By: Sarah J. Maas
A Court of Thorns and Roses Series At a Glance
- Overall Rating: ★★★★★
- Dude Ranking: Rhysand is the benchmark against which all men will be measured. Tamlin gives us whiplash.
- Emotional Scale: Teagan could finish
- Steaminess: Hand down the window a la Titanic
Pairs Well With
Dark & Stormy
- 2 ounces Myer’s dark rum
- 5 ounces ginger beer
- Lime wedge
Beware. Spoilers are coming…
ACOTAR – So Feyre is a cardboard cutout of a character in this book. The ugly stepsister who is mistreated by her family and forced to hunt for them in the big scary forest. Blah, blah, all that is missing is a mom who wants her dead. She get’s kidnapped by a hot, scary monster/guy and her family does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.
So she gets free room and board in a mansion and STILL tries to escape home to her family to feed them, you know, the ones who just LET HER GET KIDNAPPED. Honestly if it weren’t for the fact that Beauty and the Beast is my favorite movie and the clear parallels in the first half, I would have bailed on this book.
Moving on to under the mountain. This part made the first half worth slogging through. We have sex, violence, a super-villian and her hot boytoy, oh and Feyre’s new love treating her like shit. Tamlin has a chance to rescue her and instead he tries to bone her in a closet. Again someone DOESN’T SAVE HER. Can you say douchebag? I’m not sure he was worth saving at all. Saving him basically stole her soul.
The best part of this book, super hot villain’s boytoy tricking her into a contract. Also, it comes with an awesome tattoo which I always support. Guys with tattoos > guys without them.
ACOMAF – Big upgrade on this one. Can you say best book ever? No, I actually don’t have that in my vocabulary. Dark and twisty is my favorite trait in a guy. (I’m looking at you Rhys and Az). Who knew bat wings could be so sexy? Me. That’s who.
SJM has a tendency to screw up the first (and sometimes second) love interest and write in an EVEN BETTER one in later books. I’m down with this for two reasons: 1. Tamlin sucked and 2. I don’t have to sit through three books of “will they or won’t they”. Let’s get real, she saved his ass in the first book and then he decided to TRAP HER in the house. She ran away from him TO THE VILLIAN. I honestly cannot express how I feel about Tamlin outside of “he’s a fuckboy.”
Real talk, I loved the character building that Feyre went through in this book because she was an idiot in the first one. I know, I know, she had to support her family. I don’t feel like that gives you a right to be spineless.
ACOWAR – Disappointing. This story was basically SJM saying “I know that I write amazing stories and that sometimes tragedy is necessary, but honestly, I want more money and if I don’t kill them I can write spin-offs! Oh wait, you wanted someone to die? Okay, let me kill off this arbitrary character that no one is attached to and write in some amazing and selfless thing that he did so that we can force feed you tragedy. But not real tragedy because the main characters all have to live to make me more money.” I’m not a monster, I will read the spin-offs. Just don’t sacrifice one book to write six more instead of five.
I only picked up ACOTAR because I liked the cover and I’m a sucker for anything Beauty and the Beast (because hello, I’m not a monster). The second half of ACOTAR was dark, dude. I promptly fell out of love with Tamlin who turns out to be as worthless as a built in bra. What kind of asshat stands silently by while Feyre is drugged, tortured, enslaved and paraded around practically naked? Ah yes, the same one who, when given the opportunity to save Feyre, instead tries to have sex with her. Yet, Feyre saves his dumb ass, and dies in the process. Luckily, our resident bad boy, Rhys (my future husband), kills the evil b*itch Amarantha and Feyre is brought back to life as a fae… albeit one with serious PTSD.
Let’s start my thoughts of ACOMAF with why in the freaking world do SJM’s books always include several vomiting scenes?! Not. Necessary. This book forced me to start a Kill List a la Arya Stark with Tamlin’s name at the top. Tamlin is a poster boy for needing therapy. Dude’s got serious issues. The story revolving around Feyre slowly losing more and more of herself was rough to get through. But, I really respect SJM’s depiction of the evolution of an abusive and toxic relationship and think books like this are so important because teen readers can start to understand that this is not okay and to recognize the signs. Never have I felt such rage from a fictitious work as when Tamlin traps her in his house while Lucien (also on my kill list) stands by and does nothing. And after Feyre escapes and finally gets healthy, these asshats betray her (AGAIN) and her sisters to the big bad. Just to get his shiny toy back!?! No.
But what makes this book hands down my favorite book ever (sorry Harper Lee) is Rhys and the Night Court. I would give a kidney to be able to marry Rhys. He is lovely but dark and twisty. He doesn’t hold Feyre back from recovering and being the badass, powerful lady that she is by treating her like she’s made of glass & not able to handle dangerous situations. Did I almost die when I found out they were mates? Yes. Was I okay with the entire cabin makeup scene situation? Obviously. And the ending when he has to break their bond and leave her, I’m not ashamed to admit I had to walk away from for 3 days because I just couldn’t handle it emotionally. But mad respect to Rhys making Feyre high lady and believing in her ability to infiltrate the Spring Court to bring those b*tches down.
ACOWAR fell flat. On the surface it was fine. Rhys and Feyre are still amazing. Feyre brings down the Spring Court and they end up saving the world. But, most of this book was just setting up the spinoffs and continuation of this series (which she is super vague about). We are introduced to a bunch of new characters and plots while the plots she’s already started fizzle out or take weird turns. Like Mor being gay? I 100% support the LGBTQ community and their stories should be included in this series but it was really disingenuous to make Mor gay. We deserved a better LGBTQ storyline because the plot she’s created around Mor just didn’t fit. A PIECE OF MY SOUL DIED WHEN RHYS DIED… But in typical SJM fashion she brings him back. Yet another useless part of the plot designed to check some emotional boxes but that she doesn’t follow through on. And this book was even more stupid because everyone forgives the horrible people? Suddenly we are okay with Tamlin, Feyre’s useless father, the evil dude from the Fall Court, and Lucien? You might forgive them SJM, but i’ll #neverforget.
Let us know what you thought of The Court of Thorns and Roses series in the comments!