Okay, let me start off by saying I have a lot of feelings about this book, which is awesome, because if I book can dig down in me and make me feel all sorts of things, then I am here for it!
A Court of Mist and Fury builds off of A Court of Thorns and Roses but makes the world 10 times better. Plot? There’s lot of plot. Characterization? Tons of it. Tragic backstories and permeating feelings of guilt? There’s a lot of that, too. I love character driven stories, and this book dove deep into the characters of Feyre and Rhysand.
It’s hard to talk about this book without spoiling anything, but I’ll write my non-spoiler review first.
First of all, it’s important to address the fact that this book is a monster, as it weighs in at 626 pages. When I first got it from the library, I thought, “What can she possibly go on about for that many pages?”
I will admit, it took me a good 50 pages to get into it. The sex scene towards the beginning was cringey. The beginning was a little slow, but necessarily so, as Feyre dealt with the trauma from the end of the first book. But it quickly becomes interesting once Feyre enters the Night Court. I loved meeting a whole new cast of characters. Sometimes secondary characters feel too bare for me as a reader, but Rhysand’s crew felt very fleshed out.
Maas did a much better job of explaining the magic system, and I enjoyed learning about the world’s complicated history. I loved the whole atmosphere of the Night Court.
I enjoyed Feyre’s character development, and I really enjoyed learning about Rhysand. He’s such a complex character, and I loved learning about his motivations and his backstory. I’m also a sucker for the tall, dark, and handsome type.
Without spoiling anything, let me just say that this is the best relationship/romance I’ve read in a while. I wasn’t all for it in the first book; it was okay, but it was lacking a real depth. But Maas didn’t hold anything back in the sequel.
That being said, there were some small things in this book that I take issue with. While I enjoy Maas’ writing style overall, sometimes she throws out a line that makes me cringe. She writes “snarled” way too many times, and things like “said baldly.” She writes “he purred” more often than I ever want to read; I’m a firm believer in “said” is best. I know the characters are supposed to have a predatory side, but ugh. It was a little too cringey for me.
This book also negated the first book in a lot of ways, which I’ll go into in the spoiler-filled section of my review below.
If you’re debating reading the series, get through the first book so that you can get to this one! I loved the worldbuilding and I especially loved the character growth. I don’t give 5 stars lightly, but I was wholly engrossed in reading this. I stayed up past my bedtime reading this (whoops) and finished it the next day.
I’m excited to read the next one.
VERDICT: 5 stars
SPOILERY REVIEW BELOW:
Feyre + Rhysand—OH THANK GOD. Tamlin had no personality, and I was interested to see how Maas would further their relationship. But she hit it out of the park with Rhysand. He just oozes personality, and he and Feyre actually have chemistry! Yay! I’m very picky when it comes to relationships in books; often it feels too rushed or too out of nowhere. But Maas took the idea of a slow burn and stretched it, so that Feyre and Rhysand actually knew each other inside out and trusted each other with their lives.
I’m also down for anything with flying, and I loved how Maas described Rhysand and the other characters’ wings.
Like I said above, this book did negate some aspects of the first one. After everything Feyre went through to save Tamlin in the first book, she jumps awfully fast to Rhysand. I’m not complaining about it, because it honestly felt true to character, but it was a bit jarring at first. I know some other readers had issues with Tamlin’s actions in the beginning of A Court of Mist and Fury, and felt betrayed by his character and actions. But I wasn’t too fond of him as a character to begin with so…I didn’t mind!
And while Lucien was my favorite character in the first book, he acts like a shell of his former self in this one. But considering how his story arc ended, I’m sure I’ll see much more of him in the 3rd book!