So I continued this series, partly due to all the hype from the third book, and I wasn’t disappointed!
Spoiler Free Review
Title: A Court of Mist and Fury
Author: Sarah J Maas
Published: Bloomsbury, 2016
(from GR) Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.
Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.
I fell for the hype – and what a wonderful fall it was! This book was so much better than the first one. So much better – at least for me (though I’ve heard lots of other readers agree!). I feel like that might have been partly down to a few reasons. One, I read this in a much better way this time – no other books on the go, and pretty much over one weekend. Two, Maas didn’t have to go to the trouble of a lot of world building because that had already been done in the first book, and we could just fly straight in. And three, she got to introduce us to such interesting characters – some old and some new – that made this book so exciting!
Let’s be clear about one thing from the outset again. You can enjoy a book and still acknowledge that there are flaws. Big flaws, if we’re getting real here. I mean, come on. Don’t create such a big world, full of hundreds of characters, and not make them diverse. I can see that, I recognise that, I think it can be bettered. And that’s what I’m hoping for the in the third book – yet to read, but probably very soon. So yeah, there’s that. But there are also a lot of things I think she did right in this book.
I really appreciated the fact that she focussed throughout the book on Feyre’s experiences from ACOTAR, and how this has affected her mental wellbeing. I think this was a real strength in the book. There are so many YA series in this genre that sweep a character’s experiences under the rug in order to continue the action and make the reading exciting. I’m seeing series acknowledge the mental health of characters more now, which is such a relief! It made the story feel more real, and be ultimately more satisfying as you see Feyre conquer – but not defeat, because these things are never truly forgotten – some of her blackest moments.
I also liked the fact that Maas addressed how controlling Tamlin’s actions were in ACOTAR and the start of this novel, and highlighted that relationships don’t have to be that way. It was refreshing to watch as Feyre opened up to another male and created strong friendships in others who weren’t going to lock her away, regardless of the reasons. This is something I’ll be eager to see continued in the third book.
Overall I found this reading experience to be more fruitful and exciting. I enjoyed meeting a new cast of characters – who felt so much more fleshed out that some from the Spring Court – and seeing how Feyre interacted with them. I enjoyed watching Feyre feel out her new powers and see how her experiences can make her stronger. I enjoyed watching her enter a relationship (YAYAYAYAYAYAYAY) so different from the one she finishes – and was glad that the whole experience of ending and starting a relationships was given. Nothing worse than a new relationship just thrown at a character without anything in the middle. I also enjoyed the build towards the end of the novel, and it’s set up such a good beginning for the next book.
There was a certain amount of predictability to this book in terms of what was going to happen – quite a few moments where I was thinking about what could happen and it actually did. In this genre I like to be kept on my toes and there were quite a few points where I could tell what was coming next, which was a little disappointing. That, combined with the lack of diversity, lowered my rating.
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
I enjoyed this book – definitely felt this was the stronger of the two. And there were lots of aspects I found to be powerful, but also things that it lacked. I’m eager to see where this part of the series concludes in the third book. Which is just sitting right there waiting for me on the shelf. That’s one for the June TBR, I think.
See you in the next post!