A Court of Frost and Starlight

“I have to create, or it was all for nothing. I have to create, or I will crumple up with despair and never leave my bed. I have to create because I have no other way of voicing this.” Her hand rested on her heart, and my eyes burned. “It is hard,” the weaver said, her stare never leaving mine, “and it hurts, but if I were to stop, if I were to let this loom or the spindle go silent …” She broke my gaze at last to look to her tapestry. “Then there would be no Hope shining in the Void.”

Title: A Court of Frost and Starlight

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: ACOTAR #3.1-ish

Publication: May 1st 2018 by Bloomsbury YA

Pages: 229

Summary from Goodreads:

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated–scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.

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A Court of Wings and Ruin (AKA: A Court of Pain and Feels)

“Remember that you are a wolf. And you cannot be caged.”

Title: A Court of Wings and Ruin

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: ACOTAR #3

Publication: May 2nd 2017 by Bloomsbury Childrens Books

Pages: 699

Source: Purchased

Summary from Goodreads:

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.


All the Feels:

It’s taken me almost a full month and two full rereads of A Court of Wings and Ruin before I could even fathom the idea of sitting down to write this. It’s always hard saying goodbye to a book series that you love, even though this one isn’t really goodbye to Prythian but only goodbye to Feyre and Rhys. This series, from ACOTAR and ACOMAF, has created a whole new feeling of home. The series has pulled me up, made me smile, made me rage. The ACOTAR series has been there through the ups and downs, through my younger brother’s football games when I was stuck for hours, and even through finals week. I was terrified to start reading A Court of Wings and Ruin. I had it preordered, and I was laying in bed May 1, just waiting. It was like Christmas morning when midnight hit – it took all my self restraint to save it for the morning. Reading it on my Kindle that Tuesday was like walking through the doors of a dream reality. I couldn’t believe it was real.

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A Court of Mist and Fury

“He thinks he’ll be remembered as the villain in the story. But I forgot to tell him that the villain is usually the person who locks up the maiden and throws away the key. He was the one who let me out.”

Title: A Court of Mist and Fury

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses # 2

Publication:  May 3rd 2016 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Pages: 640

Source: Purchased

Summary from Goodreads:

Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.

Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

With more than a million copies sold of her beloved Throne of Glass series, Sarah J. Maas’s masterful storytelling brings this second book in her seductive and action-packed series to new heights.


My Thoughts:

My brain has officially imploded due to the sheer force of all the feels. I do not know what to say. I am in an extreme state of emotional turmoil and I can’t even function right now – much less write a coherent review. I thought A Court of Thorns and Roses was spectacularly brutal, yet I cannot begin to comprehend the enormity of what is running through my veins. A Court of Mist and Fury has blown its predecessor out of the water and right out into outer space, maybe even into another galaxy. I don’t know whether to scream in anguish, dance around with joy, and or melt into a puddle of molten feeling. Perhaps all three.

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A Court of Thorns and Roses

“I threw myself into that fire, threw myself into it, into him, and let myself burn.”

Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses # 1

Publication: May 5, 2015 by Bloomsbury Childrens

Pages: 416

Source: Bookshelf

Summary:

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it… or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!

My Thoughts:

I love it when an old fairy tale gets revamped, especially when it is done well. A Court of Thorns and Roses did not disappoint, it was still Beauty and the Beast but it also had an enticingly new aspect of faeries. Reading this was sort of like Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey books eloped and had a child with the amazing story of Beauty and the Beast that dressed up in the finest of writing styles. I have to admit, I went into this book biased for three reasons. One, I love faeries. Two, I love Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass series. And three, Beauty and the Beast competes for the top position of my favorite fairy tale ever with Peter Pan.

This book sort of starts off like The Hunger Games, with the main character hunting out in the woods so she can feed her family. The world this story takes place in is one of complete fantasy, though the society of the humans is fairly reminiscent of a Victorian London with its propriety and the seasons for finding a husband. This world has many lands, but we start in the Mortal World and eventually end up in the place called Prythian – or the Faerie Lands. These two “worlds” are separated only by a wall and some well-placed Glamour(magic), but that doesn’t stop the lesser Fae from crossing over and terrorizing whatever humans they come across. There are a lot of reasons for the wall, reasons which also could potentially spoil certain aspects of the book because the main character only knows certain parts. I don’t want to spoil anything, but what I can tell you that the wall is in place because there was a war between the Fae and the humans – and that the humans managed to win. There is actually a lot more to it than that, but like I said, spoiler alert.

Now that I have the basic world building out of the way, the characters. I loved them, simple as that. Maas has this amazing ability to make multidimensional characters that can be both terrifyingly strong and completely broken and as fragile as a china doll all at the same time. The four main characters, Feyre, Tamlin, Lucien, and Rhsyand are all prime of this fact. I will say this, for all intents and purposes of this book, Feyre is Belle and Tamilin is Beast. Of course, as we know from the synopsis and our basic knowledge of Beauty And The Beast, Feyre is human and our main protagonist. By very definition of what she is, she is weaker than these frightening and magnificent higher fae – and she knows it and accepts it. But, she is so strong and I love her for it. She knows that she is way out of her league when dealing with the higher fae, yet she will still do whatever it takes to survive or protect the ones she loves. Another part I really liked about her was her loyalty to her family. When reading the book, a large part of me really wanted her to just turn her back on them and leave them to fend for herself because of how they treated her – but she didn’t because she isn’t that sort of person, and that is really admirable. Her father is basically worthless, as we see through her descriptions of him, so she is the one solely responsible for taking care of her family because neither of her sisters lift a finger to help. Also, another ode to her strength, when she gets dragged off to spend the rest of her life at Tamlin’s estate, she does so with full consciousness of what she has done to put herself in that situation. I find it really admirable that she can admit her faults and do what needs to be done to fix them. Also, instead of crying and whining like we would expect to see, she vows to do all in her power to escape. She was kickass in all the moments that needed it, but she was also very vulnerable and fragile in other moments. It made her realistic, easy to relate to, and a wonderful point of view to read the story from.

Now that I have the basic world building out of the way, the characters. I loved them, simple as that. Maas has this amazing ability to make multidimensional characters that can be both terrifyingly strong and completely broken and as fragile as a china doll all at the same time. The three main characters, Feyre, Tamlin, and Rhsyand are all prime of this fact. I will say this, for all intents and purposes of this book, Feyre is Belle and Tamilin is Beast. Of course, as we know from the synopsis and our basic knowledge of Beauty And The Beast, Feyre is human and our main protagonist. By very definition of what she is, she is weaker than these frightening and magnificent higher fae – and she knows it and accepts it. But, she is so strong and I love her for it. She knows that she is way out of her league when dealing with the higher fae, yet she will still do whatever it takes to survive or protect the ones she loves. Another part I really liked about her was her loyalty to her family. When reading the book, a large part of me really wanted her to just turn her back on them and leave them to fend for herself because of how they treated her – but she didn’t because she isn’t that sort of person, and that is really admirable. Her father is basically worthless, as we see through her descriptions of him, so she is the one solely responsible for taking care of her family because neither of her sisters lift a finger to help. Also, another ode to her strength, when she gets dragged off to spend the rest of her life at Tamlin’s estate, she does so with full consciousness of what she has done to put herself in that situation. I find it really admirable that she can admit her faults and do what needs to be done to fix them. Also, instead of crying and whining like we would expect to see, she vows to do all in her power to escape. She was kickass in all the moments that needed it, but she was also very vulnerable and fragile in other moments. It made her realistic, easy to relate to, and a wonderful point of view to read the story from.
There are three main fae in this book, Tamlin, Lucien, and Rhysand. Tamlin, as I have already said, was our so called beast of this story. He was exactly as I remembered the beast’s character and I loved every second that he was included in. He was perfect. He had moments where he was rough, grouchy, and basically an overpowering asshole – but he was trying throughout the majority of the book, and that was what made me love the beast so much in the first place. He tries to make Feyre happy even though he made her his “prisoner”. It added a certain level of complexity to his character that you have to see for yourself, it is absolutely remarkable. Also, his chemistry with Feyre was mind blowing. I swear to God that the pages were so full of electricity that I could feel it all the way down to my toes, do you see where I am going with this? Another thing I really liked was Maas’ literal interpretation of beast. Tamlin has this awesome ability to shape shift into some sort of chimera like beast with a lion’s head and etc. His form is basically identical to the original animated beast from Disney’s film, and I really loved seeing that alluded to. Lucien, the always welcome sarcastic and somewhat crude side kick, always brought a smile to my face. Feyre and Tamlin were pretty entertaining on their own, but throw Lucien into the mix and things got really interesting really quickly. I also really loved his story with his brothers, I won’t get into it much because it is something Feyre doesn’t know for a while – so the readers shouldn’t, also. Then we have Rhysand. I don’t even know how to describe Rhysand, I guess you could say he is sort of like a better, less evil version of Sebastian from The Mortal Instruments. He had this serious charm about him, but he was also extremely dangerous and you had no idea if you could trust him or not. He was really complex, just as Tamlin was, and I honestly can’t wait to see more from him in the sequel. And, I don’t know if I am completely right here, but there won’t be a love triangle – at least I’m hoping not.

Another aspect I really love about this book is the fact that it doesn’t end on a cliffhanger as a lot of books do, especially the ones that already are planned for a series. In fact, A Court of Thorns and Roses can be read as a standalone if you really wanted to – but I would still recommend reading the entire series when it comes out. Because, trust me on this, you will want the next book so badly it is going to hurt.

The setting, I can’t even begin to describe the setting without turning this into some sort of five page essay. The setting was so hypnotizing and fascinating, I could lose myself within it just day dreaming if I really wanted to. The world was so complex, the scenery so graphically beautiful yet terrifying. The farther you got into the story, the more and more layers to this intricate world there were. The world building was phenomenal, as I have already described, but I found myself wanting more with every little bit that was given. Maas’ writing was absolutely stellar. As usual, I give her some serious props for her ability to throw in twists and turns I never see coming (which is a rare thing). She created amazing foreshadowing, a beautifully intricate plot, there was outstanding organization, and her prose was like a breath of fresh air compared to some of the other books I have read. Also, there are so many different layers to this book – it is like a fifty foot wedding cake with one hundred tiers or something close to it. There are inspiring moments, light moments that make you laugh so hard you cry, sad moments that break your heart, happy moments that make you smile, and devastating moments that crush you into little pieces and leave you wanting to curl up into a ball and ignore the world. Sara J. Maas has always had this wonderful ability to mess with our emotions, even in Throne of Glass. She can yank on all of our heart strings and play them like a world renown harpist. The best part, she probably does this while laughing maniacally from behind her computer screen and learning what makes us tick even more (I applaud her evil genius, I really do).

A Court of Thorns and Roses is a wild ride that will leave you both satisfied and the end and craving more. If you love any version of Beauty and the Beast, faeries, romance, action, and heartbreak – hunt down the nearest copy of this book and make it yours. I would leave this book for those ages fifteen and up because of the explicit violence, gore, and sexual content. The description doesn’t lie when it says this book could be the Young Adult version of Game of Thrones. I loved this book, I can honestly tell you that it will always be high up on my recommendation list.