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Thursday, June 2, 2016

Lefty's Lowdown: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
(A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)
Published: May 5, 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
Source: Purchased
Summary from Goodreads: 
When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it... or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!
 So I'm the last person on the planet to read this novel, I know. I'm glad I finally read it, though, because it's pretty damn good. Not earth-shaking or anything, like it seems to be for some people, but pretty damn good.

The very first thing that sucked me into this novel was the writing. I know that seems like such a given, but from the very first page, it is obvious that Sarah J. Maas is a skilled wordsmith. Her writing is beautiful, and Feyre's voice is strong and engaging. Feyre in general is a strong and engaging character. She's selfless and prickly and I loved reading about her. I hated the way her family treated her, especially considering how much she did for them without ever receiving a thank you. I also really like how real she was. She struggles with insecurities and uncertainties and she struggles for strength at some points. Even in a world of fae, she is a relatable character.

While Tamlin eventually grew on me (A LOT), I was immediately charmed by Lucien. He is funny and rude and he's definitely the guy I would want to be best friends with. About halfway through the book, I came around to Tamlin, and by the end I loved him and I loved the relationship he and Feyre have. I know a lot of people weren't sold on him (and tons of people prefer Rhy, which I don't understand even a little bit), but I believe Tamlin really cares for Feyre. He's not very good at loving people, but it was clear how much he cared for him in the little things he did. All in all, though, I think Maas introduces a cast of characters that have depth and interesting backstories.

My biggest problem with this novel lies in the pacing. I almost DNFed this book because the first half drug really badly. Interesting things were happening and yet....I was buddy reading this with someone and she actually did DNF it, I believe. She said it was making her feel slumpy, and that's kinda where I was at, too. But I pushed through and the second half of the novel redeemed itself big time. The second half was addicting and exciting! I couldn't wait to see what would happen to Feyre and how she would escape her various predicaments.

This book has a lot of really fantastic things going for it: stunning writing, intriguing characters, and a steamy romance. I enjoyed the ending a lot, and was interested in the worldbuilding. This book would have been a total hit-it-out-of-the-park, 5-star read for me if the beginning had been more exciting, but it took me 8 or 9 days to slog through the first half, and I don't believe that can be overlooked. I was extremely satisfied by the ending, and, as of right now, I have no intentions of reading the sequel, because I kinda just want to leave Feyre's story where it is at the end of this novel.

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