Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1
As Winter moves through the Mortal Lands, draining the land of precious resources and pushing the inhabitants to their limits, Feyre, youngest of three sisters, fights to keep her family fed. When a hunting trek puts her face-to-face with an unusual wolf, she makes a decision that will cost her her freedom. Feyre kills the wolf and when a creature from the Faerie Realms of Prythian comes looking for her, he gives her a choice: death or spend the rest of her life in Prythian. But nothing is as it seems in Feyre’s new home and her captive Tamlin may not be the beast she first thought.
“He whirled toward me, those yellow eyes wide, hackles raised. His low growl reverberated in the empty pit of my stomach as I surged to my feet, snow churning around me, another arrow drawn.”
Loosely based on Beauty and the Beast, Sarah J. Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses takes place in a land ruled by Fae. Beautiful, yet dangerous creatures, the Fae have become something hated and feared by the dwindling population of humans living in the Mortal Lands. Feyre, knowing her skills are the only reason her family hasn’t perished, resents Tamlin’s offer to spare her life when her absence essentially guarantees her family’s demise. Though a mere human, Feyre is bold and fearless in her quest to find a way to return to her family. Tamlin and Feyre are slow to warm to each other, the former discovers a burdened soul similar to his own in Feyre and she in turn finds someone who appreciates all she has to offer.
Fae politics are at work throughout the novel and though several well-known myths about the lovely and deadly creatures prove false, their cunning ways and the playful manner in which they deal with humans are terrifying. There are several minor characters who play important roles in the story and who promise to be even more prominent in the sequel. Lucien, close friend to Tamlin, has endured enough pain to justify his own book and Rhysand, a Fae from the Night Court, is an ambiguous character at best. One character who really surprised me and who I hope to see more of is Feyre’s sister Nesta. Though she has an astringent personality, there is also strength and a fierceness they may even rival Feyre’s.
A Court of Thorns and Roses felt a little slow at times and though it’s probably a little unfair, I do think the Throne of Glass series is better at conveying the different facets of its characters. I’m also not entire sold on the direction the story looks to be moving, but that might just be my reaction to what promises to be another emotionally-charge series. Still, Sarah J. Maas continues to impress me with her beautiful writing and world-building, both of which were on point in this series opener.