A Court of Frost and Starlight

Title: A Court of Frost and Starlight
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses series, a novella
Genre: Fantasy, NA, Romance, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: May 1st, 2018

Note: This post reviews a novella of the A Court of Thorns and Roses series. You may like to read the first three books in the series, A Court of Thorns and Roses, A Court of Mist and Fury, and A Court of Wings and Ruin before reading this review. 

Additional Note: I would like to emphasize that this series is written more toward the New Adult genre than the Young Adult genre. Because the NA genre focuses on protagonists in the 18-30 age range, the content, especially the sexual content and the language, is much more mature than the average YA novel. 

Let me begin by saying that I really do like this series. I especially loved the third book, A Court of Wings and Ruin. The characterization was rich, the writing was better than the first and second books (for the most part), and the finalé was pretty powerful. When I reached the end of book 3, I realized that Maas planned to continue the series – when it would have made a perfect trilogy! There is such a thing as dragging out a series too long, and I’m worried about this happening with an already good series. Is this going to become another Throne of Glass series for Maas, where we are now waiting for the eighth book in the series to be released?

Once I accepted the fact that the series was TBC, I eventually looked forward to the release of ACOFAS. I had my reading calendar (nerd) marked for the books’s release in May, as some of you might recall from an earlier post. I hadn’t known that, unlike the other three books in the series, it was in fact a novella. But the length of the book wasn’t what bothered me.

What bothered me about A Court of Frost and Starlight was the utter lack of plot.

I’m serious, guys. Nothing. Happened. I gave myself a few days in between reading the book and writing this review to have a clear head, but when I think back to the book, I remember the characters planning a party, shopping for gifts, exchanging gifts, having conversations, and – oh yeah, it’s Maas – having sex. I’m sorry if this is an unpopular opinion, but I do not think this makes for a good book, not even a good novella. There was no tension, no suspense, no plot.

The one thing this book had going for it was – the best part of this series! – the characters. I love Feyre, Rhys, Cassian, Nesta, and the rest – but… having great characters who simply interact with each other on the page, no matter how much we love them, is not enough. They have to do something – and they need to do more than plan parties and shop for gifts.

Having said this, if you plan to continue with the series, you should probably not skip this novella. It does set the reader up – barely – for what is to come, mostly concerning Nesta. The last ten pages of the book – the sneak peak of what is to come – offered more to the reader than the 250-page novella.

After all that, I just have to add… isn’t that cover a stunner?!

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

Hello, 2018!

Happy New Year, everyone! I’m sorry I didn’t make my weekly post on Monday (and I haven’t missed a Monday since I started about 16 months ago!), but at least I am posting this week. I was partying too hard welcoming in the new year. (And when I say “partying” I mean “Disneying!”)

As we all turn our attention on the new year, I wanted to share with you some of the books that I am anxiously awaiting to hit the shelves this year. Here are my top YA books for 2018!

A Court of Frost and Starlight, book 4 of the A Court of Thorns and Roses series – May 2018

War Storm, book 4 of the Red Queen series – May 2018

The Orphan’s Wish, book 8 of Hagenheim series – June 2018

Throne of Glass book 7 (Untitled) – Fall 2018

Are any of these books on your To Read list too?

A Court of Wings and Ruin


Title: A Court of Wings and Ruin
Author: Sarah J. Maas

Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses series, book 3
Genre: Fantasy, NA, Romance, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s 
Release Date: May 2nd, 2017

Note: This post reviews the third book of the A Court of Thorns and Roses Series. You may like to read the first two books in the series, A Court of Thorns and Roses and A Court of Mist and Fury, before reading this review. 

Additional Note: I would like to emphasize that this series is written more toward the New Adult genre than the Young Adult genre. Because the NA genre focuses on protagonists in the 18-30 age range, the content, especially the sexual content and the language, is much more mature than the average YA novel. 

Feyre is back in the hands of Tamlin, after an encounter with the King of Hybern that went horribly wrong. Tamlin, in his rage and desperation, made a deal with the King in exchange for Feyre, as if she were a possession he was trying to get back. What Tamlin didn’t know was that Nesta and Elain, Feyre’s sisters, would be dragged into it. During the encounter, the cauldron is brought forth and, to Feyre’s horror, used on her own sisters. They are Made, as she was, Fae. In the end, Feyre willingly agrees to go with Tamlin and Rhysand leaves with Nesta and Elain, both playing a part. (This is where book two left us.)

While Feyre is back in the Spring Court with Tamlin, she plays the part of the submissive female at Tamlin’s side, all the while working as a spy. She does everything she can to bring him down, including turning his own people against him. She cannot stomach how he stooped so low as to work with the King of Hybern, and then used her family. Any trace of the love they shared in the first book is long gone.

Thankfully, Feyre does not have to spend much time deceiving Tamlin, and is back at the Night Court with Rhys before long. Much of the book is spent in preparation for war – Hybern is coming to Prythian. Feyre continues to train with Cassian, and to learn to fly with Azriel, but her sisters refuse to join in. They hate what has been done to them, hate that they are now Fae. We see more of them in this book than the other two, and we also see the budding romance develop between Cassian and Nesta (in between their verbal sparring) and the could-be romance between Elain and Lucien (her mate). As we reach the end of book, the Archeron sisters become more important than ever in the war against Hybern.

Let me say again how much I love this series as a whole! (I did give it 5 roses, after all.) But even with such a high rating, there are a just a few things I want to mention to really give it an honest review:

  1. WHY IS THIS NOT A TRILOGY?! Sorry, but why is this not a trilogy? I think it is absolutely perfect the way it is. There are no loose ends, everything has been wrapped up beautifully, and the ending is so satisfying. So again, why is there another book coming in 2018? Not everything has to be a long series, and I for one think Maas wrote a very strong trilogy. I don’t even know what the next book will be about, unless it focuses on different characters. The story of Feyre and Rhysand has already been wrapped up so…?
  2. The love scenes. Does anyone else feel that if you have read one of the love scenes in this series, you have read them all? Seriously. As intense as they are, Maas definitely has her favorite words that she likes to go back to when she writes a descriptive love scene. If you can’t find different ways to express what the characters are feeling and experiencing, then it does start to feel like I have read it before. (And let me say that I absolutely love Feyre and Rhysand and their relationship, which I believe is healthy and full of mutual respect and focused on empowering the other person.)
  3. The ellipses. Maybe I’m getting too picky now, but… what is up with all the ellipses? I just randomly opened to a page in the book and I counted… five of them. I get that Maas is trying to make the writing conversational… so that it is like we see into the mind of Feyre… but don’t they start to lose their punch when you use them so… regularly? They should be used… more sparingly, in my opinion. Otherwise, they become… tiresome.
  4. The fragmented sentence structure. Again, this probably ties into the conversational way of writing, meant for us to feel close to Feyre. Like we are reading her thoughts. As if we were experiencing what she is experiencing. I have had to reread sentences several times because I don’t understand what she is trying to say. Before I realize that it is a fragmented sentence. I think incomplete sentences are fine sprinkled here and there, but Maas does it all the time. And when it becomes distracting to the reader, it slows the story down.

Sorry if I am being too harsh, but these were some things I kept thinking about as I was reading the series. My opinions may be unpopular, but I’m trying to give it a real review. Still, my rating of 5 roses stands, because these books really have become a new favorite! Sarah J. Maas is a captivating writer and I look forward to reading any other book she ever writes.

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

  

A Court of Mist and Fury


Title: A Court of Mist and Fury
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses series, book 2
Genre: Fantasy, NA, Romance, YA
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s
Release Date: May 3rd, 2016

Note: This post reviews the second book of the A Court of Thorns and Roses Series. You may like to read the first book in the series, A Court of Thorns and Roses, before reading this review. 

Additional Note: I would like to emphasize that this series is written more toward the New Adult genre than the Young Adult genre. Because the NA genre focuses on protagonists in the 18-30 age range, the content, especially the sexual content and the language, is much more mature than the average YA novel. 

Feyre is not the same girl we met in A Court of Thorns and Roses. She committed unspeakable horrors when she went Under the Mountain to save Tamlin. And even though she was able to free Tamlin – and all other faeries – from Amarantha’s curse, something in Feyre broke. She is unhappy with her life at the Spring Court, and cannot forget what she has done. It doesn’t help that Tamlin, afraid of losing her again, practically keeps her under lock and key. He does so out of love and an overwhelming need to protect, but ultimately drives her away – to the last place, and person, she thought she would find refuge.

Her agreement to spend a week of every month with Rhysand, the High Lord of the Night Court, turns into so much more than their original bargain. Instead of the selfish, arrogant monster that she had always thought him to be, Feyre finds a selfless, kind High Lord who will do anything to keep his court – and the one woman he can’t live without – safe. But his idea of protection is different than Tamlin’s: while the High Lord of the Spring Court protects through fear and control, the High Lord of the Night Court protects through trust and selfless love. And with the impending attack from the King of Hybern across the sea, all seven courts have reason to be protective of what is theirs.

Feyre, no longer a weak mortal, but a Made fae, comes into her own in this book. She is no one’s pet, and no one is her master. She finds her strength in equality – she is no less than even her High Lord. Because she was Made from the powers of all seven High Lords, she possesses some of each of their individual powers, making her, perhaps, the most powerful Fae of them all.

I surprised myself by giving this book such a high rating, because it took me a very long time to accept what was happening. I could sense the new direction of this sequel, and I didn’t want to like where it led, probably because I loved the first book so much. But as more and more is revealed in the second book, it became impossible not to approve of the shift in Feyre’s emotions and beliefs. We see an even truer love story in the second book than we did in the first, and it satisfies the reader in every possible way.

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series:

  

A Court of Thorns and Roses


Title: A Court of Thorns and Roses
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses series, book 1
Genre: Fairytale, Fantasy, NA, Romance, YA 
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s
Release Date: May 5th, 2015 

 

Note: I would like to emphasize that this series is written more toward the New Adult genre than the Young Adult genre. Because the NA genre focuses on protagonists in the 18-30 age range, the content, especially the sexual content and the language, is much more mature than the average YA novel. 

19-year-old Feyre has supported her struggling family for years by hunting for meat and skins to sell. But now it seems she has gone too far. Feyre must answer for the life she took, even though it was only the life of a wolf. But when another wolf comes to claim her life in exchange for the life she has taken, she realizes it was not only a wolf, but one of the faeries from north of The Wall. (Hmm, anyone think Game of Thrones for a second? It’s a little bit of that, in new/young adult form.)

Her captor, Tamlin, turns out to be not just another faerie, but the High Lord of the Spring Court, one of the seven courts of faeries: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter, Dawn, Day, and Night. This High Lord, like the others, can shape-shift from human to animal form whenever he wishes.

Even though Feyre has been raised to hate the faeries, after their long history of violence and cruelty toward humans, Tamlin begins to make her see them differently. He shows her that not all faeries are alike, and not all of them abuse their strength and power. While she lives in the Spring Court with Tamlin, Feyre begins to better understand their kind and let go of her own prejudices and hatred. A friendship slowly forms between Feyre and Tamlin, and it does not take long for them to be swept off into a passionate romance.

But all is not well in the Spring Court. Feyre sees that some kind of curse hangs over Tamlin and the faeries of his court. She desperately wants to help him, but does not know how. By the time she unravels the mystery hanging over the Spring Court, it may be too late to break the curse. Will Feyre be able to save Tamlin, the only man she has ever truly loved? Will she find a way to break the curse over him and his court? Will she be strong enough to defeat the her that is responsible for the terrible curse in the first place?

In this breathtaking, heart-racing retelling of the classic fairytale Beauty and the Beast, Sarah J. Maas grabs ahold of you and doesn’t let go till the end. If you love fairytale retellings with action, fantasy, and an oh-so-steamy love story, then this book may be written just for you.

Click on the links below to get your copy of this book and the others in its series: