SYNOPSIS: Feyre survived Amarantha's clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can't forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin's people.
Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.
SERIES: A Court of Thorns and Roses #2
GENRE: Fantasy, New Adult
RATING: ★★★★★ / All the guilt-ridden stars!
REVIEW: Let's talk about one of my absolute favorite character developments in all of bookdom: The Guilt of the Righteous (did that need caps, probably not, but it felt right so I went with it). I love the deep, soul-destroying anguish! Maybe that's a little twisted, but oh, the feels, so many feels. Not sure what I'm talking about? It's something that I see done most effectively lately in Young Adult Fantasy/Sci-fi/Dystopian, books. It's when our hero or heroine's actions, though justifiable, have left such a stain of guilt upon their inner psyche that it's nearly debilitating. And it can't really be achieved until the second, or later, book.
Now, jumping into A Court of Mist and Fury (ACOMAF for the cool kids) with my first paragraph I think you see where this is going. Feyre is damaged. The guilt is eating her alive (I'm tapping my fingers together in absolute delight from all the delicious emotion...wow I'm turning into an evil reading succubus or something...I make no apologies!!!). This excessive guilt isn't really a spoiler, it's pretty evident from page one, and just the beginning of this book's journey, though like I said, I love that crushing emotion so much that it's probably my favorite aspect of this book, because it's what leads to everything else to follow.
My extended network of book-loving friends did not lie when they said that this book beat out the first. But in saying that, I don't like to look at it as one book being better than the other, because the fact is that the first book was executed so perfectly as to create the base for this book, which wouldn't be possible without book one. I would rather look on it as an amazing series, as a whole, that just gets better and better. In fact, now knowing how perfectly book one led into book two, I wish I could up my star rating of the first book from 4 to 5 stars (but that would be cheating and entirely wrong from a proper reviewer, so of course I'll let well enough alone).
I'm trying to keep this spoiler free, and as with most of my reviews, it's just me rambling all the thoughts in my head, but here's what I can tell you. All the characters grow in this book, for better or worse. We meet some fantastic new characters and learn a ton of new history. The overall story arc has begun to form a much clearer picture and by the end we mostly know what the characters will be up against in future books. AND, I was satisfied with the ending. It left much to be done, but it also left us with just the right amount of hope and a bit of a secret smile.
Sarah J. Maas has done it again! Sucking us in from page one with her outstanding characters and artfully crafted world. I'm ready for book three please!