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The Assassin and the Desert by Sarah J. Maas

The Assassin and the Desert

“Words could be just as deadly as steel.”

The Silent Assassins of the Red Desert aren’t much for conversation, and Celaena Sardothien wouldn’t have it any other way. She’s not there to chatter, she’s there to hone her craft as the world’s most feared killer for hire. When the quiet is shattered by forces who want to destroy the Silent Assassins, Celaena must find a way to stop them, or she’ll be lucky to leave the desert alive.

Personal Thoughts:

Two months after the incident from The Assassin and the Pirate Lord where Celeana Sardothien disobeyed master assassin Arobynn Hamel, she was sent to the Red Desert to train with the Master of the Silent Assassins. Arobynn believes that she needs to learn obedience and discipline because of her previous betrayal. She only have one month to win the Silent Master attention, trained under him, and get a letter of approval before she can go back to Adarlan’s empire.

At the home of the Silent Assassins her reputation as the heir of Adarlan’s assassin doesn’t count, no one give a damn about her much less the Master of the Silent Assassin himself who is so much hard to please. Even those who are staying much longer than her haven’t get their chances to be train under the Silent Master. But Celeana don’t have much time, she needs to impress the silent master before her one month ultimatum end. She needs to prove her worth, but the problems is how can she do it if the master don’t even talk to her? Her reputation and track record of being the best assassin doesn’t even weigh a thing.

This second novella of the Throne of Glass is a bit longer than its predecessor, The Assassin and the Pirate Lord, which somehow allow more actions and character development to the story. Celeana who once thought that she is untouchable and fearless in the previous novella grow so well in this installment. She learned a lot of things from the home of Silent Assassins, thing she never consider she needs to learn.

Gone is the egoistic and arrogant version of her The Assassin and the Pirate Lord. In this novella, she can’t really boast a lot since no one really care about her accomplishment as an assassin. During her training with the other silent assassins, she struggle so much, she also get frustrated and helpless, which somehow give way to her humble side.

There’s no Sam Cortland in this installment but Celeana doesn’t forget him, as she thinks of Sam once in a while. She wonder what Arobynn did to him as punishment for agreeing helping her at the Skull bay, what she can do for Sam, or what Sam might think of her when he found out that she thinks of him? She has no idea how she’d somehow gotten attached to him.

There’s were some new interesting characters too in this novella. Beside from the master of Silent Assassin, there’s is also his son Ilias who shows a little interest in Celeana. There is also Ansel and Mikhail, two more assassins from the Silent Assassin group who become close to Celeana while she was at the Red Desert.

“If you can learn to endure pain, you can survive anything. Some people learn to embrace it—to love it. Some endure it through drowning it in sorrow, or by making themselves forget. Others turn it into anger.”

The story also shows the difference between the Silent Assassins and Adarlan’s Assassins of Rifthold. During Celeana’s stay in the red desert she discover a new world she never have before. A silent and peaceful world, with its unique culture, traditions and beliefs. One that celebrates shared knowledge, camaraderie and peace. Something Celeana isn’t accustomed to but nevertheless learned to like and appreciate.

With adventure, betrayal, friendship and love, The Assassin and the Desert is a fast-paced and thoroughly entertaining read. To the readers of Throne of Glass series, this novella will help you understand and know more about the main character,  Celeana Sardothien.

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