[ Edit (12/2020): This review was first posted years ago, and my thoughts on this series have changed since then. I want to reread it before rewriting this review, but in the meantime I want to point out that this series includes harmful representation and lacks diversity in it’s cast of characters. While I still enjoy the books, these issues cannot be ignored. Hopefully I’ll be updating this review soon, but until then, I’ll be adding this disclaimer to all of my ACOTAR reviews and adjusting my rating.]
This series. I remember reading ACOTAR for the first time back in 2015 and falling in love with the world and the characters. I still adore it now, 3 years later.
Overall: 4/5 Stars
Plot and Themes: 3.5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 2/5
Review in a Nutshell: A Court of Thorns and Roses is a breathtaking fantasy that will immerse you in a beautiful yet cruel world, with characters sure to stick with you and quotes that will stay in your mind for years.
“Pity those who don’t feel anything at all.”
A Court of Thorns and Roses is a beautiful retelling of Beauty and the Beast, with its own world and lore that will suck you in immediately. It follows Feyre, who is forced to live with Tamlin, a powerful fae, in the dangerous known as Prythian as a punishment for her crime of killing a fae sentry. She is unaware of the true dangers that lurk, including a mysterious blight that is wreaking havoc in Prythian. This series is full of action and mystery, as well as great characters and swoon-worthy romance.
A Court of Thorns and Roses really sets the stage for the rest of the series to take off. The first two-thirds of the book focuses a lot on building the world and characters. It is a little slower than the final act (and next two books), but there is still enough suspense and mystery to keep the pages turning fast. The last third of the book is fast-paced and full of back-to-back action. The characters in this series set it apart from any other. Each character has a complex background that you only just begin to grasp during this first book. All of them stand out on their own. However, there is a lack of diversity in this book. I will say that Sarah J. Maas does try to correct it in later books, and how well she does at that it up to you to decide. I really enjoyed the dynamics between the characters and the relationships in this book. They aren’t perfect or ideal, and that’s exactly why I like them. Maas does an excellent job in creating imperfect relationships that allow her to discuss deeper themes in later books.
Overall, this series is one of my favorites. When you’re reading this book, you are engulfed in the world and the magic. Sarah J. Maas has created unforgettable characters in a fascinating universe that you will be dying to jump back into the second you leave.
“Don’t feel bad for one moment about doing what brings you joy.”