30/01/2015

Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses {Sarah J. Maas}



Written by Sarah J. Maas
Amazon | Book Depository 

When huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin – one of the lethal and 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 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.

After reading this, I think it's safe to say that Sarah J. Maas is the queen of writing compelling fantasies. With a spellbinding and beautifully passionate romance coupled with a compelling and powerful plot, I was hooked until the very last page and at a loss for words long after finishing.

This has the feel of a traditional fairytale, with whimsical prose and magical descriptions that leap through the page, but there's also a fierceness to the story that gives it a surprisingly sharp edge, setting it apart from the classic Beauty and the Beast story we all know and love.

Feyre is a wonderfully strong heroine, who learned to hunt to keep her family from starving. She has a ferocity that completely turns the 'damsel' cliché fairytales are famous for on its head, and gives us a character full of fire and bravery. She is a heroine to root for.

Tamlin, our intense and at times brutish Fae, who acts as Feyre's captor, is every bit as complex and delicious as I wanted him to be. Maas was able to depict his initial anger and frustration as justified and kept the antagonism between he and Feyre that the original story was famous for, without painting him as a heartless monster.

Instead, Tamlin is highly sympathetic and brooding enough to make your knees quake, but sweet enough to make your heart flutter. He was one of the most endearing and captivating male characters I've had the pleasure of reading about. Tamlin's relationship with Feyre was also extraordinarily well-paced and built with a mix of charming and sweet interactions, and hotter-than-hell levels of swoon that left me breathless. It's a romance that is entirely enchanting in every way.

Of course, this isn't just a love story. Sarah J. Maas expanded the tale to create an astonishingly vivid fantasy world, ripe with magic and dark shadows of evil that suffocate the lands. There are Fae, each as fascinating as they are engaging – a combination of ruthless and surprisingly lovable creatures, whose motives you can never trust, but who you root for regardless. Then there are spine-tingling monsters and deliciously evil villains who are as awful as they are compelling; all combined with a haunting and eloquent prose that managed to pull me into each moment right alongside Feyre. 

In short, this is a wonderful novel that takes an age-old love story and throws it into a whirlwind of magic and sinister battles for power. It's both an achingly intense romance and a thrilling, bloodthirsty fantasy. Yet again, Sarah J. Maas has crafted a sensational world with characters who will steal your heart in a matter of moments. 

"I wished I had it in me to feel remorse for the dead thing. But this was the forest, and it was winter."

 
 Thank you to the folks at Bloomsbury for sending me this ARC in exchange for an honest review.


Allie has spent the past week dreaming in fairytales. For some reason, they seem to be full of mythical creatures who transform into super hot men with a knack for sword fights and baking. It's an odd combination, but it's made her realise that her future husband should be adept at both those things.
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45 comments:

  1. I am so excited that you got to read this and that you loved it, that seems to be the consensus going around, not that I had my doubts because Maas is a genius.
    Have a lovely weekend!

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    1. She definitely is! I swear everything she touches is just gold!

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  2. Great review! I can't wait to read ACOTAR! The Throne of Glass series is one of my favorites!

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    1. Mine too, mine too. Dare I say . . . I may like this the same amount as I like ToG :O

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  3. Wonderful review, Allie! I can't wait to read this one. You have me sold on the swoon already. And Tamlin. <3 <3 I'm a liiiiittle nervous about this turning into a love triangle down the road, but I'm willing to take a chance. :P It will be my first Maas book!

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    1. TAMLIN IS EVERYTHING!!! I so hope they don't go the love triangle route because that would just ruin the entire thing for me

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  4. I need to read this book like now, but, but...I have to wait until May. The struggle is real. I am always one for a good fairytale retelling, and this one seems especially awesome because a lot of fairytale retellings don't have a fierceness about them.

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    1. This is definitely fierce and bold and brave and just doesn't shy away from THAT ACTION

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  5. I've honestly haven't heard a single negative thing about this one. It really does raise my hopes and expectations, usually this makes me worry that inflated expectations will make for disappointment. This was the case for The Winner's Curse, however I am hopeful for that sequel. Despite that bit of worry, I'm confident that Sarah will deliver just because I have read and loved the Throne of Glass series so much.

    I love the fact that this one has that traditional fairytale sort of feel, yet it's twisted a bit into something much more dark and fierce. I find these twisted fairytales so much more interesting and captivating.

    Tamlin ahhh!! He sounds like such a multi faceted love interest that's actually developed and not some walking/talking cardboard cutout. I can't wait to meet him and see his interactions with Feyre, and the slow burn romance develop realistically and will make me swoon.

    I'm also excited to see some of Maas' classic worldbuildling skills come to light. I think the juxtaposition between the amazing romance and the dark outside world would just be utterly stunning.

    Lovely review Allie <33 My excitement for this one continues to just grow and grow.

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    1. There's a reason you haven't - it's too awesome :P

      Honestly, I think this is so much better than the first Throne of Glass book was. I mean, obviously the ToG series as a whole is beyond epic, but this beat the first book hands down.

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  6. I had no doubts that this one would be amazing because it's by the QUEEN SARAH J MAAS but I'm overly jealous of the fact that you've already read this beauty and loved it and felt all the wonderful things SARAH J MAAS excels at making you feel things.

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    1. SHE IS THE QUEEN AND WE WILL BOW DOWN TO HER AND CELAENA! Lily, you will be Whatsapping me so many feels during this I cannot wait

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  7. GAH! I want to read this one so bad Allie! It sounds absolutely fantastic, and I am so glad that Sarah delivers again! I love the sound of how it takes the original Beauty and the Beast tale and adds fairies and magic on top of that. Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous review! <33

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    1. I'm 99% confident that it is impossible for me to to like something Sarah J Maas has written. Especially since it's Beauty and the Beast and that's just my FAVE <3

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  8. This sounds absolutely marvelous, and I'm glad you loved it so. My expectations are so high it's a little scary, but I'm still very excited to see what Maas does again. Wonderful reveiw!

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    1. Don't worry - you won't be let down, honest. I was scared I wouldn't like this that much but WOW. Blown away

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  9. I don't have words to use because I want this book SO badly. I haven't heard of anyone who hasn't loved it. And it's so pretty too. The characters sound amazing, the plot sounds amazing... why, oh why do I have to wait so long to read this!? Great review, you have made the wait kind of impossible ;)

    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight

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    1. The characters just completely make this book - each one of them is SO well-developed and OH MY GOD THE SWOON

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  10. HOW IS IT THAT YOU MAKE ME WANT EVERYTHING????????? AMD THIS ONE! THIS ONE THAT I CAN'T HAVE YET!!!!

    OH HOLY I want to read about this Tamlin. WHAT ARE THESE HOT SCENES HUH ;)

    I like the exploration of power. IT'S MY FAVOURITE. WHY ARE YOU TEASING ME WITH A MAY BOOK, ALLIE??

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    1. YOU DO IT TO ME SO NOW WE'RE EVEN ;)

      Jess, Tamlin is just . . . IT IS TOO HOT TO HANDLE JUST YOU WAIT YOU WILL BE ON FIRE.

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  11. So lucky you got to read it already!! *-*
    I cannot wait to have this book, May seems soooo far!!! :'(
    *cries hopelessly*

    Ps. I have a blog as well, if you want to stop by I'd appreciate it so much! It's both in Italian and in English :3 -> http://frannieinthepages.blogspot.com/

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    1. The wait will be so worth it though, honestly! This is definitely one of the best things Maas has written!

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  12. Gah I'm so frustrated. I NEED to read this. But I also need to read her Throne of Glass series, and gah where's the time?! But omg this sounds great. Especially the protagonist. i love kickass characters! Grest review, Allie!

    Marianne @Boricuan Bookworms..

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    1. Ooohhh you haven't read ToG? DO IT NOW OMG! Honestly, she writes the best heroines

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  13. I'll definitely check this out, I love me a good fantasy! Though, I'm a little worried if there was an insta-love? :) Awesome review, thanks for this.

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    1. Definitely no insta-love in sight. It's a gloriously well-developed romance!

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  14. Beautiful review. I've never read any of Maas' books, but I do hear good things. I used to think fantasy wasn't really my genre, but I'm curious!

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    1. If you're going to start on fantasy, Sarah J Maas is an amazing place to begin - she will get you to fall in love with the genre

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  15. I never had any doubts that Maas would be able to pull her strings again and churn out a wonderful, vivid, and fantastic book~ I already pre-ordered this one and I can't wait to get my hands on it! I wish its release date would come sooner!

    And oh, when I first saw the name Feyre, I had a quick heart attack, because I first read it was "Faye" (which is my name) and it would be just so awkward to read a girl with same name as I XDD

    Faye at The Social Potato

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    1. LOL, now that would be a nice coincidence! It is actually pronounced 'faye-rah' (If I remember tightly), so close enough :P

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  16. You're killing me! Just when I thought I couldn't be more excited! So few can pull off beautiful and dangerous at the same time but Maas does it so well. Plus, that writing!

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    1. Maas is a star at tugging at the heart strings while simultaneously building up a fantastic story with bundles of action. She's a bit of a genius, really!

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  17. That covers is crazy eye-catching! And the name Feyre is super awesome, don't you think?
    Your review pretty much hooked me, this book looks so compelling and I really think that it's the sort of thing that I would like to read! Great review, I'm totally honing in on this suggestion!

    Amy;
    Little Moon Elephant

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    1. I wasn't so keen on the cover at first when it was revealed, but then I saw it and realised it's anime-ish and was like YES. Because at first I thought it was another headless live-shot and blech, Hate those!

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  18. OMGGG I just received an ARC of this today and it sounds absolutely amazing, I can't wait to delve into the gorgeous prose and the amazing romance and characters! Great review Allie!

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    1. READ IT NOW JEANN OMG WE NEED TO DISCUSS TAMLIN

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  19. I'm so excited for this one! I'm reading Heir of Fire at the moment and can completely understand why this one is so hyped. You said it perfectly Allie, she's such an incredibly compelling author and can weave a storyline like nobodies business. Achingly intense romance... Allie you've completely sold me. I'd probably sell my own mother for a copy at this point.

    Wonderful review, just lovely <3

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    1. Heir of Fire IS THE BEST THING EVER. That book slayed me!!!

      Honestly, the romance in ACOTAR though, it's one of the best I've ever read

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  20. YAY!! I absolutely loved this one too, I shamelessly used B&B gifs in it, shhhhh. ;) SJM is totally the queen of writing compelling fantasies. I loved how she wrote the fae (SUCH HOTNESS) and the history and the culture and everything. The curse and B&B connections were so well done and those twists and turns had me gasping and flipping out. I love how strong Feyre is and oh yes, Tamlin is so complex and smolderingly hot. The prose was so eloquent and pretty. I loved the themes and the secondary characters and the world-building and everything. Lovely book, lovely review <33

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    1. Ohhh I was SO TEMPTED to GIF mine up a bit, but I resisted the urge (it was hard though, man). And yes the HOTNESS IN THIS. My God. I was on fire.

      And I loved the trials too! It was a great little twist and a new way to break the curse. Reallllllly thought that was well done!

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  21. I absolutely loved this one, such an incredible book. That romance was very swoon worthy.I've got my review all scheduled but it's not going up till closer to the release. I really loved that it had a really satisfying ending, even though it still had me desperate for the sequel. Maas can seriously do no wrong.

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  22. OH MY GOSH I'M SO EXCITED TO READ THIS AND I NEED TO EXPRESS THAT THROUGH ALL CAPS :D Amazing review Allie! I love Maas!

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  23. "She has a ferocity that completely turns the 'damsel' cliché fairytales are famous for on its head, and gives us a character full of fire and bravery."
    ^^^ I have already been excited for this book, but this doubles my excitement! It is May 5th yet? Great review, Allie :)

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  24. I read this book a few weeks ago and I still can not get over my feels. I'm pretty sure I would read anything she wrote about, she is a genius.

    Tamlin <3 LOVE!!!. He may not have rivalled Chaol for me but he came bloody close.

    Great review hun, now all we have to do is go sit in the corner, cry and wait for next year till the 2nd will come out :'(

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  25. Omgg 5 out of 5?? xD Well, it's not really surprising. I think I might love this read, If I don't I will be so disappointed... I have pre-ordered it already, and I'm glad to hear you loved it as well, I'm more excited now. Fantastic review <3 Benish | Feminist Reflections

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