Here is your spoiler alert.
If you haven’t read it, go read it and then come back.
I’m not ruining it for you, so go buy it, and then come back, and lets talk! I like to look at books critically- mechanics and plot elements- with open discussion. Feel free to leave a comment and tell me if you agree with me or not, but tell me why! Also, this article is going to talk about plot elements that are, for sure, for a mature audience. If you do not feel you can approach ‘literotica’ and sexy time in books:
Turn around now.
But thank you for visiting 🙂
I should have given A Court Of Thorns And Roses (Book #1) a “6” and A Court Of Mist And Fury a “7” because it IS better than the previous, but only marginally.
I liked it. I do crave a conclusion to the “story”, and “ship” the love, and so I will read the next book in the series due out 02 May 2017. …But I’m increasingly disillusioned by the over all series.
Starting with the bad this time:
The book is too long. This was my main complaint with ACOTAR (Book #1), as well. The issue was the simplistic word building (distinct from the “world” building)- the repetition of phrases and words to drive in a point. The idea that if you say it so many times, it becomes real. In the ACOTAR review I laid out an example of what I mean by this, and for time, I’ll omit repeating it on this review. However, a clearer example from ACOMAF (Book #2) is that the word “snarl” is used in various forms OVER 50 TIMES. I picture a lot of drool dripping cartoonishly from pointed lips on cocked heads with dumbfounded eyes.
Because of ACOMAF‘s repetitiveness, I keep thinking how closely, mechanically, the story resembles my November NaNoWriMo drafts. Every November 1st, I open a blank file and start writing about something without previous brainstorming. Every November 2nd, I throw the idea of rereading what I started out the window and just continue, no looking back, maybe adding a depth in sequential writings that I may have missed on the first. Only after I write “THE END” do I go back and edit, clean up the sloppy mess. Merry Christmas!
Considering that the books of this series get released 6 months after November, I wouldn’t be surprised if this was her writing formulae as well.
Regarding the sex in the novel: I knew that it was going to be there. It comes down to my choice to read it or not – and I wanted to read it, so I did. I still wish to reiterate that ACOTAR and ACOMAF are books meant for those that happen to be teens but are mentally old enough to surpass YA and wander into other literary sections. Bloomsbury’s bold twist to market this as “teen” is a compelling evidence to tie advertisement manipulation and “over sexualizing” youth together, but, that isn’t a depth I wanted to take this review to.
To follow up with my previous critique, Mrs. Maas did not actually use the phrase “It felt like an eternity“, or at least not that I remembered and marked. Now, I don’t feel like I have to DNF because I said I would if she did. So…..
To the reasons I do like the book.
The more of the series I read, I am thankful for the first person narrative. If it was narrated any other way, I just don’t see how it would work. I can’t imagine trying to explain “winnowing” other than a *pop*. And the fact that it’s prettily described helps capture our imaginations.
There are some very lovely descriptions. On page 112, “-a shaft of buttery afternoon sunlight warming my feet,” paints a picture of liquid warmth. And on page 59, “merry but alert”, is direct and poignant. I enjoyed trying to pinpoint these easter eggs.
As far as the plot is concerned, I’m ok with the back and forth, the friendship and relationship building that is captured for the bulk of the book. You never “see” one place ‘all the time’ before you are whisked away to something, somewhere, else. There is always forward movement. Honestly, if I wanted something that was more intricate… I’d read Game Of Thrones. Which I have yet to do, and no plans to do so. I am interested enough in the story that I really want to read the third installment.
My only gripe is from the saga of Jurian. Like, I don’t remember anything that was told to us about him from ACOTAR. Since I checked these books out of the library, I can’t exactly go back and read again the history and why he’s so bad. So, have your other book out and ready to look at when you get into that part of the story.
Fangirl moments: What does the third cover mean!? Can we talk about Ianthe? That WENCH! OMG! I want to know more about the tattoos! WHAT, HIGH LADY! WHA WHA WHA WHA WHAAAATTTT?! Don’t leave me hanging!