Thanks to the intervention and ever-changing importance of social media, the high fantasy genre has rapidly become the biggest and most popular speculative fiction genre out there.
And no author has had quite as much success, nor become as much of a household name, as Sarah J. Maas.
It is loosely inspired by the story of Cinderella and follows the story of 18-year-old protagonist Celaena Sardothien, Adarlan’s most famous and dangerous assassin.
After serving a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier, a slave camp, Celaena is summoned before Crown Prince Dorian.
To obtain complete freedom there is one thing she must do: become his champion in the competition to discover a new royal assassin.
Throne of Glass follows Celaena as she fights to earn her freedom, prove her skill, and tackle the challenge of living in a corrupted kingdom with a tyrannical ruler.
If you enjoy immersing yourself in palace politics and witnessing skilled warriors get the recognition they deserve (despite opposing forces), we believe that the following books will tick all of your boxes: From Blood and Ash, The Cruel Prince, Red Queen, and The Winner’s Curse.
Themes In Throne Of Glass
The role of gender is definitely something positive for the intended audience compared to other YA fantasy series out there.
Notably, from the offset, Celaena establishes herself as a strong, determined, and advanced fighter with the skills to take down any opponent.
This shows the flexibility of female identity in the book rather than the narrow and subservient view of stereotypical female roles adopted in other fantasy books.
Most of the characters in Throne of Glass yearn to have freedom in one way or another.
This theme occurs throughout the book, starting with Celaena’s desire to be free from the salt mines of Endovier.
After serving her time, she’s immediately thrust into the control of the Crown Prince, with the promise of freedom in four years.
Celaena’s quest for freedom is mirrored in many other characters throughout the book, including those also competing to become the Prince’s champion.
Good Vs Evil
Throne of Glass also explores good versus evil, a common theme associated with the High Fantasy genre (If you like high fantasy genres, check out Books Like The Poppy War).
This dynamic is explored on a personal and epic scale in this book through morally complex characters.
It’s also backed by the corrupting desire for power, with those in control willing to kill or defeat anyone standing in their way.
Celaena herself has an inner battle of good vs evil as she has both dark and light tendencies inside of her.
4 Books Like Throne Of Glass
If you enjoy a fast-paced fantasy book with plenty of world-building, much like Throne of Glass, you must give Holly Black’s The Cruel Prince a chance.
This is the first installment in The Folk of the Air series.
The Cruel Prince follows the life of the main character Jude Duarte, a human, who bore witness to her parent’s murder as a child.
Along with her two sisters, the killer whisked her away to Elfhame, where she was raised among the faerie in the treacherous High Court of Faerie.
Jude wants nothing more than to belong.
But as many of the Faerie despise mortals, including Prince Cardan, the most wicked and youngest son of the High King, this is an unlikely situation.
To join the Court and save her family, Jude must become embroiled in palace deceptions and master the art of facing her foes.
The journey that Jude embarks on is packed with bloodshed, enemies-to-lovers romance, danger, tricks, and twists at every turn.
You can clearly see the many themes and ideas it appears to share with Throne of Glass, some of which we have outlined below.
- Plenty of complex yet interesting characters to sink your teeth into.
- A very engaging narrative (especially in the first half of the book).
- Could have used a bit more world-building.
Themes: power, identity, truth, corruption, alienation, fear, and courage.
If you enjoy a strong female protagonist who doesn’t bow down to pressure like Celaena in Throne of Glass, Victoria Aveyard’s Red Queen should be next on your list.
In the world of Red Queen, and of 17-year-old Mare Barrow, society is divided into two different groups: those with Silver blood and those with Red.
Red-blooded individuals are considered to be common folk and are ruled by elite Silver royalty who usually possess some form of magical power.
Despite being a Red-blooded individual, Mare has a rare genetic mutation that means she comes into her own Silver-like deadly powers, something that threatens to derail Silver control.
Fearing her power, and in an attempt to hide her identity, the palace fabricates a story that paints Mare as a long-lost Silver princess.
Inside the court, Mare joins the resistance who are actively fighting to bring down the Silver blood ruling.
- Packed with every dystopian trope you could want.
- A strong beginning to the series.
- Sometimes it is hard to separate the names of different Silver elite members in the plot.
Themes: political unrest, magic, alienation, power and justice, control, betrayal, and love.
From Blood and Ash depicts the importance of individualism and autonomy. This is very similar to Celaena in Throne of Glass.
The story follows Poppy, a young woman who was chosen to become the Maiden.
This individual must live a solitary life until she is passed to the gods during her Ascension.
Although it’s considered the highest honor, Poppy dreads this fate as she is condemned to a lonely life unable to touch or speak to anyone but a select few.
And when the alluring Hawke is assigned as her guard, Poppy finds herself drawn to him in a passionate and fiery way, despite understanding that a higher power (the gods) may deem her unworthy.
This is a more mature and intense read than Throne of Glass but no less enjoyable.
- Clear-cut writing that is easy to follow and understand.
- Strong characters all with a unique point of view that is made clear throughout.
- It takes a little bit longer to get into the narrative than other fantasy series.
Themes: alienation, abuse, loss, magic, and corruption.
Seventeen-year-old Kestrel is the daughter of a prominent Valorian general.
She is trapped in a violent world that she simply cannot escape from, with her destiny already chosen for her.
In this regard, she is much like Throne of Glass’ Celaena.
As Kestrel comes of age, she is faced with two options: marry or enlist as a soldier.
But Kestrel is uninterested in either of these paths, instead opting to pursue something that aligns with her goals.
When she buys a young slave named Arin at auction, her perspectives on war drastically shift, and she realizes there is more out there.
The Winner’s Curse is the first novel in a trilogy.
It showcases how careless alliances can prove to be deadly while highlighting a young woman’s struggle to align her conscience with her duty.
- Incredible character growth throughout the book.
- Each chapter contains realistic situations and character interactions.
- It takes until the events of the last quarter before the plot truly picks up.
Themes: secrets, control, war, corruption, alienation, and rebellion.
It’s no secret that Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass is one of the most captivating books ever written in the fantasy genre.
Not only does it capture the violent and villainous nature of those in authority, but it thrusts a seemingly unsuspecting female figure into the limelight.
If you love the themes and ideology in Throne of Glass and are looking for something similar for your next read, the books mentioned above do a great job of capturing the same essence of the character, setting, and overall narrative.
We hope that this article has been of some help to you!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Main Message Of Throne Of Glass?
The main message of Throne of Glass is centered on the desire to find success while overcoming obstacles. Notably, Celaena’s plan for freedom by winning the Kings championship.
Is Throne Of Glass YA Or NA?
Throne of Glass is an award-winning young adult (YA) high fantasy novel series.
What Age Is Throne Of Glass For?
The first book in this award-winning series is intended for readers over the age of 13. Later novels within the Throne of Glass series feature content that is best suited for a more mature audience.