BOOK SERIES REVIEW | A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

TITLE: A Court of Thorns and Roses
SERIES: A Court of Thorns and Roses #1
AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PAGE COUNT: 419 pages
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury Children’s
GENRE: Fantasy, Young Adult & Romance

SYNOPSIS: Feyre is a huntress.

She thinks nothing of slaughtering a wolf to capture its prey. But, like all mortals, she fears what lingers mercilessly beyond the forest. And she will learn that taking the life of a magical creature comes at a high price…

Imprisoned in an enchanted court in her enemy’s kingdom, Feyre is free to roam but forbidden to escape. Her captor’s body bears the scars of fighting, and his face is always masked – but his piercing stare draws her ever closer. As Feyre’s feeling for Tamlin begin to burn through every warning she’s been told about his kind, an ancient, wicked shadow grows.

Feyre must find a way to break a spell, or lose her heart forever.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

It has been two years since I read this book/series for the first time and till this day, I still love it with all my heart.

This series reread has been a lot of fun and I was honestly shocked to find how much I forgot. There were times where it felt as if I was reading the book for the first time because the plot twists and characters’ actions surprised me almost as much as they did years ago.

Many people would disagree with my rating for these books but honestly, Sarah J. Maas is one of my favourite authors and I genuinely enjoy her books. Either you like her—or any author’s—books or you do not and that is totally okay. Everyone has their own opinion and no one should feel obligated to change theirs because of others’.

Feyre is a character who I find to be a really strong and stubborn person. Despite all that happened to her, she does not give up and let things get to her. As all characters do, she has her flaws but that is what makes readers connect to her more.

I learned quite a few lessons throughout this book and still cried at the end. I do not want to get into too much detail in case I spoil it for someone who has not read the book yet. I cried for many reasons; for when she solved the riddle, for what Rhysand did and for what she sacrificed.

“We need hope as much as we need bread and meat,” he interrupted, his eyes clear for a rare moment. “We need hope, or else we cannot endure. So let her keep this hope, Feyre. Let her imagine a better life. A better world.”

“Bruises are harder to conceal than poverty.”

“You can’t write, yet you learned to hunt, to survive. How?”
I paused with my foot on the threshold.
“That’s what happens when you’re responsible for lives other than your own, isn’t it? You do what you have to do.”

Against slavery, against tyranny, I would gladly go to my death, no matter whose freedom I was defending.”

“Because I wouldn’t want to die alone,” I said, and my voice wobbled … “Because I’d want someone to hold my hand until the end, and awhile after that. That’s something everyone deserves, human or faerie.”

“Don’t feel bad for one moment about doing what brings you joy.”

I was as unburdened as a piece of dandelion fluff, and he was the wind that stirred me about the world.

“I love you,” he whispered, and kissed my brow. “Thorns and all.”

There are those who seek me a lifetime but never we meet,
And those I kiss but who trample me beneath ungrateful feet.
At times I seem to favor the clever and the fair,
But I bless all those who are brave enough to dare.
By large, my ministrations are soft-handed and sweet,
But scorned, I become a difficult beast to defeat.
For though each of my strikes lands a powerful blow,
When I kill, I do it slow …

Each of us has a beast roaming beneath our skin, roaring to get out.

I wanted to fade into it, wanted the light of that sun to burn me away, to fill me with such joy that I would become a ray of sunshine myself. This wasn’t music to dance to—it was music to worship, music to fill in the gaps of my soul, to bring me to a place where there was no pain.

“I love you,” I said. “No matter what she says about it, no matter if it’s only with my insignificant human heart. Even when they burn my body, I’ll love you.”

“Because,” he went on, his eyes locked with mine, “I didn’t want you to fight alone. Or die alone.”

“Be glad of your human heart, Feyre. Pity those who don’t feel anything at all.”

“I came to claim the one I love.”

“If it grieves you,” he said, the words caressing my bones, “then I don’t think it’s absurd at all.”

“His short black hair gleamed like a raven’s feathers, off-setting his pale skin and blue eyes so deep they were violet, even in the firelight.” 

“Then, like a shimmering disk too rich and clear to be described, the sun slipped over the horizon and lined everything with gold. It was like seeing the world being born, and we were the sole witnesses.” 

TITLE: A Court of Mist and Fury
SERIES: A Court of Thorns and Roses #2
AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PAGE COUNT: 626 pages
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury Children’s
GENRE: Fantasy, Young Adult & Romance 

SYNOPSIS: Feyre is immortal.

After rescuing her lover Tamlin from a wicked Faerie Queen, she returns to the Spring Court possessing the powers of the High Fae. But Feyre cannot forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people – nor the bargain she made with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court.

As Feyre is drawn ever deeper into Rhysand’s dark web of politics and passion, war is looming and an evil far greater than any queen threatens to destroy everything Feyre has fought for. She must confront her past, embrace her gifts and decide her fate.

She must surrender her heart to heal a world torn in two.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Out of all the books in the series, I loved this one most. It was a whirlwind of plot twists, heartache and special moments. I enjoyed it so, so much and it will always be one of my most favourite books. 

Honestly, I do not know what to say that I have not already said in the first book’s review. One thing that I would like to point out is that the character development was well done. Each character changed—some for the better and some for the worst. You could see deep into who they really are. It felt as if Sarah J. Maas took you deeper into the story, letting you see layers that you would not have seen from the surface.

All I can say is that I completely loved it! It is best book in the series.

I was the butcher of innocents, and the savior of a land.

I whirled, and through the night drifting away like smoke on a wind, I found Rhysand straightening the lapels of his black jacket. “Hello, Feyre darling,” he purred.

“Try to read it, Feyre.”
Prick. I snatched the paper to me, nearly ripping it in half in the process. I looked at the first word, sounding it out in my head. “Y-you … ” The next I figured out with a combination of my silent pronunciation and logic. “Look … ”
“Good,” he murmured.
“I didn’t ask for your approval.”
Rhys chuckled.
“Ab … Absolutely.” It took me longer than I wanted to admit to figure that out. The next word was even worse. “De … Del … ”
I deigned to glance at him, brows raised.
“Delicious,” he purred.
My brows now knotted. I read the next two words, then whipped my face toward him.
You look absolutely delicious today, Feyre?! That’s what you wrote?”

Rhysand is the most handsome High Lord.
Rhysand is the most delightful High Lord.
Rhysand is the most cunning High Lord.

…Rhysand is interesting; Rhysand is gorgeous; Rhysand is flawless…

“I expected an answer more along the lines of, ‘Don’t ask stupid questions you already know the answer to,’ or my timeless favorite, ‘Go to hell.’

“Rhysand is a spectacular person. Rhysand is the center of my world. Rhysand is the best lover a female can ever dream of.”

I’d taken to situating myself in one of the little lounges overlooking the mountains, and had almost read an entire book in the deep-cushioned armchair, going slowly as I learned new words. But it had filled my time—given me quiet, steadfast company with those characters, who did not exist and never would, but somehow made me feel less … alone.

“Where are we going?”
Rhys’s smile widened into a grin. “To Velaris—the City of Starlight.”

Maybe it’d be a mercy to be ended—
A broad hand gripped my face—gently enough not to hurt, but hard enough to make me look at him. “Don’t you ever think that,” Rhysand hissed, his eyes livid. “Not for one damned moment.”

“I once lived in a place where the opinion of others mattered. It suffocated me, nearly broke me. So you’ll understand me, Feyre, when I say that I know what you feel, and I know what they tried to do to you, and that with enough courage, you can say to hell with a reputation.” Her voice gentled, and the tension between them all faded with it. “You do what you love, what you need.”

“So I’m your huntress and thief?”
His hands slid down to cup the backs of my knees as he said with a roguish grin, “You are my salvation, Feyre.”

I was not a pet, not a doll, not an animal. I was a survivor, and I was strong. I would not be weak, or helpless again. I would not, could not be broken. Tamed.

“There are good days and hard days for me—even now. Don’t let the hard days win.”

…Feyre darling…

Life is better when you’re around.

My hands slackened at my sides. A reduced version of the symphony I’d heard in a chill dungeon, when I had been so lost to terror and despair that I had hallucinated—hallucinated as this music poured into my cell … and kept me from shattering.
And once more, the beauty of it hit me, the layering and swaying, the joy and peace.
They had never played a piece like it Under the Mountain—never this sort of music. And I’d never heard music in my cell save for that one time.
“You,” I breathed, not taking my eyes from the musicians playing so skillfully that even the diners had set down their forks in the cafés nearby. “You sent that music into my cell. Why?”
Rhysand’s voice was hoarse. “Because you were breaking. And I couldn’t find another way to save you.”

Because anger was better than feeling nothing; because anger and hatred were the long-lasting fuel in the endless dark of my despair.

“There are different kinds of darkness,” Rhys said. I kept my eyes shut. “There is the darkness that frightens, the darkness that soothes, the darkness that is restful.” I pictured each. “There is the darkness of lovers, and the darkness of assassins. It becomes what the bearer wishes it to be, needs it to be. It is not wholly bad or good.”

Love can be a poison.

“To the people who look at the stars and wish, Rhys.” He picked up his glass, his gaze so piercing … Rhys clinked his glass against mine. “To the stars who listen—and the dreams that are answered.”

To the huntresses who remember to reach back for those less fortunate—and water-wraiths who swim very, very fast.

Rhys still knelt, wings drooping across the white sheets, head bowed, his tattoos stark against his golden skin. A dark, fallen prince.

“Do not insult Feyre for speaking with her heart, with compassion for those who cannot defend themselves, when you speak from only selfishness and cowardice.”

A queen—a queen who bowed to no one, a queen who had faced them all down and triumphed. A queen who owned her body, her life, her destiny, and never apologized for it.

You are good, Rhys. You are kind. This mask does not scare me. I see you beneath it.

I will kill anyone who harms you,” Rhys snarled. “I will kill them, and take a damn long time doing it.” He panted. “Go ahead. Hate me—despise me for it.”

“He is lucky to have all of you.”
“No,” she said softly—more gently than I’d ever heard. “We are lucky to have him, Feyre.” I turned from the door. “I have known many High Lords,” Amren continued, studying her paper. “Cruel ones, cunning ones, weak ones, powerful ones. But never one that dreamed. Not as he does.”
“Dreams of what?” I breathed. “Of peace. Of freedom. Of a world united, a world thriving. Of something better—for all of us.”
“He thinks he’ll be remembered as the villain in the story.”
She snorted.
“But I forgot to tell him,” I said quietly, opening the door, “that the villain is usually the person who locks up the maiden and throws away the key.”
I shrugged. “He was the one who let me out.”

“Why does anything cling to something? Maybe they love wherever they’re going so much that it’s worth it. Maybe they’ll keep coming back, until there’s only one star left. Maybe that one star will make the trip forever, out of the hope that someday—if it keeps coming back often enough—another star will find it again.”

The smile the world would likely never see, the smile he’d given up for the sake of his people, his lands. He said softly, “I am … very glad I met you, Feyre.”

“When you spend so long trapped in darkness, you find that the darkness begins to stare back.”

He squeezed me gently, and I blinked at him through the rain. For once, his eyes were on me, not the landscape below. “You look good with wings,” he said, and kissed my brow.
Even the rain stopped feeling so cold.

He said softly, “I love it when you look at me like that.”
The purr in his voice heated my blood. “Like what?”
“Like my power isn’t something to run from. Like you see me.”

“Everything has its cost, Feyre. If the price of being strong enough to shield my people is that I have to struggle with that same power, then I don’t mind.”

“Did you think I would go with him?”
He paused mid-bite, then lowered his fork. “I heard every word between you. I knew you could take care of yourself, and yet … ” He went back to his pie, swallowing a bite before continuing. “And yet I found myself deciding that if you took his hand, I would find a way to live with it. It would be your choice.”
I sipped from my wine. “And if he had grabbed me?”
There was nothing but uncompromising will in his eyes. “Then I would have torn apart the world to get you back.”

“The High Lord of the Night Court is your mate.”

My friend through many dangers.
My lover who had healed my broken and weary soul.
My mate who had waited for me against all hope, despite all odds.

We were a song that had been sung from the very first ember of light in the world.

My mate. Death incarnate. Night triumphant.

Love—love was a balm as much as it was a poison.

And so Tamlin unwittingly led the High Lady of the Night Court into the heart of his territory.

TITLE: A Court of Wings and Ruin
SERIES: A Court of Thorns and Roses #3
AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PAGE COUNT: 699 pages
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury Children’s
GENRE: Fantasy, Young Adult & Romance

SYNOPSIS: Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s manoeuvrings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit – and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords – and hunt for allies in unexpected places. 

In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

After two years, I still cannot stop thinking about this series, the world and its characters. I do not want to get into too much detail with this book because I believe you just need to just dive in and experience everything for yourself.

This book had me on the edge of my seat. It had me smiling, terrified and sobbing. I love each of these characters so much and I wish I could have been there with them to hold their hand as they went through what they did.

I honestly do not think I will ever forget this magical world.

I’d always thought death would be some sort of peaceful homecoming—a sweet, sad lullaby to usher me into whatever waited afterward.

My rage had become a living thing inside my chest, an echoing heartbeat that soothed me to sleep and stirred me to waking.

Yet everyone insists Rhysand is soulless, wicked. But the male I knew was the most decent of them all.

I repeated their names silently, over and over into the darkness. Rhysand. Mor. Cassian. Amren. Azriel. Elain. Nesta.

My goal was bigger than revenge. My purpose greater than personal retribution.

Rhys nipped at my fingers, teeth snapping playfully. “Cruel, beautiful female.”
“My brave, bold, brilliant mate.”

He kissed my brow, my temple. “My darling Feyre.”

“I missed you. Every second, every breath.”

“When you erupt, girl, make sure it is felt across worlds.”

“But this is war. We don’t have the luxury of good ideas—only picking between the bad ones.”

“How lovely she is—new as a fawn and yet ancient as the sea. How she calls to you. A queen, as my sister once was. Terrible and proud; beautiful as a winter sunrise.”

Let some of the monster inside show.

…our greatest weakness can sometimes be our biggest strength.

…the most unlikely person can alter the course of history.

To the stars who listen—and the dreams that are answered.

And with that, the dark-haired female bid us good night—to go read until her eyes were bleeding, she claimed.

If Rhysand was Night Triumphant, I was the star that only glowed thanks to his darkness, the light only visible because of him.

Night Triumphant—and the Stars Eternal. If he was the sweet, terrifying darkness, I was the glittering light that only his shadows could make clear.

I see all of you, Rhys. And there is not one part that I do not love with everything that I am.

You bow to no one…

Cruel, beautiful High Lady, he purred, eyes twinkling.

If you fight for anything—fight now, to protect those you forgot. Let them know they’re not forgotten. Just this once.”

“I want you to hold me.”
Stars flickered to life in his eyes. “Always,” he promised, kissing my brow, his wings now enveloping me completely. “Always.”

She was a rose bloom in a mud field.

“Only you can decide what breaks you, Cursebreaker. Only you.”

“What—what can I do?” The words turned thin—brittle.
“Stay …,” it breathed. “Stay … until the end.”

“Then why come at all?”
“You … were kind. You … fought your fear. You were … kind,” it said again.
I began crying.

“Feyre Archeron,” the Suriel said again, gazing at the leafy canopy, the sky peeking through it. A painful inhale. “A request.”
I leaned close. “Anything.”
Another rattling breath. “Leave this world … a better place than how you found it.”

“You do not fear,” Rhys breathed. “You do not falter. You do not yield. You go in, you get her, and you come out again.”
I nodded again, holding his stare.
“Remember that you are a wolf. And you cannot be caged.”

“It’s a rare person to face who they truly are and not run from it—not be broken by it.”

“…I would never have learned that light can be found in even the darkest of hells. That kindness can thrive even amongst cruelty.”

Only I could allow the bad to break me. Only I could own it, embrace it.

“Mother hold you,” I whispered, reciting words I had not heard since that day Under the Mountain. “May you pass through the gates; may you smell that immortal land of milk and honey.” Flame ignited at my fingertips. All I could muster. All that was left. “Fear no evil. Feel no pain.” My mouth trembled as I breathed, “May you enter eternity.”

A world divided was not a world that could thrive.

Just staring—and listening to that beautiful laugh. My mate’s laugh. I rubbed a hand over my chest at that sound—the joy in it.

“When it’s time to go there,” I said quietly, “we go together.” “It’s a bargain,” he said, and kissed me gently.

“And will you come with me? On this adventure—and all the rest?” Rhys leaned forward and kissed me. “Always.”

Rhys fell into flight beside me, and when he smiled at me again as we sailed through the stars and the lights and the sea-kissed breeze, when he showed me all the wonders of Velaris, the glittering Rainbow a living river of color beneath us … When he brushed his wing against mine, just because he could, because he wanted to and we’d have an eternity of nights to do this, to see everything together … A gift. All of it.

TITLE: A Court of Frost and Starlight
SERIES: A Court of Thorns and Roses #3.1
AUTHOR: Sarah J. Maas
PAGE COUNT: 229 pages
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury YA
GENRE: Fantasy, Young Adult & Romance

SYNOPSIS: Hope warms the coldest night.

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. 

Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated–scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Two years ago, I binged the entire series just before this novella came out. 

I finished this in one sitting and really loved it. It was a quick and easy read as not much happened. This novella, to me, felt like a catch up with the characters after a long time of not being with them.

A Court of Frost and Starlight was written so that you could read from each characters’ perspective. In the end, the author also readied you for Nesta’s story that the reader will now be following.

I really enjoyed it and am really looking forward to see what will happen next!

Stars flickered around us, sweet darkness sweeping in. As if we were the only souls in a galaxy.

“To the blessed darkness from which we are born, and to which we return.”

“I think my heart knew you were mine long before I ever realized it.” 

“Dangerous words, Rhysand,” Amren warned, strutting through the door, nearly swallowed up by the enormous white fur coat she wore. Only her chin-length dark hair and solid silver eyes were visible above the collar. She looked—
“You look like an angry snowball,” Cassian said.

To the stars who listen, Feyre.
To the dreams that are answered, Rhys.

His eyes gleamed, and he buried his face between my breasts again, hands caressing my back.
“I love you,” he breathed. “More than life, more than my territory, more than my crown.”

“I will never stop being grateful to have you in my life, either, Feyre darling. And no matter what lies ahead”—a small, joyous smile at that—“we will face it together. Enjoy every moment of it together.”

Deep inside me, rising with every swirling flake, a sparkling, crisp power stirred. I was High Lady of the Night Court.

“She had always been drawn to the untamed, wild things of the world.”

“You were born on the longest night of the year.” His fingers again stroked down my back. Lower. “You were meant to be at my side from the very beginning.” 

Sarah J. Maas is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Throne of Glass series, as well as the A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Sarah lives in Bucks County, PA, and over the years, she has developed an unhealthy appreciation for Disney movies and bad pop music. She adores fairy tales and ballet, drinks too much tea, and watches an ungodly amount of TV. When she’s not busy writing, she can be found exploring the historic and beautiful Pennsylvania countryside with her husband and canine companion.

Keep on reading, and never stop telling stories.

4 thoughts on “BOOK SERIES REVIEW | A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

  1. Yessss BLESS!!! I totally agree, I gave a bit of a lower rating to acotar and acofas (4 stars) but I still love these books and SJM to death haha!! Acomaf is so clearly the best one let’s not lie 😂

    Liked by 1 person

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