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A Court of Thorns and Roses Paperback – May 3, 2016
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From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—When 19-year-old Feyre kills a wolf in the barren woods near her home in Prythian, she thinks it might be enough to help her family survive another long winter. Instead, a monstrous creature soon comes to the cottage, accusing Feyre of murder and demanding she return with him to the Fae realm as payment for the life she took. Feyre finds herself held on a lavish estate belonging to an elite Fae creature known as Tamlin. Over the course of her captivity, Feyre soon learns that life in the Fae realm can be as much of an opportunity as a punishment. When her feelings for Tamlin shift from loathing to lust, Feyre also realizes little will be able to keep them apart—not even the threat of evil lurking on the borders of the estate. Something that has cursed Tamlin for centuries may destroy him and his realm if Feyre can't find a way to stop it. Maas follows up her "Throne of Glass" novels (Bloomsbury) with this series opener. Readers will find the author's trademark blend of action, romance, and witty banter as well as a sexier, edgier tone. This retelling of "Beauty and the Beast" and "Tam Lin" (with elements from ancient Greek mythology thrown in) has a strong focus on Feyre's physical attraction to Tamlin, but characters lacking in dimension detract from Feyre's strengths as a capable but rash heroine. Uneven pacing includes a slow start followed by a game-changing information dump, and then a more action- and less romance-filled second half. VERDICT A weak fantasy with strong romance elements. Good for fans of Maas's previous books looking for a more mature read.—Emma Carbone, Brooklyn Public Library --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
“A gorgeously written tale as lush and romantic as it is ferocious. Absolutely spellbinding.” ―Alexandra Bracken, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author
“Simply dazzles. . . . the clamor for a sequel will be deafening. . . . Maas' Throne of Glass series has been a smash hit. . . this new series is primed to follow in its footsteps.” ―starred review, Booklist
“Readers will find the author's trademark blend of action, romance, and witty banter as well as a sexier, edgier tone. ” ―School Library Journal
“Sarah J. Maas delivers what may be her best work to date. . . . Enchanting, spellbinding and imaginative. . . . The world-building is stellar, as only Maas can imagine it.” ―USA Today
“Suspense, romance, intrigue and action. This is not a book to be missed!” ―The Huffington Post
“[T]he sexual tension and deadly action are well-supported by Maas' expertly drawn, multidimensional characters and their nuanced interpersonal dynamics. . . . Sexy and romantic.” ―Kirkus Reviews
“Elements from 'Beauty and the Beast,' 'East o' the Sun, West o' the Moon,' the myth of Persephone, and the legend of Tamlin are seamlessly interwoven with clever allusions.” ―BCCB
“A dazzling world, complex characters and sizzling romance.” ―RT Book Reviews
“A well-developed world. . . . [Feyre's] grit and boundless loyalty demand that her foes--and readers--sit up and pay attention.” ―Publishers Weekly
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I’m not sure if I will continue with the series after reading the blurb & reviews from book 2, only because I don’t want to see the changes mentioned (I don’t want to reveal spoilers for book 2 & ruin for others so that’s all I’ll say).
Stick with me as I get through this review because this is currently one of my favorite books of this year! The feels that this book brings out are beyond words but I will try my best.
A Court of Thorns and Roses is a loose retelling of the Beauty and the Beast. Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite fairy tales and Disney adaptations. When I found out that Sarah J Maas was doing a retelling I was absolutely intrigued and beyond excited. Sarah J Maas is such a talented author and is brilliant at creating characters that are, at times, flawed but so endearing and unforgettable. I read Throne of Glass earlier this year and was beyond pleased with it and the two other books in the unfinished series. While ACOTAR is definitely different from ToG, it isn't any less beautiful!
Feyre is a mortal and she lives in a poor village right outside of the land that is ruled by the High Fae. She is the main source of food and income for her family and living in poverty has definitely taken a toll on her. She is hungry, tired, bitter and angry at all Fae in the beginning of this book and she has every right to be. Not all Fae are nice creatures and their kind had once ruled the world as well as the mortals living in it. There are no happy stories of the Fae and Feyre believes them until one day she actually meets one.
Feyre was such an awesome character and I really enjoyed watching her grow in the time span of the book. She learned so much about herself as well as the Fae and her family. She learned just how strong she really is because she had to go through some major difficulties. Feyre is definitely flawed and, at some points, a little too stubborn. There were times when she didn't listen to the advice of those around her and ended up getting into some trouble, but she was a fantastic character nonetheless.
Tamlin and Lucien are two very big reasons why I absolutely fell in love with this book! I won't say too much about them but they are such amazing characters and I loved watching them grow as well. I cannot wait to read more about them! Also, Tamlin is absolutely swoon worthy! ;)
Feyre's family members are more fleshed out than I thought they would be and I was definitely pleased with it. I hope to learn more about them in the books to come!
The setting was definitely magical and Maas has such a way with words! I felt as if I was really there with the characters. The history of the High Fae and the mortals is definitely interesting. There was suspense, action, romance, and funny moments throughout the book and Maas knows how to execute each one perfectly! The romance in this book is steamier than Maas' other books and might be described as New Adult by some.
The ending had my heart pounding and I was on such an emotional roller coaster. I feel as if I have rambled on throughout this review but I cannot find enough to say about this book! If you liked Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge as well as The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas, then you will definitely want to check this out. If you haven't read either of those, then you definitely should! And if you haven't read any other books by Maas, then let this be your first!! I cannot rave enough. :)
This for me was like a good combo mash up of Beauty in the Beast curse concept, Cinderella, Crown Duel/Court Duel by Sherwood Smith, similar tones to (and I hate to say it) Twilight- forbidden "instant" love, secret keeping, self sacrifice, Graceling-ish, and Holly Black iron fey type with some notes from Hunger Games, you do what you must to survive and it's not always fun or pretty and it can leave a lasting negative impact. Amazon says GoT but I don't see that as much.
Feyre puts her families needs before herself and her own and in trying to do so and keep them all alive she ends up have to leave them to live in a different land or lose her life- she chooses to leave in hopes of returning and that's when the story gets interesting.
This is a very easy, simple read but it is very attention grabbing from beginning to end and you'll think back on it after you finish. There were parts I love and there were parts I hated but most books are like that. I feel like her character started out as strong and she lost a lot of that as the book went on which was disappointing, I feel like her character is not a stupid scared coward which is what happened a little bit. I am hoping in the second she continues to become a mash up of who she is in the beginning of the book and something better, stronger, smarter and self sufficient. I don't want a Bella needing Edward to think for her and save her. I want her to save herself- "I do this for myself because I deserve it" and less "I do this for him because 'love'..... "