I haven’t posted on my blog for a while because I’ve been drowning in uni work! But in light of the release of Sarah J Maas’ A Court of Wings and Ruin tomorrow, I figured I’d post my review of the second book in her series, A Court of Mist and Fury (aka, the book that made all of us change our minds.) This book review was originally posted on my Goodreads account. Follow me there so we can be book friends!
When I read the first book in the series, A Court of Thorns and Roses, my overall feeling was meh. The only reason I bought A Court of Mist and Fury was because I just happened to be in a bookstore and saw it on the ‘New Releases’ shelf, and because it’s basically illegal for me to leave a bookstore without buying a book (and because I was reminded of that hot, mysterious, dark-haired dude who intrigued me in ACOTAR), I bought it.
Holy. Freaking. Moly.
I was not expecting to love this book SO DAMN MUCH!
After surviving Amarantha’s clutches Under the Mountain, Feyre returns to the Spring Court with the powers of a High Fae. But, her heart remains human, and she can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people. She also cannot forget about her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the Night Court. As Feyre navigates the dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power of the world that she lives in, a greater evil looms. But Feyre can only stop it if she can harness her gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wants to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.
1) Feyre, Feyre, Feyre
At its heart, this story is about Feyre finding her purpose and her freedom. After the trauma Under the Mountain, she has to build a new life for herself from the bottom up, and I was honestly so appreciative that SJM actually showed Feyre’s struggles with post traumatic stress in depth, because too often these struggles are skipped over or underdeveloped. It also added a sense of realism to this fantasy story; yes, these characters are Fae, but they are also human at heart. And is this not one of the main themes of the story? Feyre’s character development was so intriguing, well-paced and thoughtful. I was concerned about which way SJM would take her character, especially since Feyre’s character arc in ACOTAR wasn’t exactly as fulfilling as I wanted it to be, but in the end I WAS ROOTING SO HARD FOR HER YES FEYRE YOU GO GIRL!!! She went from a character that I sort of liked, to a powerful woman that I admire so damn much!
2) The Supporting Characters
Amren, Mor, Cassian and Azriel. WHAT A #SQUAD!
Unlike most of SJM’s supporting characters in the Throne of Glass series (which, to me, were a little two-dimensional), the supporting characters in ACOMAF were so intriguing. They had a perfect level of mystery to their backstory that kept you wanting to know more, and they were unique in their own quirky ways. But, it was really their relationships with one another that made you fall in love with these characters. They were truly a family; a family that would protect one another until their last breath, who loved one another unconditionally, who understood one another because they had been through hell together, who could laugh and make fun of one another because they were comfortable. I WISH I WAS A PART OF THE NIGHT COURT!
3. RHYS. RHYS. RHYS.
Let’s just say that Rhys was ranked extremely high on my list of fictional boyfriends after this book (he still is). When I think about the plot of ACOTAR, what I remember most distinctly is the scene where Feyre is running from a bunch of horny Fey men and she runs into Rhys, who is literally described as the most beautiful man Feyre had ever seen, with black hair and blue eyes… And I remember sitting up in my slumped reading position on my bed and, I kid you not, actually saying out loud, “Hello, you.” It’s a little (a lot) embarrassing, but Rhys was an embodiment of my ideal fictional boy (dark hair, blue eyes, mysterious, bad boy, a little tortured, etc.) You get the gist. And so in ACOMAF, Rhy’s is story is revealed in great depth, meaning that we get the see a different side of him, the true side of him, and let me tell you… You will not be disappointed.
But, to me, the best part about Rhys how he treats Feyre, which brings me too…
4) The Romance
I’m one of those people who won’t admit that I’m sucker for romance because emotions = gross. But really, I’m the biggest sucker in the world.
I won’t go into too much detail because I’d be here all day. But the romance in this novel is heart-wrenching and soul-crushing and angsty and sexy and hilarious and will make you curl up into a ball and rock back and forth because why can’t you have a love this timeless and unconditional?!?!
Rhys treats Feyre with such respect and freedom, something you would not expect from his portrayal in ACOTAR, but SJM did a perfect job of creating a slow burn not only in the romance, but in the development arcs of the individual characters. There is nothing greater than watching characters learn to love themselves before falling in love with one another.
Mum, I hope you’re not reading this. If you are, look away now.
Wow. Okay. I must’ve forgotten about all the sex scenes in ACOTAR (were there sex scenes in ACOTAR?) because when the first sex scene came in ACOMAF (and it came pretty early on) it sprung up on me so unexpectedly, I was reading the book on a crowded bus trying to hide it from other people’s view! Good thing all those years of reading fanfiction has made me a master of the poker face.
There are some pretty kinky scenes in this book, and I feel like I now know all of SJM’s secret fantasies. The only problem I had with these scenes was the pretty hilarious way in which they were written… Lots of growling and grunting and euphemisms. It was hilarious, but it was still super hot. Especially (not to say any spoilers) that one scene at the meeting in the Night Court……. Holy God.
The whole idea of the Mate in SJM’s worlds both fascinate me but also make me laugh. It’s such a cliche trope that really plays on the hyper-masculinity of men, and usually ridiculously masculine men turn me the hell off (don’t ask me why), but there’s a part of me that totally digs it as well.
And as this review wraps up, there is one final highlight that is literally
6. THE ENDING!
Holy Mother of God.
THE ENDING IS THE BEST PART OF THE WHOLE DAMN BOOK.
All of SJM’s endings are so action-packed and full of drama, it gives it such an adrenaline rush!!! After I finished this book, I literally spent the rest of the afternoon dancing around the house with badass music on full blast because I had WAY TOO MANY FEELS. Again, I don’t want to spoil anything, but all you need to know about it the ending is that it was FREAKING BADASS.
Honestly, this book was a slap in the face. I think the majority of YA readers were left a little indifferent about the series after ACOTAR, and our worlds were completely thrown upside down after reading ACOMAF. The only thing I could put under this section is the cliche, almost trashy sex scenes, but hey, I’ve accepted I’m basically the queen of trash.
I give A Court of Mist and Fury…
This book left me so shook, I am almost scared about what’s going to happen in A Court of Wings and Ruin and what it will do to my mental state.
I am not ready.
But also, I am so ready.
Bring it, SJM.
Thanks for reading! Let me know what you thought in the comments! 🙂