A Court of Mist and Fury

One of the best books I’ve read this year is without a doubt Sarah J. Maas A Court of Thorns and Roses. I read it this past spring and had a bad book-hangover for a while. The thought that the sequel, A Court of Mist and Fury, was two whole months away seemed like eternity and while I finally got my hands on it… well, I decided that I wasn’t going to rush through it and I certainly haven’t done that.

We’re back in Prythian with Feyre, now known as Feyre Cursebreaker. Three months ago, she finished off Amarantha Under the Mountain and she saved Tamlin and the rest of the land. Now she’s back at the Spring Court with Tamlin and Lucien, set to marry her love and finally get her happily ever after. But things aren’t great, despite the fact that they’re now all, finally, free. Feyre battles with everything she did and saw Under the Mountain and it’s hurting her. It’s hurting even more that Tamlin doesn’t allow her to feel it all, that he instead encourages her to push it all to the side. He wants her to sit by him and be silent, be still, to be the hope his people needs. But Feyre is dying inside more and more for every moment that Tamlin pushes her to be something she’s not. The only time she can breathe, truly breathe, is when Rhysand calls upon the bargain they made Under the Mountain and Feyre is brought to the Night Court.

On the day of Feyre’s wedding to Tamlin she panics and Rhysand is the one who saves her. He takes her to the Night Court permanently and there Feyre settles in his townhouse, alongside his four close friends. Slowly Feyre begins to heal and she starts to question her relationship with Tamlin, especially when Rhys confirms something Tamlin has denied so vehemently. War is not only brewing, but it’s coming to Prythian again. Feyre, made into an immortal by all seven High Lords, have powers she can no longer suppress. Rhys offer her the possibility to not only learn how to use them, but to be useful in preparing for the coming war as well. And while she’s at the Night Court, Feyre does not only see a different side to Rhys but a different side to the Night Court as well. She was led to believe that they were awful people and that Rhys was worst of all, but she doesn’t agree. They’re the people that saves her when she thought herself beyond saving and they’re the people she will fight for. Fight, side by side, when the war reaches Prythian yet again.

As the title of the novel suggest, this is darker story than A Court of Thorns and Roses. While the first book was horrifying at times, especially later in when Feyre is Under the Mountain, she really has to work through it all here, in A Court of Mist and Fury. Everything she experienced is something she has to deal with now, but a big part of the novel is also dedicated to Feyre coming to terms with her immortality, her new body and strength and the gifts she’s received from the seven High Lords. They all have their own specific power and now Feyre is harnessing all of them inside her. Accepting this is not easy and Tamlin makes it so hard for Feyre when they’re back at the Spring Court, mainly because he’s afraid of losing her. But the more he tries to protect her and keep her out of harm’s way, the more Feyre hurts. Leaving him isn’t easy and it takes a long time for her to work through everything she feels for him as well, but Rhysand and the Night Court offers a respite from everything and, more than anything, a chance for Feyre to finally be herself.

I loved the first installment of this series and I could so easily sit here for hours and heap praise on the sequel. Maas has written a story I’ve been longing to read for years and it is more perfect than I could ever imagined. At one part in the novel, Feyre tells Rhys that she has unknowingly been looking for him and his closest friends – now her friends as well – for years and I feel like I’ve been looking for this story just as long. It is so rich and imaginative yet so believable. It will swallow you up in a heartbeat and not let you go, even after you put it down. It gives you action, romance, sorrow and pain, friendship and love, light and darkness, beauty and horrors. Basically everything you could ever want from a book.

One of my favorite things is without a doubt the characters. They’re so deep and so true. I connected instantly with Feyre in the first book and I was very curious about Rhysand then as well. I didn’t believe him to be the monster everyone said he was and I was right. A Court of Mist and Fury allows the reader to get close to him and see that behind his hard exterior is a character with a very rich personality. He has four close friends; Amren, his cousin Mor, Cassian and Azriel. They all accept Feyre and they have very interesting stories as well. I loved getting to know them and I love how much Maas obviously has worked on all of her character’s pasts and their personalities. It must’ve been hard work but it is so worth it because they’re some of the most believable characters I’ve ever come across.

But Feyre is of course the big achievement. She’s so broken in this novel and I loved it. A Court of Mist and Fury was a nice 600+ pages and Feyre is hurting for the most part. Maybe you think that’s boring, but I didn’t. I thought it was true and real. Feyre has been through hell and back and then back again. She did horrible things Under the Mountain and had horrible things done to her. She was killed and remade into a High Fae. She was reunited with her love and then pushed away by him. She hurts for months and I love it because that’s the only thing that would be logical, in my opinion. If you would go through something like that yourself, you wouldn’t be fine after a few weeks or a month. You might not be fine, ever. Maas does not rush Feyre’s recovery and I applaud that. So many authors do, because they want to move the story forward. But this is part of the story, such an important part, and I really think it can speak to readers who feel bad themselves, for whatever reason. That it’s okay to take however much time you need to be okay. You don’t have to get over everything in a few weeks. Getting back on your feet takes time and that’s okay. This is one of the most important parts in the book, in my opinion, and I love that the novel isn’t just about Feyre’s split from Tamlin or her possible romance with Rhys. It’s about her health and wellbeing and I really liked that Maas put so much focus on that.

Another thing I loved was the relationship between Feyre and Mor. They’re two strong women who can sit down and talk about things besides men and love. I think they’re great role models and they really show that women can be strong and independent. They’re likable and charming but also ruthless and I enjoyed seeing how Maas allowed them to flourish. Amren was a very strong and hardcore character as well, somewhat different but with a very interesting backstory that I look forward to hearing more about later! The dynamic between Mor, Cassian and Azriel was exciting too and I can't wait to see what's going to happen there in the future!

I could go on and on but I think this is a series that you should explore yourselves. I really think there’s something for everyone in here and I do believe it will take your breath away. I’m going to be honest here and say that I actually bought this novel the same month it was published, had it beside my bed for two months and have been reading it since then – five months in total. I had to slow down because I was afraid it would end too soon and I wouldn’t be ready and after a while I was scared to continue because I still wanted to have it all in front of me. I eventually had to finish it and it was just as amazing as I thought it would be, if not more, actually. The sequel will be out in May, which feels like forever. However, the fact that this was supposed to be a trilogy but is now going to be a series of six novels makes me so very, very happy. So, put both of these novels on your wish list for Christmas, read them with love and you’ll be ready right about the time the third one comes out next year. I think you will really like this story because it certainly is something out of the ordinary!