Title: A Court of Mist and Fury
Author : Sarah J. Maas
Publisher : Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Release date : May 3rd, 2016
Rating : 5/5
Synopsis (from Goodreads) :
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.
When has a sequel ever been better than the first book? Seriously, WHEN?!
ACOMAF blew my mind away in a way I never would’ve guessed… Utterly, and completely. This book is GOLD.
The writing is so, so good. Among all the YA novels I’ve read, I can easily say Sarah J. Maas has one of the most impeccable writing styles. She pens down all the right intonations, has great timing in her prose, and successfully conveys everything she wants to, thanks to her way to manipulate the language. The author knows just what to say to convey the importance of something, whether it be a fact or an event. Therefore, the reader immediately understands what she wants them to understand: feelings, thoughts, mental conflicts.
The journeys to other Courts are magical! My biggest wish throughout my reading was to go visit those places, and see them with my own eyes because wow. Instead, I made another post where I show you how I see them. The imagery is really evocative and I think Maas really used her own fantasies to create such dream-like settings. We also encounter all kinds of creatures, and the story never stalls, as adventures or relevant scenes are abundant in this sequel.
For a YA fantasy book writer, Maas isn’t afraid to go deep into her characters, as it is shown in her very realistic portrayal of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If you’ve been following my reviews, you would know that I always highlight mental disorders in my readings. It’s a subject to which I’m sensitive, because I’m interested in how the mind works. In my (very amateur-ish) opinion, I believe Maas did a great job at describing PTSD and depression (not in their full spectrum, but at least some symptoms of it), and thus how Feyre felt after her ordeal with Amarantha. I felt really bad for her, I sympathized a lot, and I understand her mistrust and repulsion at certain things. However, I was a bit disappointed: I thought Feyre would have been stronger, maybe? I would’ve thought a girl like her would have taken more to break, but oh well. Once I got far enough in my reading, I got over it and just chose to sympathize with her.
A new thing that completely amazed me, and that I seriously consider adding to my criteria for books, is that Maas literally fixes every issue I could find in the book. As soon as I found a problem, an inconsistency or a doubt, she would patch things up, offer something to fix that problem, explain the why’s and the how’s. Like… WOW. That was seriously awesome. Although it’s not an issue, exactly, I still found that the timeframe is a bit short. If I’m correct, Feyre has been in Prythian for around a year? So I think, with all the events and twists and turns, it does seem a bit nonsensical?… Also, some things were just too convenient. I really thought that Maas pushed it a bit too much on some occasions. But these are not big minuses, as I still adored the book, so… meh!
In ACOMAF, we meet again Feyre, Tamlin, Rhysand & Co. And here there will be a few (kinda) spoilers.
Tamlin, at first, annoyed me a little bit. I get it, right? After everything they’ve been through, he wants to protect Feyre. But boy, she’s the one who saved the entire realm. She can take care of herself, but all he ever wants is for her to stay home and paint and whatever-else. But as the story progresses, my mind changed slowly but surely. I realized that, if we put it into perspective, Tamlin only loves Feyre because he had to. And yet again, my mind changed: Tamlin has been so damaged by Amarantha that he became toxic to people around him. At this point, I couldn’t ship them anymore. This was a toxic relationship. He needs time to heal, but he’s so caught up in the running of his Court that, instead of breathing, he chokes others. And Feyre is the most obvious victim. He doesn’t care about her well-being, he only cares about keeping his possessions safe from everyone else. He literally locked her up in the house, for heaven’s sake! I mean, who does that??? Who…???? Ugh. Maas handles well the situation, it was perfect. Tamlin’s insufferable, he’s self-pitying, and he genuinely thinks he’s doing this for her own good… The epitome of an abuser.
As for Rhysand… he was perfect. The way I see it, Maas really puts into perspective who is good and who is bad, and most importantly, that there is no black and white. The dive into the Night Court challenges what we knew of this Court, and what we discover as the truth. Rhys is such a gentleman, and considerate, and cares so much for his people. Oh and, he’s HOT. I’m probably influenced by all the *ahem* scenes he participated in, but my opinion still stands: Rhys is swoonworthy. But the downside to this 180-degree-turn is that I also felt that Maas was shoving Rhys down our throat. She’s constantly comparing him and Tamlin, the point obviously being to prove that Tamlin is a monster and Rhys is actually the best. And that he’s too perfect. When I came to recognize this… manipulation, my mind rebelled against it, but I was already under Rhys’ spell…
Overall, ACOMAF is a fantastic sequel, even better than ACOTAR. I seriously recommend it! The writing and character development were phenomenal. Really, it deserves a standing ovation! Wow!