A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
Genre: Fiction, new adult, fantasy, magic, faeries, retelling, mythology, Sarah J. Maas stop everything you’re doing and publish book 3
Rating: Every damn star in the night sky
Summary: After risking her life for the high lord of the Spring Court, Feyre is left to deal with the emotional damage caused by her time under the mountain, all while planning her impending nuptials. Despite the wedding however, Feyre can’t help but remember the bargain she struck with the high lord of the Night Court, a bargain which will change her life forever.
I usually don’t review books that are part of our Spines with Wines book club because they’ll inevitably be reviewed three separate times in three separate posts, but I have so much to say about A Court of Mist and Fury. So. Fucking. Much.
And it goes without saying because this is a second book, but there will definitely be spoilers for A Court of Thorns and Roses, not to mention a few for this story as well — you have been warned.
I am a very recent and very big Sarah J. Maas fan, and this book? This is her best one yet. Full of action, adventure, jaw-dropping twists, a painful slow burn romance, vivid descriptions and lush writing (not to mention tragic backstories), ACOMAF is a 600 page book that reads like a 200 page book. I never wanted it to end.
So what makes this books so amazing? Would it be cheating to say everything? Because everything.
For those of you who were lukewarm to Feyre, get ready to root for this bad ass! The events under the mountain have left her largely changed, and not just because she came back from the dead and was granted immortality. Scarred by the tortures committed by Amarantha, Feyre goes through a fully realized character arc. We’re talking “holy character development, Batman” territory.
She’s helped along in finding herself by a brand new cast of characters, all of whom are willing to take Feyre under their occasionally literal wings. Talk about serious squad goals.
And shining (or rather darkening?) above the rest of them is Rhysand. You remember Rhysand of course? Your book boyfriend? He’s back and better than ever. A feminist through and through — true story — it’s Rhysand not Tamlin who takes center stage in this novel and I loved every second of it. Rather than choosing to imprison Feyre like Tamlin, who has very damaging ideas about needing to protect her at all costs, Rhys allows Feyre to be her own person and work through her pain at her own speed.
I know a large portion of the Team Tamlin fandom is upset at the turn the book took (the vast majority of the tale is spent at the Night Court with a fun foray to the Summer Court), but even in the first book Tamlin is less than perfect. He manipulates Feyre in order to break the curse, essentially kidnapping her (Stockholm Syndrome much?) and when she does sacrifice herself for him under the mountain he’s useless, only escaping to make out with her rather than turning the tables and fighting for her.
Go back and read it if you don’t believe me, and take note of the part where Tamlin bruises Feyre, telling Lucien it’s her fault for leaving her room.
Speaking of Lucien (my darling Lucien), he also gets a slap on the wrist for his behavior this time around. Even though he can clearly see that continuing to hold Feyre hostage is bad for her, he allows Tamlin to do it. For fear of hurting his friend? Because he doesn’t want to disagree with his lord? It’s unclear, but I am sorely disappointed in him. I knew Tamlin was a lost cause the second ACOTAR went under the mountain, but losing my faith in Lucien I did not see coming. Please redeem yourself in the third book boo, I miss your bromance with Feyre!
Despite this being a Hades and Persephone retelling — which should hint a whole damn lot about the plot — there was not a whiff of Stockholm Syndrome in sight, which was a huge fear of mine going into the story. Instead, Feyre is allowed to make her own decisions and choose her own path in the wars to come, because war is coming.
Not that that matters though, because this book was really all about two things: the amazing romance and the steamy sex scenes. Hey, it’s not labeled new adult for nothing.
- Rhysand and Feyre
- Rhysand and his amazing squad
- Rhysand and the spectacular world-building
- Rhysand and the plot surrounding him
- Rhysand and the crazy twists
- The sexiness that is Rhysand — especially his feminist stance which is the sexiest thing of all
- By the Cauldron, did you even read my review?
This entire novel is one long beautiful quote, but here’s a few I particularly enjoyed:
- “My mate. Death incarnate. Night triumphant.”
- “This issue isn’t whether he loved you, it’s how much. Too much. Love can be a poison“
- “When you spend so long trapped in darkness, Lucien, you find that the darkness begins to stare back.“
- “No one was my master — but I might be master of everything, if I wished. If I dared.”
- “There are good days and hard days for me — even now. Don’t let the hard days win.”
- “I am broken and healing, but every piece of my heart belong to you.”
- “He thinks he’ll be remembered as the villain in the story. But I forgot to tell him that the villain is usually the person who locks up the maiden and throws away the key. He was the one who let me out.”
- “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.”
- “I was his and he was mine, and we were the beginning and middle and end. We were a song that had been sung from the very first ember of light in the world.”
According to the internet, the third book will be the last in the series, but honestly? I could read twenty more books set in this universe. Screw the Throne of Glass books, this is the Sarah J. Maas series you should be reading.