Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses
Author: Sarah J. Maas
After reading ACOTAR once before I already had a good idea of what was going to happen although it had been a while but I am marathoning the series since I just got my hands on a copy of A Court of Mist and Fury (ACOMAF) as well as A Court of Wings and Ruin (ACOWAR) the new book. I was so excited to be re-reading this book as I gave it 5 *’s the first time around. Diving back into this world was amazing and I love Feyre because she is so focused although I did feel she was bearing a huge burden, one beyond her years because she is the youngest sibling in this story. I love Sarah J. Maas’ writing of strong female protagonist.
As I approach the ¼ mark in this story we see Feyre kill a wolf which later turns out to be a faerie in disguise, because of this the Fae have the right to either kill Feyre or take her to the fae lands of Prythian where she will spends the rest of her life in accordance with the Treaty. Feyre agrees to be taken leaving her family, lover and life behind. She is surprised when she arrives not only be the lands but its inhabitants as well. I loved Lucien and his smart, snarky attitude and Tamlin’s silent brooding. Slowly Feyre begins to adjust to life in Prythian although she still doesn’t trust the Fae, she learns to co-exist with them. Initially I felt that Lucien may have been a better love interest for Feyre but maybe Tamlin will grow on me like he did the first time around.
As we approach the halfway mark in the novel we see Feyre learning to trust the Fae realizing they aren’t really that different from humans. We also see Feyre and Tamlin become closer as she finds herself attracted to him in a way she never was with Isaac. Feyre also earns some degree of respect from the Fae so facing a killing several deadly beings on her own that even some lesser Fae might struggle with. I absolutely loved the scene where Feyre holds the hand of a dying Fae and Tamlin doesn’t understand why because she apparently hates Fae but when she explains her reasoning it completely broke my heart. We see the strange relationship between Tamlin and Feyre develop further especially as the blight and other courts make themselves known. The Night Court seems to take particular pleasure in delivering Tamlin a severed Fae head and Feyre does at times question whether she is truly save there.
As we cross into the second half of the novel we see Rhysand, High Lord of the Night Court appear for the first time and he threatens to turn Feyre over to Amarantha which Tamlin begs him not to do. After this encounter Tamlin decides it is far safer to send Feyre back to her family away from the Fae courts but before he does he takes her to his bed as their final goodbye. As she leaves Prythian and Tamlin, Feyre is slightly heartbroken as she has really come to care for Tamlin and everyone else in the Spring Court. After returning home Feyre feels so lost and she knows that she truly belongs in Prythian, that she belongs with Tamlin. She also learns her sister Nesta wasn’t affecting by Tamlin’s magic and knows where her sister has been, after days of intense thinking and depression Feyre makes the choice to return to her High Lord no matter the cost. Alis explains to Feyre upon her return of Tamlin’s curse. It turns out Amarantha desires Tamlin and his constant refuses to become her consort and lover angered her. In her rage she cursed Tamlin, the curse stated he had to get a human who hated Fae to fall in love and marry him and Feyre was that person but because Tamlin couldn’t tell her of the curse she left to return to her world. In the short days she spent at home Tamlin was taken to Amarantha’s court Under the Mountain where he is to be broken before all the other courts. Feyre practically forces Alis to tell her how to get there so she can try to save him and if she can’t she wants to die by his side.
As we approach the final section of this novel we see Feyre come face to face with Amarantha, when she says she wants to claim Tamlin, the Fae Queen is furious but cunning. She bargains with Feyre, telling her that if she can complete three tests or a riddle she, Tamlin and the entire Spring Court can leave. Feyre is given the riddle and the answer seems so close but she can’t grasp it so she faces Amarantha’s first trail which leaves her badly injured but Lucien watches over her helping where he can. Feyre’s completion of the first trail leaves Amarantha irked but she just plans do something worse when Feyre faces her again. During the time Feyre is injured and dying from an infection she is visited by Rhysand who offers her a deal; his healing powers in exchange for Feyre one week of every month for the rest of her life to which she agrees because she has no other options. Rhysand uses his hold over Feyre to torment Tamlin which he takes great pleasure in but Feyre can see beyond the image he project to Amarantha and the other fae. By the time the second trail rolls around Feyre is finding her place in this deathly game of cat and mouse with Rhysand at her side.
The final section of this novel was beautiful. We see Feyre face her second task and win but only with Rhysand’s help and as their game draws to a close Feyre realises that Rhysand has been playing Amarantha and is playing a game far more deadly than she is. As Feyre faces her final trail she has nothing left to give. Her final task is to kill three innocent people which she does until she learn the final person is Tamlin and she has been tricked by Amarantha but she can’t kill him so she dies in his place. On the verge of death Feyre answers the riddle freeing Tamlin who kills Amarantha in a heartbeat, and in return all the High Lords comes together to revive Feyre as a fae, an immortal. The novel ends with Feyre coming to terms with everything that has happened and reacquainting herself with Tamlin but she hasn’t forgotten the deal she made with Rhysand and we do get the sense in the final pages that there is something far stronger drawing the unusual pair together but for now Feyre is content.
Overall, I didn’t like the comments that Tamlin was abusive to Feyre in this book because he isn’t. He only bites Feyre because she is still feeling the effects of the magic that possessed him during Calanmai and all their other romantic and/or sexual encounters Feyre completely consents to, and already being experienced in sexual relationship she knows exactly what consent is and what it signifies. I loved all the characters more than I did the first time around if that’s even possible. I can’t wait to get stuck into A Court of Mist and Fury very soon and see more of my favourite characters like Rhysand (the cheeky devil!) Still very highly recommended.
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