Tag Archives: Sarah J Maas

Book Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses, by Sarah J. Maas.

Oh! My! God! This book! I have not read a book this good since… I don’t even know when! Maybe since The Silmarillion! I really want to give it five out of five stars because this is so easily one of my favourite books that I’ve ever read, it is so good that I already want to read it again, and am shaking with excitement about reading the next book in the series. Unfortunately, even though it is so amazingly perfectly awesome, there is one problem with it that prevents me from rating it a full five stars, and that is the enormous, stupid – would be – ending – but I’ll get to that later.
Let the review begin!

This book was a big deal for me. Before reading it I knew that I would either absolutely love it, or want to throw it as far away from me as I could because Beauty and the Beast is one of my all-time favourite stories. Thankfully, Sarah managed to write a masterpiece and made this Beauty and the Beast fan very proud.

I’m not really sure where to start with this. Maybe at the beginning? I was hooked from the very first chapter. Sarah’s writing is captivating to say the very least. She chooses every event, every action, and every word in this book with care and precision. Not one sentence is wasted or used as filler,
Her style, her layout, and, in the case of this book, her poetry, and limericks, all flow so well. Her writing is a wave that just carries you to the next wave, and the one after that, and on and on and on, each word intrinsic, carrying you to wherever it is you are going to end up.

I take a ride up and down the emotional spectrum with A Court of Thorns and Roses. I was filled with both and rage at the start of the book, after the killing of the wolf, mostly because I love wolves, but also because Sarah’s writing is so intense and vivid that it felt kind of real.
As the story progressed I went from happy to sad, sorry to fed-up, jealous to annoyed, scared to excited, turned on to turned off, and round and round until I was emotionally exhausted. Let’s not even talk about how many times I blurted out with laughter, if anyone was there to hear me, they’d think I was crazy.

There isn’t too much to say about the story as it is an adaptation of Beauty and the Beast and so the story isn’t really the book’s story, and I’m pretty sure everyone already knows the tale as old as time.
However, there are a few things to say.
The fantasy element is incorporated very well, and perfectly reflects the fairytale side of it. Of course, there are parts in ACOTAR that don’t come from the Beauty and the Beast story, like the trials and what not, and they seem to go so organically with the story and fit in perfectly. In fact, the new elements that Sarah has added actually kind of expand and further the story.
I also really enjoyed how she added in even the tiniest little details from the fairytale, like the chipped tea cup in her house, the picking of the rose, and the big things, too, of course.
As for the characters, they are kind of similar to Belle and the Beast and Gaston, etc. but they also have a lot of unique traits that make them original and separate them from their counterparts.

I actually forgot to write this part and had to come back and add it in. I just want to talk about how good Sarah’s erotic writing is. Like, it’s SO good! Admittedly, I haven’t read many erotic novels, but any that I have read have nothing on Sarah’s. It’s so hot and so intense and so passionate. She should toooootally write something in the erotica genre… even if it does have faeries in it.

Now. The one thing that lets this book down. The massive, for lack of a better phrase, plot hole.
Normally I wouldn’t write any spoilers in my reviews, but this bugs me too much not to write about. Okay, so, near the end when Tamlin sends away Feyre… WHY WOULD HE DO THAT? IT MAKES NO SENSE!
His logic behind this decision is to keep her safe, correct? Okay, but sending her away actually puts her in more danger, and takes away her only chance for safety. The threat that looms over her is Amarantha, whose goal is to take over Prythian and then destroy the mortal world. Well, the only way to stop Amarantha is by breaking the curse so everyone gets back their power, and the only way to break the curse is for a mortal (Feyre) to fall in love with Tamlin. So, knowing that there are only a couple of days left to break the curse, and knowing that if he doesn’t then Amarantha will take over and soon destroy the mortal world, wouldn’t it make sense to keep Feyre nearby and use every last second to break the curse? By sending her away he sends away the only chance to break the curse, and thus loses his only chance to stop Amarantha, and the humans obviously stand no chance of defeating her and her people once they invade. So, by sending her away, he is basically ensuring her death. FAIL!!!
Sarah! What happened there?!?

Phew! It feels good to have gotten that off my chest. Now!
I don’t think I really need to clarify that I absolutely loved this book. It’s easily in my top 10 books that I’ve ever read.
The recommended audience is pretty obvious, but to be honest, I think everyone should just read this because it is so damn good!




Book Review: Queen of Shadows, by Sarah J. Maas.

Queen of Shadows is the fourth installment in Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series. It carries on the story of Aelin Ashryver Galathynius, once known as Celaena Sardothien, as she utilizes and faces her horrifying past in order to become the queen she was born to be.

After the disappointment of Heir of Fire, I was in no rush to read this book. It had been sitting on my windowsill since December until I decided, this week, to force myself to finish it. And I am glad I did.

The first half of the book seemed rather slow and played out, a lot of what was written seemed rather irrelevant and could have been left out. I would give specific examples if there were not so many to choose from.
The second half of the book, on the other hand, was very fast paced and kept to the storyline and point as much as possible. When I hit that switch in the book, I could not put it down.

As usual, Sarah’s writing is almost impossible to fault, being economical, well structured, and correct in all senses of the word. Her storytelling is another story. As I have said, a lot of what she writes is unnecessary. The stories and characters also seem rather unoriginal, a lot of the time, as I pointed out in my review on Throne of Glass.
On a more positive note, she does have a certain knack for creating strong bonds and emotions between her readers and her books. She did with me, at least. I found myself trapped in an unrelenting cycle of emotion whilst reading this. From excitement, to rage, to disgust, to sadness, to worry, the list goes on. I even cried, which only three books have ever been able to make me do.

Going back again to previous reviews for this series, I would like to make a note that, while most of the characters have stayed the same, the story, and a few characters, have finally shown some form of progression. It only took four books.
As for the characters who have not progressed, they have become increasingly more annoying. Aelin and Rowan’s romance still sickens me, as it completely stole a defining trait from Aelin’s personality and made her as cliché as any other protagonist with a love story.
It was interesting, however, to see Aelin finally have an emotion other than grief. It made reading about her a lot more palatable.

The book is predictable and only managed to surprise me a couple of time within its six hundred and forty-five pages. AND Sarah is still using those godforsaken ‘phantom’ metaphors and similes.
Although, Sarah has put reins on her character switching in this book. There is still plenty of it, however, it is used much more effectively and flows naturally with the storytelling.

Even with the lack of progression and the boring first half, the latter half was very strong and well written, and much more enjoyable. Needless to say, I recommend this to the same readership as the previous books in the series.



Book review: ‘Heir of Fire’ by Sarah J. Maas

Okay, I haven’t done one of these in a while and am a little rusty, so don’t hate on me too much if this is a terrible review.

I read this book quite a while back, which really doesn’t help my struggling to write this review. Truth be told, I can’t actually remember a whole lot of it, but I think that’s more down to me not enjoying it very much, more than me having read it so long ago.

Heir of Fire is the third book in a series of 6, I believe, though not all of them have yet been released, or even written, for that matter.
I have read the first two installations in the Throne of Glass series (Throne of Glass and Heir of FIre), as well as the prequel novellas that have been compiled into The Assassin’s Blade, and, with the exception of the novellas which I didn’t enjoy too much at all, the series seems to be getting progressively worse with each book.

On a whole I enjoy the books and the series, but when the end of the series comes, I  think I’ll be forcing myself to finish that last book.
Anyway, on to the book!

It’s already been made pretty clear that I was not overly fond of this book. It had its good parts and bad parts, as almost all books do, but the bad outweighed the good.
The story and the characters have all become a lot more cliché in this instalment. Celaena, despite revealing her true self and becoming this magically powered Fae queen, has fallen victim to a typical love story with her bad-boy, Fae, soldier boyfriend, and their hate/love relationship.
Alongside becoming cliché, everything has become very predictable, even more so than it already was.
Another thing I disliked about this book, and this goes for the entire series, is that there is a serious lack of progression, for both characters and writing. Everything I’m reading not only feels as though it’s been repeated a hundred times, but the writing itself hasn’t aged, or matured, or grown. And if I have to read a ‘phantom’ simile or metaphor one more time, I may start tippexing the damn book. As for the characters, while they may be becoming more powerful or have new things happening in their lives, they are the same things but simply told differently, or things end up exactly like they were beforehand.
The books have lost all of their shock and awe factor, with everything moving at a turtle’s pace, if that turtle was a baby and that baby turtle was dragging weights through thick mud. This book could have had at least a third cut out.
The last thing I will slate about this book is the constant switching between characters and stories. One minute I’m reading about Celaena, then it’s Chaol, then it’s Dorian, then it’s Dorian through the nurse’s eyes, then it’s Chaol through Dorian’s eyes, then it’s Celaena through her instructor/boyfriend’s eyes – UGH!

Okay, now the good things. Hmm. Good things…
Well, one good thing is Chaol, and if he ever dies or if his character gets ruined, I am going to drop this series like a ton of bricks. I think Chaol is a great character, and one of the few in these books that I actually enjoy. It was refreshing to see him finally having his own story, rather than just being a side to Dorian or Celaena.
The balance of humour, action, romance, and everything else of the sort is still enjoyable. If I’m honest, I think most of the good things about this book are simply things that haven’t been ruined from the previous books. I can’t seem to think of anything that this book brings that is both, good and new.

Given the lack of progression in style, writing, and characters, I recommend this to the same audience that I have the first two instalments.



Book review – ‘The Way of Shadows’ by Brent Weeks

Oh my God! Where do I even begin?

This book is absolutely astounding! I had doubts about it when reading the first chapter, but as soon as that was done with, I didn’t want to put it down. I loved almost every second of it.
If I’m being honest, it’s hard to think of very many faults with this book, if any.
I’ve never read a Brent Week book before, and had never heard of him (and probably never would have) until  my brother in law’s friend recommended this book to me, and leant it to me, too.
It’s an incredible mixture of everything I love about books. The storyline was breathtaking- with so much diversity, and so many surprises, which continue until the very end of the book, it’s hard to not want to read on. In fact, if I had the second book in my possession, I would start reading the moment I finish this post.
All of the characters develop so naturally with the book, and become so much more complex and rich as their back-stories are revealed. Also, with such a wide array of characters on offer (some quite literally), it’s going to be difficult for anyone to not become invested in or emotional towards at least one or two of them. I, personally, absolutely hate Roth, I connect with Elene and Logan, think Momma K is such a real character, and just flat out love Durzo Blint.
The book is exceptionally well balanced – no, not its weight. It manages to maintain non-stop action throughout, without taking anything away from the storyline  or the progression of the book. Not to mention the concoction of other things working alongside the action: romance, comedy (Dorian is hilarious, oh my God!), the development and unravelling of a fantasy world, the tackling of real life problems, and so much more.

The world is one I find particularly capturing. So dark and so corrupt, I was always going to love it. I’d say it’s unlike any world I’ve ever read about or seen before, but that would simply not be true. To be perfectly candid, it seems to me that a couple of popular stories and worlds have spawned from this one, and have, not necessarily ripped it off, but have definitely stolen a few things from it. The first one that comes to mind is the Game of Thrones series. Now, I haven’t actually read the Game of Thrones books, but, if they are anything like the TV show, I feel the world of Westeros definitely owes a few thanks to Mr Weeks. Another world this book seems a little too similar to, to me, is Erilea, the fantasy world created by Sarah J. Maas. In the case of Erilea, it’s more the story of the Throne of Glass series that is similar, not the actual world.
The world of Midcyru, the world of The Night Angel trilogy, is built on such strong foundations, and has so much depth, that it almost seems real – very cliché, I know. Everything about it is so amazing. From the slums to the castles, from the assassins to the wetboys, from the wytches to the vurdmeisters, from the prostitutes to the kings, from bottom to top, the world is full of ingenuity and brilliance.

Not only does Brent Weeks have a talent for world creation, character development, and narrative, he is also a genuinely and generally amazing writer. He’s the type of writer you can’t get bored of. His timing is excellent, his wordplay is brilliant, he is well structured, he isn’t repetitive like a lot of writers, he really connects to the reader and makes the book seem so real, and the list goes on.
I would say that the only problem I have found with his writing is that, while he does make you feel emotion towards the characters and the book, he doesn’t make the emotions strong, like, at all.

I think this book is absolutely amazing, for all the reasons that I have just given, and more. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys dark fantasy, action, the Game of Thrones series, and or the Throne of Glass series. Just, don’t read it if you’re like ten years old or something. Teens and above, guys and girls, teens and above.