While being on winter break, I have had the opportunity to get more reading done. I recently devoured the book A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas.
The book is YA fantasy based on the classic Beauty and the Beast (which is perfect with all the new movie trailers). Feyre is the nineteen year old protagonist struggling to keep her father and two sisters alive in the mortal world. When she kills a magical wolf in the woods, a beast comes to demand retribution (sound somewhat familiar?!?). To repay her life debt, Feyre joins the land of the faeires, a place she has been taught to fear, and lives in the faery Tamlin’s house. As she continues to become more familiar with the world of the Fae and Tamlin, she realizes that all is not well and everyone, both mortal and faery, is in danger.
This book is fantastic! Normally, I am wary of fairy tale spins because many have been written but this is such a fresh take. They don’t make the Belle character more modern by simply making her a warrior. Feyre is a multi-faceted and believable character. She hunts for food in order to ensure survival and her snark and sass come from a hard and isolated life. She is an admirable, realistic, and relatable character. The beast Tamlin is more likable in my opinion than the classic Beast. He is a ruler trying to maintain the precarious balance in his realm. Plus, the idea of him being a faery with a curse rather than a man trapped as an animal was a neat twist.
The writing was great and the plot had many many twists (don’t worry, I won’t spoil anything!) that held my attention the entire time. It was not predictable and contained mature themes that I was not expecting. I was ravenous with this book, reading hundreds of pages at the time, and I felt that Maas did an incredible job building a new world without causing the reader to be confused or bored with all the detail.
Although there is a conclusion with many of the loose ends tied up, the book also leaves many questions unanswered allowing for the series to continue – a series that I am super super pumped to read!
My only critiques was that the romantic scenes sometimes seemed a little forced and overly dramatic. I wish the main couple had developed a bit more naturally and slowly.
All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it for fans of Beauty and the Beast, fantasy fans, and anyone looking for an exciting new series with a strong female protagonist.