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Queen of Shadows

Written by: Sarah J. Maas
Narrated by: Elizabeth Evans
Series: Throne of Glass
Length: 20 hrs and 43 mins
4 out of 5 stars (4 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Goodreads Choice Award Winner, Best Young Adult Fantasy, 2015

Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she's at last returned to the empire - for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past.... She has embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen. But before she can reclaim her throne, she must fight. She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen's triumphant return.

©2015 Sarah J. Maas (P)2015 Audible, Inc.
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  • Wendy
  • 03-09-15

Wow! Just, Wow!

Fantastic continuation of the story. Each book just gets better and better. I couldn't stop listening to it. The only negative is waiting for the next book. Sarah J Maas is a very talented writer.

20 people found this helpful

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  • Elisabeth Carey
  • 02-11-15

Unexpectedly excellent

First off, I should point out that yes, this is book four of the series, and I've read none of the previous three. Also, there's a good bit of Grimdark about this, with everyone doing or having done awful things, and mostly willing to do more awful things. And at the end, we have a resolution to the story within this book, but no resolution of the larger issues, and much more bad stuff to come in future volumes.

So, really, at some point, I should have been overcome with the desire to throw it against the wall, except for two things. One, it's the audiobook. Two, I loved it.

Aelin Galathynius (guessing on the spelling of the last name), rightful heir to the throne of Terrasen (another spelling guess) has quietly returned to Rifthold, the capital of the bitter enemy who killed her family and conquered her kingdom. She wants revenge on the King of Adarlan, but he's not the only target of her vengeance. She was hardly more than a child when she fled her family's killers, and she's just nineteen now, but she's packed a lot into those years. She trained as an assassin under Rifthold's king of the assassin's guild, under the name Celaena Sardothien. Part Fae herself and possessing Fae fire magic, she traveled to the Fae lands and learned the use of her magic there--and made a valuable friend in Prince Rowan. She's back now to rescue her friend and cousin General Aedion and her friend Prince Dorian. She needs to know if Chaol Westphal, captain of the guard, is still a friend. She's been through horrors, she has done horros, and she has more to face and do before she can hope for anything vaguely resembling peace.

This is a dark and bloody story, but I like Aelin, Rowan, Aedion, Chaol and his second, Nesryn, and Aelin's old rival Lysandra. Along with the darkness and blood, Queen of Shadows has romance, male friendship, female friendship, and male-female friendship, all treated in adult, satisfying, compelling way. Because, as I mentioned, I've read none of the previous three books, there's a lot I was trying to pick up as the story went along, but Maas salted in enough background in unobtrusive ways that if I didn't always know exactly what was going on at first, I was picking up enough to enjoy continuing to listen.

Highly recommended.

I received a free copy of this audiobook from Audible in exchange for an honest review.

19 people found this helpful

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  • LexiLikesLiterature
  • 18-09-15

Awesome... Simply Awesome

Any additional comments?

This series has everything a fantasy reader desires! I literally couldn't take head phones off. We finally get a stand off between the king and the assassin and it doesn't disappoint. I have found myself in love with the Wing leader too. Can't wait to see how the final battle turns out.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Claudia H
  • 24-06-16

Standard YA girl series, which I loved

I've noticed trends in a lot of the YA scifi books that I've read, particularly those with a strong female lead, and this one followed all of them. It has the usual love story/triangle, and the usual rise from the lower class, and a strong female protagonist - which to be clear, I always enjoy, AND, this book still managed to give you a plot line to love, even though you've kind of heard it all before.

This one brought me back, I had lost a little hope in the last book, but this book brought me back to loving the story, and I've already set alerts on my phone to remind me to check when the next book will be released.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Paulina Pham
  • 18-09-15

SOOOO GOOOOD!!

I cannot explain how much this series keeps getting better and better. This book gave me something that I never knew I was waiting for HAPPINESS! the whole book is just intense and action packed. So much happens and so much that I expected to happen and not to expect happen. True bliss! Now I cannot wait another year....ugh. 😢

7 people found this helpful

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  • Striker
  • 13-09-15

Everything You Were Waiting For, And More To Come!

I couldn't wait for this book, and pre-ordered the day it was listed on Audible...
I won't go into as many details on this review as I usually might, because I don't want to get into too much that might ruin it for the fans of this series... BUT, I will say that we get to see Celaena's return to Rifthold, and there is nothing but constant battles, fights, secrets and past histories reveled, and everything that the readers of this series have been waiting for... AND THERE IS STILL MORE TO COME! Although I would say the series ended in a cliff hanger like some of the previous ones did, there is definitely MUCH more story to be told, and the book ends in such a way that we know that the story will continue.
TEASER: The fight between Celaena and the king is AWESOME!
All-in-all: YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED!

17 people found this helpful

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  • Toni
  • 24-09-15

Exceptional!!

Sarah Mass gets better and better with each book of the series. A marvelously developed plot that continues to expand. Characters interesting and imperfect. Just finished the second read!

6 people found this helpful

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  • Susan
  • 18-09-15

Loved it

Love this series. Didn't want to stop listening. Can't wait for next installment. My only negative was that characters from past books being brought into play when I couldn't remember who they were.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-09-15

Excellent Story

The author is wonderful on how she keeps you wanting to learn more about the characters. Can't wait for next installment.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Donald Tolley
  • 05-03-19

Good but lots of filler

I’ve really enjoyed the series as a whole so far. This book however was really drawn out. It sometimes seemed I was reading the same material multiple times. I’ll probably continue reading future works in this series but I definitely need a break after this one

1 person found this helpful

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  • leelou
  • 24-09-19

Amazing series a must listen

I have all these audible books and I just had to write how amazing these books are a easy listen and a great story weaves with magic and witches and fire hearts it’s well narrated and even my partner enjoys listening to this and he is not a fiction fan :)

6 people found this helpful

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  • Elmamaria
  • 30-10-16

Great 👍🏻!

The description is amazing and there are definitely some twists in this story!! This book will grip you!!

6 people found this helpful

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  • JULIE CHILTON
  • 10-05-19

Brilliant book

Love this book as much as all the others. Sets up the next book nicely.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Duniyo
  • 24-05-17

She's amazing

I love aelin and aedion. I wish rowan was mode open but I love his silent broodiness

4 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-11-16

Queen of shadows

Awesome book couldn't stop listening to it. It gets better and better very good fantasy.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Louise Bishop
  • 23-04-19

stunning

This book makes me feel for the characters. The plot is intricate and surprising. What more could you want.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-02-19

the book 😍

I loved every single chapter the book keept me awake at night the narrator is the best I love her voice

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • david martin
  • 14-01-19

Gripping novel

I couldn't stop listening to this. The story line and the narration were absolutety superb.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Claire Barney
  • 08-10-18

Incredible!

This book is amazing, I could hardly put it down! I love the characters more and more as I read this fantastic series. It gets better with every book! Praise to Sarah J. Maas for the extraordinary imagination, time and effort that has gone into writing this series! Amazing!

3 people found this helpful

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  • L.Mackenzie
  • 14-02-17

A great story & a beautiful narrating voice 😍

I just wish I could afford to listen to the rest of the series 😕

4 people found this helpful

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  • Ingrid
  • 10-11-16

such a good read! Compelling!

loved it Couldn't put it down ! Such a compelling read! Can"t wait for the next book in this series!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mary
  • 23-09-16

One of the best fantasy series I've ever read!

Gripping, story incredibly gets better and better! Off to start the next book now! Love it!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tamara
  • 09-09-15

New Favourite series

I absolutely loved it!! so cant wait for the next book!! Had me absorbed and wanting to know what happens next to them all, all the way through the book. was sad when the book ended and wasnt another one out yet to read.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Payne’s Bookworm Reviews
  • 07-02-20

Jam packed of goodness

These books just get better and better with each book I read. When I first starting reading this series I wasn’t sure I was going to enjoy it as it didn’t seem something I was going to like, Celaena’s character just annoyed me. But I am so glad I stuck it through as I am so invested into these characters and the more that are introduced and the more they grow I just don’t want the series to end now that it is coming closer to its end.

After defeating Narrok and the Valg Princes’, saving Mistward in Heir of Fire, saving Rowan from Maeve, starting her our Court, giving a blood oath, Celaena/Aelin was back in Ardalan to try and keep her promise she made to Nehemia to free her people and save Eyllwe. But she never expected to find out that everything had fallen apart after she left. Her cousin Aedion was alive but due to be executed, no one knew where the Captain Chaol was, what had happened to the Prince Dorian, plus there were new uniform guards everywhere. People were being executed daily on the streets, She needed to do something and quick. Can she save Aedion? Can she get the Amulet of Orynth? Can she free magic and get Rowan to join her and bring Terrasen back to its glory?


Aelin Ashryver Galathynius continues to grow and flourish in this book. She is continually showing why she shouldn’t be underestimated. She is still the same person inside, she is still Celaena Sardothien but she has grown into her Fae-self, she has all the magnificent traits of both characters, she is fierce, arrogant, stubborn, brave, sassy, loyal, protective and dedicated.


This book is full of strong, tough heroines, don’t distinguishing between main and secondary they are alike. They are all supporting of each other. The first I would have to mention is Lysandra, we first meet Lysandra back in The Assassin’s Blade Novella and I was not a fan of her at all, I wanted Aelin to destroy her back then, but I am so glad that she never did and I would have missed out on so much of her awesomeness now. Lysandra has had it just as rough as Aelin and the two of them together are a force not to be messed with. I can’t wait to see what he’ll these two ladies unleash.

“Please,” Lysandra said, waving a manicured hand, “you and I are nothing but wild beasts wearing human skins. Don’t even try to deny it.”


Manon Blackbeak is back in this book and she is so freaking kicka**. Now in Morath and away from her Grandmothers watchful eye Manon is able to stand up for herself and the thirteen without constantly being berated by the Matron. She isn’t about obedience, discipline, and brutality anymore, she is questioning everything. I loved how she pretended not to care about Elide but deep down she did and what she did for her will be something that will be a massive tide changer in the war. But when Manon meets Dorian OMG!! Fireworks explode! Even with Valg Collar the connect isn’t enough to stop Dorian from being able to come out and talk with Manon.

“Hello, princeling,” she said, her voice bedroom-soft and full of glorious death.
“Hello, witchling,” he said.

A few extra mentions are for Asterin, Manon’s second, the hell she goes through. She and the rest of the thirteen are so strong and loyal and will stand by whatever decision Manon makes but only Asterin is willing to question her. Her story will make you cry and will probably want you jumping into to the book to kill a certain Blackbeak. But her story will be the final piece needed for Manon to finally allow herself to open up and be true to herself and her thirteen.

Kaltain Rompier comes back into the picture but this time she isn’t living it up in luxury, she is in a hellhole. All though her development and transformation that we got to witness was short it was awe inspiring, and she deserved respect. It’s a shame she wasn’t a character that we got to explore more. But definitely was a game changing role.

Elide Lochan, another strong willed female that will definitely be a character that will help in the future to bring Terrasen to its glory. Elide is another assumed lost cousin of Aelin, but has been locked away by her uncle Vernon. She has been treated horribly and cruelly by the one person that was supposed to protect and love her. She is assigned to the Wing Leader Manon Blackbeak’s quarters, but is soon under the thirteen’s protection when things seem to be going on in the mountains of Morath.


Now on to the men, there is lots of alpha male ego-ness, there is so many great male characters in this book that its so hard to discuss them but here we go.
Firstly, Chaol Westfall, the reunion between him and Aelin was absolute crap, I have not been liking the person Chaol has become the last 2 books and this book has well and truly made me not like him at all. In Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight I thought he was a fantastic male character. But in Heir of Fire and this one Queen of Shadows he just become to much of a self righteous, self absorbed, a**hole. The only redeeming quality he still has is his loyalty to Dorian, he will do whatever it takes to protect the Prince.


Dorian Havilliard, sweet, precious, innocent Dorian. He’s point of views had me in utter distress for him. The agony, pain, loneliness, torture he had endured was heart wrenching. He was so lost and he was accepting the cold, darkness that was surrounding him in this book. But with his big heart when a loved one is in danger he is able to break free from the monster from within him and the power that is released from him is so raw and true is awe. He is no longer going to kneel before others, he is changed forever and it’s going to so freaking good.


Aedion Ashryver, is a new favorite of mine. He is the male version of Aelin which makes him and her one explosive team. Even when he was days away of being executed by the King of Adarlan, Aedion was only concerned about Aelin and as worried that she would try to save him and get herself killed in the process. His unconditional loyalty, love, and respect for his Queen who was a mere child 10 years ago is what makes Aedion a character that is going to be swoon worthy. He had me tears with his sarcasm and his smiles *swoon... Don’t forget to mention his father, holy moly.... that is a whole other matter.


Rowan Whitethorn, is MINE! Just putting it out there, I’ve licked him lol. I enjoy everything about him. His devotion, loyalty, wisdom, alpha-male intensity, territorial and most of all his rare moments of emotions he allows to be seen. I’m so glad that he followed Lorcan to Adarlan cause I was not happy when he was left behind in Wendlyn. Him and Aelin together are perfect together, they are each side of a coin, they balance each other out and don’t take crap from each other. I do hope there is more to them then just them being carrana, I think they are true mates.

“You make me want to live, too, Aelin Galathynius,” he said. “Not exist—but live.” He cupped her cheek, and took a steadying breath—as if he’d thought about every word these past three days, over and over again. “I spent centuries wandering the world, from empires to kingdoms to wastelands, never settling, never stopping—not for one moment. I was always looking toward the horizon, always wondering what waited across the next ocean, over the next mountain. But I think … I think that whole time, all those centuries, I was just looking for you.”

Also a mention to Lorcan, he seems to be a bit of an a**hole, but I do understand in his own twisted way that he is trying to do the right thing, just going about it the wrong way. I have a feeling we are going to see a lot more of him and I do hope he comes to his senses and becomes a part of Aelin’s court and leaves the wicked Maeve behind.

This book just had so much to be praised about, the storyline was addictive, and intriguing, the bonds and connections between characters new and old was fantastic. I can’t wait to see how each and everyone grow and I can’t wait to see what hell is about to be rained on Adarlan.

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  • Melia
  • 12-10-19

Amazing, all over again.

I read these books several years ago and was enchanted by the story. Listening to the books, now... it's so damn amazing, all over again.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 14-03-19

The best book in the series so far!

Honestly this book has gripped me the get go - it is my favourite in the series! So many amazing heart stopping moments, made me cry in three scenes - I shall not name these just in case you haven’t read it but for those you have - I’m sure you know which bits!

And the reader....boy oh boy I can’t imagine Aelin’s voice without her tbh. I really enjoyed her and can’t wait to see if she does the next one. This is the first I read an audible and she made it so so much fun.

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  • Ruth
  • 21-06-18

Best book so far

This series steadily grew on me over time. Well worth a listen. Some interesting surprises.

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  • isiah
  • 14-03-18

really good read

loved this book so much, love this whole series. I am a huge fan of Sarah j maas she is such a tallented writer I am beyond hooked, all the characters have such depth to them it's not hard atal to keep up. highly recommend this book to all. it's been very very hard to top this series so I bought all the books aswel as audio books :) and will do the same when the last instalment is released in september :)... this book in the series and empire of storms are so far my absolute favorite and i along with many many many other super fans absolutely can not wait to get my hands on the last book to finally know the rest of the journey after finally bringing it all together, and then the ultimate cliff hanger has everyone going crayzii :)

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  • Kristin
  • 02-06-17

The plot thickens

Again, I admire Maas willingness to show that feelings and relationships are messy and complicated, and sometimes they do break down and cannot be fixed.

It's great to see Aelin coming into herself as a leader and a warrior, settling in to fight the good fight. Another great addition to this series.

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  • ElleDee
  • 19-02-17

Modern items strange in an ancient world<br />

i finished this but wouldn't recommend this as a must hear/read. Fawcetts,sinks, toilets seem out of place in what I perceive to be an ancient world . At times things are repeated by a character just in case the reader didn't get it. Still the imagination is good and the characters likeable.