. I didn’t think her character would play such an important role in the development of this book, but she does and I’m excited to see where things go with her and The Thirteen. Also, I hate Lorcan. That is all. Now to my faves, my precious children, Aedion and Lysandra. Lysandra is my favorite character throughout this series and she just pulled out all the tricks in this book. Ghost Leopard was slaying and I was cheering her on. Aedion and Lysandra’s relationship gave me ALL THE FEELS.
Seriously, if no other ship makes it in this book, I wouldn’t care, but I need this ship to last. As for the so called “sexy times”, I found them to be awkward with the strange metaphors and similes and they were brief. For a girl who reads a ton of romance books, I didn’t really care for the sexy times in this book. Side note, I think Rowan and Dorian have a budding friendship and I want to that grow.
Empire of Storms literally left my heart of the floor. I’m actually glad that the next and final installment is one year away because I still need to process everything that went down in the finale. At this point, I don’t even know where the final book will take us and if Aelin does not make it out alive, I may throw my eReader out the window. The final installment is going to ruin me and I am not prepared for this. NOT PREPARED WHATSOEVER!