Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses #1
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Genre: NA High Fantasy
Received: For Review (Thank you Bloomsbury!)
Releases: May 5th, 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
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!
A Court of Thorns and Roses (ACOTAR) became one of my favorite books while I was still reading it. Sarah J. Maas is truly an incredible writer and she deserves all the hype that she received. You can see her growth as a writer with this book. As a first book in a series I have to say that A Court of Thorns and Roses is so much better than Throne of Glass. ACOTAR is phenomenal and I don't think my review can do it justice but I will try.
A Court of Thorns and Roses follows Feyre, a character who had a very rough life before the start of the novel, and the story is ignited when she kills a wolf in the forest to feed her family. Turns out the wolf wasn't actually a wolf and Feyre has to pay for her crime of killing a fae. She is taken over the fae wall by Tamlin. Tamlin, a high born fae who has a mask attached to his face, is clouded in secrets and his mysterious mansion has more to it under the surface than you expect.
ACOTAR is a mixture of fairtytales and folklores, but most prominently you can see Beauty and the Beast and Tamlin. Beauty and the Beast is my favorite of the Disney movies and I adore this fairytale. I loved how Sarah J. Maas worked it into the story. I love that it isn't an overt retelling. Sarah J. Maas works in aspects of Beauty and the Beast with the curse, the masks, and the romance between fae and human but it never feels like it is in your face Beauty and the Beast. ACOTAR is a YA High Fantasy and it never feels like it is strictly a retelling. Tamlin is a story I don't know very well. I am pretty sure it is an European fairy myth and all I know of it is from The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black. Obviously you don't have to know the story to enjoy and fully be immersed into ACOTAR.
The romance in A Court of Thorns and Roses is beyond swoon worthy. The chemistry and sexual tension that Sarah J. Maas builds up between Tamlin and Feyre is palpable. This book is new adult and lends itself to a bit more explicit description of their sex scene. There is something so enchantingly dark and magical about their relationship. It is very beautiful and seductive at the same time. Despite being very hot and cold with Feyre, you can't help but fall in love with Tamlin. At the end of the book, I found myself shipping Feyre and Rhys which I couldn't believe that I was doing. Rhys is very dark, but he is a good guy underneath all of the darkness that he has built up. He sacrifices a lot to protect Feyre. I definitely would love to see a bit more of their chemistry in the next book despite the fated love of Feyre and Tamlin.
The characters of ACOTAR are unbelievably dynamic and developed. Feyre is an amazing protagonist who is both strong and caring. She doesn't just go with the flow of what happens to her. She will fight to the death for the ones that she loves. Feyre is the perfect mix of imperfections in that she is strong but she isn't a warrior. She isn't tough as nails but she has had to be that way to survive. Tamlin is a wonderful character. Sarah J. Maas is wonderful at creating characters that you aren't quite sure if you could trust them. He was dark and mysterious yet he had such a good side to him. I fell in love with and his world. It was enchanting and I loved Feyre with him. Rhys on the other hand is definitely a character that you can not trust but for some reason I started shipping him and Feyre towards the end. Tamlin and Feyre definitely have a fated starcrossed type of love story but there was something very seductive about Rhys. Rhys is confident in who he is and goes for what he wants. I am currently marathoning the True Blood TV Show and Tamlin definitely reminds me of the Bill characters who immediately entrances you, but Rhys is the Eric who sneaks up on you and you just can't help but feel more for (I am only on Season 3.) Lucien was wonderful and a delight to read. His interactions with Feyre lightened the mood of this book significantly. The Queen was evil and so evil that you want to go into the book and kill her yourself which is amazing.
The world building is exactly what you would expect from Sarah J. Maas, utter perfection. Every single aspect of this world is so original and unique. You feel like you are there. It is decident and gorgeous. I would love to see this book brought to life on screen just to see the costumes, the makeup, and the landscapes. There is so much depth to the world and so much out there that we already know exists. Just Tamlin's mansion was a world in and of itself. Sarah J. Maas' writing was unbelievably incredible and amazing. It is beautiful and intricate. You can see her writing has even gotten better from Throne of Glass. Storytelling wise and setting up of a news series is where you see the growth of her writing the most. Throne of Glass as a first book doesn't set up as much as ACOTAR.
I was really excited to go into A Court of Thorns and Roses because I wanted to see how Sarah J. Maas could effectively write a completely new fantasy world. She knocked it of the park. At the same time, the worlds do feel very similar in how descriptive she is and how rich they are. I questioned whether it was the same world or a different continent because I was in the same style of Throne of Glass. I think we so commonly see an author write an amazing fantasy series and then write a spin off in the same world but with different characters. A Court of Thorns and Roses is completely separate from Throne of Glass which is amazing.
A Court of Thorns and Roses was absolutely amazing and you have to read it the minute it comes out. Obviously, if you loved Throne of Glass you will adore this book. Even if you didn't enjoy Throne of Glass I definitely think you would enjoy this book because it is very different and in a lot of ways shows her growth as a writer from her first book. I can't wait for this sequel. I loved the characters, the world, the romance, and literally everything about this book. I recommend this book among all others. It is one of my favorite books and I really want to reread it right now after typing up this review.
Have you read ACOTAR early? What did you think? How excited are you for this book?