When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a terrifying creature arrives to demand retribution. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she knows about only from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not truly a beast, but one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled her world.
At least, he’s not a beast all the time.
As she adapts to her new home, her feelings for the faerie, Tamlin, transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But something is not right in the faerie lands. An ancient, wicked shadow is growing, and Feyre must find a way to stop it, or doom Tamlin―and his world―forever.
Amazon Link: A Court of Thorns and Roses (Book 1)
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Genre: Dark Fantasy
Rating: 5/5 stars
I know that some people really love Sarah J. Maas and other people hate her. I wanted to form an opinion for myself, so I decided to try out one of her series. This one caught my interest because I love books about the Fae and fairy tale retellings. Someone made the mistake of shelving it under Young Adult but I will just say that it’s definitely not a book for teens. Maybe New Adult?
I can see why Maas is so popular. She has very vivid writing and a flair for the dramatic which kept me hooked. The story is inspired by Beauty and the Beast and the Ballad of Tamlin, but there a lot of unexpected twists and fresh perspectives on these traditional tales. I was afraid there would be too much emphasis on the romance, but it was actually more about the intricacies of the Fae realm and the main character, Feyre, learning to survive as a human with no magic.
Things really switched up toward the end when she had to face the Faerie Queen’s challenges. Feyre showed smarts and bravery to outwit a truly terrifying enemy. I wasn’t sure where the new relationship with Rhysand was going, but I guess I will have to read the next book to find out. In this book is a great new spin on fairy tales and the Fae with a dark flavor.
Content warning: there is explicit sex and violence, with not all of the sex being consensual. Torture, mind control, with psychological and physical abuse. It didn’t feel like it was gratuitous or done just for shock value because the effects stay with the characters and have future story implications, but it’s treading a line and some people feel that it crosses the line.
I would recommend this book to fans of the Kushiel’s Legacy series by Jacqueline Carey, Tanith Lee’s adult fairy tales, and the Yarnsworld series by Benedict Patrick. If you’re looking for a lighthearted fairy tale romance, this isn’t the book for you.
Here’s the book in my reading journal: