My Top Ten Sarah J. Maas Characters

06/06/2016 Discussions, Lists 10

My Top Ten Sarah J. Maas CharactersWarning: This post will contain spoilers for most of the currently released Sarah J. Maas books, so don’t read on if you haven’t read them and don’t want them spoilt!

I’ve previously done lists of my top ten A Song of Ice and Fire and Harry Potter characters, so I thought it was time to do a list of my favourite Sarah J. Maas characters, seen as she’s one of my favourite authors (yep, I’m a book blogger cliche!).

I just recently finished reading the Throne of Glass prequel novellas Assassin’s Blade, so this list includes characters from that, the Throne of Glass series and the A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Who are your favourites?

1. Celaena Sardothien/ Aelin Ashryver Galathynius (Assassin’s Blade and the Throne of Glass series)

So let’s start with the ladies! Celaena/Aelin as the kickass heroine of both Assassin’s Blade and the Throne of Glass series is one of my favourite characters full stop. I know a lot of people dislike her, but I personally really like how tough she is, yet how girly. Usually tough female characters are depicted as tomboys, so it makes a refreshing change to have a heroine who like clothes and make-up and luxury (and could even be described as vain), but could still beat the crap out of most people twice her size. The fact that she knows that she’s beautiful is also something I like – I hate those ‘I’m so plain but somehow every man within a ten-mile radius is in love with me’ heroines.

Another complaint people commonly make about her is her progression from the first novel to the later novels, but personally I like the way she has grown as a character, and starts to take control of her own destiny. Her relationships with many of the other characters (particularly the men in her life) also change a lot, some for the better, some for the worse, and I really can’t wait to see where they go in the next book.

2. Feyre Archeron (the A Court of Thorns and Roses series)

Sarah J. Maas’ other heroine is perhaps more instantly likeable than Celaena, and I really love her courage and dedication to the people in her life. When you first meet her in A Court of Thorns and Roses she is struggling to provide for her family, always putting her father and sisters first, even when they don’t do the same for her. She then goes on fight against the odds for the man she loves, eventually even sacrificing her own life to save him and the people of his court.

As with Celaena, I also really like how she grows as the series goes on, as in the second book she too starts to take control of her own life and really comes into her own, learning how to use her newfound powers and finding her place with people who truly value her. I can’t wait to see where her story goes next!

3. Nehemia Ytger (the Throne of Glass series)

Nehemia is without a doubt one of the most courageous and strong-willed characters in the Throne of Glass series, and that’s a series that has Celaena Sardothien in it! Whilst for the first few books Celaena denies her heritage, Nehemia fervently fights to the death for her own people’s freedom from slavery, heading a fierce rebellion against the iron rule of the King of Adarlan.

4. Morrigan (the A Court of Thorns and Roses series)

Despite what she has been through and where she has come from, Morrigan seems to be one of the most upbeat characters in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, and I really liked that about her.

As she is the only true female friend Feyre has ever had, I really loved their relationship, and I’m really intrigued as to where the whole ‘Morrigan – Azriel – Cassian’ love triangle is going to go.

5. Manon Blackbeak (the Throne of Glass series)

Manon is such an interesting character because she is essentially a villain – she’s an Ironteeth witch, and in the Throne of Glass world that means drinking blood, eating flesh and committing all sorts of other atrocious acts of cruelty and brutality.

Manon as the heir to the Blackbeak Clan is supposedly one of the most vicious of all the Ironteeth witches, yet she does start to show a level of humanity, and I really am curious as to how her story will continue now that her path has started to cross with the main characters of the Throne of Glass series.

6. Rhysand (the A Court of Thorns and Roses series)

A lot of ACOTAR fans are going crazy for the Feyre – Rhysand romance after the recent release of A Court of Mist and Fury, and I can see why. Whilst I didn’t like him for his rather sketchy actions in the first book, I was intrigued by him, but after the second book I’m now a huge Rhysand fan!

I really liked how he didn’t tell Feyre about their bond until she happened to find it out, as unlike Tamlin he clearly was refusing to take her choice away from her, and I felt like the two’s relationship was based on friendship before lust or even love, and I really liked that. Their banter was fun to read, and I don’t remember ever thinking anything like that about her interactions with Tamlin, and I can’t wait to see where their relationship goes next!

7. Rowan (the Throne of Glass series)

When Rowan was introduced in Heir of Fire, I was pretty intrigued by his moody facade, as you just knew there was so much more lurking beneath, and I was really looking forward to finding more about him. And I certainly got my wish throughout the latter part of Heir of Fire and in Queen of Shadows!

As with Feyre and Rhysand’s relationship, I really liked how his relationship with Celaena is based on friendship, with there not really being any romantic feelings between them when they first meet. I know a lot of people really didn’t like the jump from Chaol to Rowan, and don’t like in general how Maas’ books tend to set up one love interest and then skip to another, but personally it’s something I do really like. It just seems more true to life that the heroine doesn’t just meet the love of her life first time round and they’re together forever, and in the case of Celaena and Rowan, they have both loved and lost people before and so understand each other in that way, which I felt added another dimension to their relationship.

8. Sam Cortland (Assassin’s Blade)

Speaking of having loved and lost, when I recently read Assassin’s Blade I found myself really liking Celaena’s first love interest Sam Cortland. The two begin the book as rival assassins in the house of Arobynn Hamel, King of Assassins, and I loved the way they bonded over freeing the slaves against Arobynn’s wishes.

Despite being an assassin, Sam seemed like a genuinely kind person, as you can see in his dealings with the courtesans (his mother having been one of them who was killed by a jealous client) and protectiveness over Celaena, and his fate really did break my heart (even though I knew it was coming, since I read the Throne of Glass series first).

9. Dorian Havilliard (the Throne of Glass series)

At first Dorian isn’t the most likeable of characters – he seems like an overly confident, spoilt, ladies man who functions as a puppet for his father. But as the books go on, I came to like him more and more as he shows himself to be incredibly compassionate person, and he starts to fight against his father’s decisions and wants to right the wrongs in his kingdom.

I also really liked his relationships with a lot of the other characters. He has been friends with Chaol since childhood, and the two really seem to care about each. In fact their friendship is one of my favourite male friendships in any of Sarah J. Maas’ books (sorry, Rhys, Cassian and Azriel!)!

I also like how when Dorian’s romantic advances are rebuffed by Celaena he doesn’t hold it against her (or Chaol when the two become involved), but ends up developing a true friendship with her. I really liked his romance with Sorscha in Heir of Fire as well, so I found the events at the end of the book truly heart-breaking, and his captivity in Queen of Shadows was truly horrifying to read about.

10. Cassian (the A Court of Thorns and Roses series)

I could just as easily have picked Azriel for this final spot, as I really loved the two Illyrian males, but Cassian just edged it because I ever so slightly preferred his sense of humour and banter over Azriel’s brooding. He definitely brightened up any scene he was in in A Court of Mist and Fury!

Honourable Mentions: Lysandra (in Queen of Shadows, not so much in Assassin’s Blade!), Chaol Westfall (Throne of Glass), Sorscha (Throne of Glass), Azriel (A Court of Thorns and Roses), Amren (A Court of Thorns and Roses), Asterin Blackbeak (Throne of Glass).

So who are your favourite Sarah J. Maas characters? Are there any you really don’t like?

10 Responses to “My Top Ten Sarah J. Maas Characters”

  1. Tracy @ Cornerfolds

    Awesome list!! I didn’t really enjoy the Throne of Glass series, but I LOVE A Court of Thorns and Roses and A Court of Mist and Fury! I wasn’t sure about Rhysand after the first book, but after ACOMAF I was in love with him! XD

    Here are my Top Ten!

  2. Melissa @ Quill Pen Writer

    YEESSS I LOVE all of these characters. Especially Rhysand. <3 Even in the first book, though I was kind of hesitant at first to like him, I had a feeling there was more to his personality and he had hidden depths. I'm so glad he lived up to that feeling! Manon's journey also intrigues me, and I'm super excited to see where her path leads.
    Wonderful post! 😀

    • Laura

      I had a feeling there would be more to Rhysand in the first book too, so I’m glad we got to learn so much more about him in the second book.
      And I really can’t wait to find out where Manon’s story goes too. I can’t wait until she properly starts getting involved with Aelin and Dorian and the other main characters 🙂

  3. Zeee @ I Heart Romance

    The Throne of Glass series is soooooo goooood! I was obsessed…AM OBSESSED! Yes, I also love Caelena/Aelin’s character growth from TOG to QOS! And Manon!! AHHHHHH I’m shipping her with a certain prince…now king… ehemmm

    I know the ship has sunk of Caelena and Chaol, but Chaol is one of my favorite male characters in the series. Although I don’t agree with his decisions, I think they were appropriate at the time and for the situation. I’m sad about this but I hope Chaol redeems himself in the series, even if he won’t be with Caelena.

    I’m not really a fan of ACoTaR and ACoMaF, though.

    • Laura

      I’m definitely shipping Manon and that certain Prince/King too!
      I’m really interested to see where Chaol’s story goes now that he isn’t with Celaena. I do still really like him as a character, so I hope he has something significant to do (and I have a feeling he will!) and doesn’t just end up as a surplus character.
      I didn’t really like ACOTAR so much, but something about ACOMAF really changed my mind about the series!

  4. Circuit

    I like Chaol and Manon and hate Aelin, or what ever she sold her name to now. Typical character that burns her identities as soon as they become inconvenient. Sorry, but to me a strong character embraces everything that they are. The good, the bad and ugly and admits that’s what they are to learn and be better. Not sheds it declaring that Celaena is dead or Aelin is dead as she has with both. You know since she’s so queenly. Now she needs an identity that makes her look good. She keeps on giving up on her friends and people that actually sacrificed things for her. She either wants to kill them (Dorian – gives up on him as soon as things get hard, Chaol – who she tried to kill which is worst than anything she claims he has done. Not to mention he really didn’t do anything beyond Aelin telling the readers he did, because it’s clear to me he had nothing to do with her friends death. She attempted to kill him. That is worst no matter how you slice it. And Chaol has taken the burden she gave him to cary and gave up everything to save her, but she as is her way hasn’t even apologized ) or tells them they should die (Chaol again – she tells him that he should have died with Dorian, even though except for dying there is no benefit for him staying with Dorian. Chaol is also the only person that wants to find a way to fight for Dorian and for humans. Aelin couldn’t give a shit about her friend, former lover since she found a new squeeze or innocent people that she apparently is too busy to help save, and yet somehow finds the gall to reprimand Chaol for. She seems to blame him for anything that comes to mind. I bet and I haven’t read that far, that Dorian after returning will be mad at Chaol for keeping him alive and kiss Aelin’s ass like everyone else does). She has to be told that someone’s lives is hard (Lysandra) just to change her tune, instead of having enough empathy to understand that being sold into prostitution might not be great and might actually require an act to survive. The fact that a child has to spell it out for her makes her inconsiderate and stupid. Wouldn’t want to be her friend. Also, I don’t see her as a badass. I see her as a spoiled child that constantly talks about revenge and throws tantrums and wants to kill and burn anyone that doesn’t grovel and eats sweets and goes sightseeing after people burned to death. But, then she just dismisses them as a bunch of lowlifes. Yet, forgets that she, Aedion and Lyssandra not so long ago might have been easily classified as such. She’s such a simpleton and Rowan is an over the top meathead so I hope they end up together. Some might say isn’t that what Manon is and the answer is no because Manon is growing and as a reader I’m not told she’s the protagonist. So here is why I can’t stand Aelin. I suggest reading Hyperion Cantos to see a real female protagonist. One that understands collateral damage, but doesn’t demand it. One that find sorrow for strangers rather only friends that suck up to her. One that doesn’t play with this teenage love nonsense, (He loves me, we have to wait bull) but embraces it and the time that is precious. One that fights and knows survival and sacrifice and not just wines how hard it is and complains that she just wants to kill things and any innocent that gets in her way. So yeah I hate this character and I liked her, before she started selling out. So I’m hoping she can be redeemed, but the lack of compassion she exhibits (and some might say she has compassion, but I’ll say only for what she can see with her own eyes like endovier or friends, but none for the innocent she doesn’t personally know or those that might be pretending to survive. I mean she told a guy to go to torture and die just so she can make sure that Arobyn, who sold her out is really a sell out. Are you for real? Who asks an innocent person for that just to satisfy your own needs. That is so selfish. Even if this man wanted to die. She used him in the moment of weakness. Most people that might have a moment of weakness need someone to give them a helping hand not shove them down into despair). So she’s to me a horrible person

  5. Jon Snow

    No Lucien? 🙁

    I know Feyre’s kind of left the Spring Court and all, but I liked Lucien’s banter in the first book and he seemed supportive of her in the first part of the second, so I still really like him. Even though he’s far, far awayyyyyyyyy….

  6. Laura

    I did like Lucien in the first book, but not so much in the second book. I’m hoping he’ll grow on me again in the third book, and that he stands up to Tamlin more! 🙂

  7. Quill

    I actually really like his character development in the 3rd book. It’s interesting to see how he perceives the Fae world and how drastically different this is to our current view of other Courts. I like how he perceives the Night Court as so vastly different to the Autumn Court, giving us incite into the social norms of his own birth Court.

    Especially interesting how it is eluded that the Courts are seemingly quite similar despite their vast differences (how Lucien though the Spring court would be different, etc.)

    I love reading about all the courts and world building for them – I wish there was more info!!


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