Published: May 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children's
Copy Provided by: Borrowed
A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Timesbestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.
When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.
As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.
Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!
I'm a huge fan of Sarah J Mass' Throne of Glass series so I was very excited for this new series to arrive...but a little hesitant. It is hard to read your favourite author when you already have pre-conceived expectations about the likability of a new series. Well people, I WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED. Court of Thorns is spell-binding and action packed and I found it very difficult to put it down. In fact, I believe I may even have put my entire life on hold to finish the last half of the book. I think I told my 6 year old that she was free to choose any cereal she wanted for dinner as long as I was able to keep reading. Tsk! tsk! Bad Mommy!!
So let's dive in, shall we? Feyre is the main character in the story and she grows up in a brutal environment. She is has to hunt in order to find food for her entire family and her sisters are almost like the wicked sisters in Cinderella (although not as NASTY but definitely ungrateful). About 11% of the way through I was already feeling like this novel was a bit of Cinderella/Hunger Games and Beauty and the beast all swirled together in a fairy mash-up!
Not too long after we learn of her harsh life, a situation occurs whereby fairies come and take Feyre away. She is not a slave though. Nor is she a prisoner. But she does have to commit the rest of her life to living with the fairies for an accidental injustice. They may taunt her a little but they are hardly torturous. She has heard of all these fables of fairies but has never met one until now and while he seems harsh, he brings her to his castle and has not hurt or harmed her. The problem is, despite his "caring" for her basic needs, Feyre is very suspicious of Tamlin and she is so stubborn and angry and cannot accept the kindness he has offered.
Something happens about 37% of the way in and I have to hand it to Freyre, she has guts. Either she is fearless or incredibly stupid to do the the things that she does in pursuing her goals. She faces unknown creatures with knowledge that may or may not be accurate. Yet she strikes out into the unknown to find the answers she needs. Further down in the book, Freyre does more to make me wonder if she has a death wish. Her listening skills are horrible!! Why would she not stay in the safety of the house during the festival? How reckless is she when there are creatures roaming about (again, with unknown abilities, skills and natures). Not only that but she was very strongly THREATENED NOT TO attend the ceremony and yet she did and caused undo stress upon herself and Lucien.
A few notes on the characters
Tamlin is one of the other main characters in Court of Thorns and Roses. I like how he becomes less of a beast and more human-like with complex emotions rather than the raw power and instinct of an animal. In his court, he doesn't seem to play the same fairy games as the rest of the courts and is very conscientious of caring for his subjects.
As the story progresses, you see Freyre change in amazing ways. The strength of this character is phenomenal. I was expecting the novel to revolve around Tamlin and the fairy realm but it really did revolve around Freyre and how she gains an understanding of herself and conquers fears, faces incredible odds and does it all for someone she loves.
Although I hated Rhysand to begin with, especially when he made Tamlin beg, I started to develop a liking to him as we learned how he was also trapped by Amarantha. I guess it is a case of choosing the lesser evil when you befriend or assist the fae. I am expecting to like him more and more as the series progresses.
The ending to this story just blew me away. I LOVED IT. In fact, for the last 3/4 of the book, I stopped writing notes because I didn't want to take the time out to stop reading!!
So my conclusion about Court of Thorns is to definitely read this title. It is an exhilarating beginning to Sarah J Mass' new series. Can't wait for book 2!!
For those of you recommending this title, you should know that things get to be highly sexually charged at one point in the book and sex does play a role in this series. You might want to hold back from recommending it to a younger audience. It definitely has more mature themes.