Impending war threatens all that Feyre holds dear in this third installment of Sarah J. Maas’s famous series.
Feyre has left her beloved Night Court and stays with Tamlin at the Spring Court, trying to uncover his plans and those of the King of Hybern in the impending war. One tiny slip in her carefully crafted web of lies would cast doom on her and those she loves. But deciding who to trust is harder than ever – while allies can be found in the most unexpected places… Will Feyre and her friends make it in time to gather enough people to win the war against Hybern, or will they all go down in battle..?
“I would have waited five hundred more years for you. A thousand years. And if this was all the time we were allowed to have… The wait was worth it.” (p. 612)
I’m starting with this quote and immediately have all the heartache back in my chest, the same tears in my eyes that slid down my face when I turned the last page of A Court of Wings and Ruin a few days ago. This book is many things, but most of all it is intense! (If you haven’t yet read A Court of Thorns and Roses and A Court of Mist and Fury, please don’t read ahead – contains spoilers!)
I honestly don’t know if I’ll be able to do this book – the whole series actually – justice with my words. It was so, so incredibly good, I’m still trying to recover from the emotional overload it has thrown my way. This book has made me feel all over the place – I couldn’t trust my own judgment anymore – those characters I promised to hate from book one until forever started to suddenly grow on me, even the monsters that I was scared of didn’t feel as threatening anymore, but rather more like new friends that you don’t yet know very well, but are very fond of.
I want to apologize in advance if this review is not entirely coherent, but I honestly have the worst book hangover I’ve had in years – years!!! I honestly didn’t think I could love a book series as much as I love this one and I am so, so sad that I’ve reached the end of A Court of Wings and Ruin – something I’ve been dreading and putting off for days and days on end. I know I still have A Court of Frost and Starlight to read and that there will probably be more books in the series, but it still feels like a good-bye somehow. I’ve just turned the last pages of the book and already feel like I need to reread the entire series again – I will miss Feyre’s and Rhysand’s love story so much, their banter, their cute and romantic moments, their friends.
One thing I loved especially was that every single side character played such an important role for the development of the book, and all were definitely necessary for the conclusion. For example, I always wondered why we even needed Elain and Nesta (oh Nesta, who had my blood boiling with rage most of the time) – was it just to make the three Illyrian warriors happy? But no, don’t worry, there’s more to them than that! In the end, Nesta didn’t even feel as horrible as in the beginning – I almost, almost, started to like her (just a little).
I loved Mor and that she gave us a proper insight into what exactly is the deal between her and Azriel (didn’t we all wonder for so long?), and we are not only happy she told us (well, she told Feyre, to be exact, but you get me) but also so very happy that her tale brings more diversity into the story. Well done, Sarah J. Maas! I also love Amren very much – the tiny monster who frightens everybody is crucial to this story on so many levels (can’t say more, because spoilers.) But please, those of you who finished the book already – can you tell me in the comments below if you, too, were a little bit sad about what went down with Amren in the very end?
I was really scared at the beginning of the book that I would continue to dislike Lucien (whom I loved as Feyre’s loyal friend before), and even though we don’t really get a proper happy ending in that department (as Lucien will be absent during most of the book), I do have the feeling that there will be more of him to come in the future.
I also loved to see all those famous High Lords come together in this book. They are all so different and diverse, all of them have specific characteristics, friends, background stories and powers, and even though I am the worst with remembering names, I could even distinguish them (at least for the duration of the book, lol)!
So even though I was a tiny bit sad that we didn’t get as many Feyre and Rhysand exclusive scenes as I had wished (we do get them, but it felt a bit scarce as compared to ACOMAF) – I also totally get it. This third book has so much plot – there are so many new characters and old ones that you need to constantly make mental notes for yourself so that you can follow along (I had to, anyway) – there were so many background stories to tell and loose ends to tie that their one on one time had to fall a little short. What I have to stress about their love story though is definitely the feminist aspect of it. I love, love, LOVE the fact that Rhysand always gives Feyre the choice to decide whatever she wants to do (nothing like another High Lord in the series *cough Tamlin cough*), and it is stressed multiple times that she is not only his love, wife and mate, but also his equal. I also loved to see Feyre in action – she is so much more of a leader figure here than compared to book one (although she always was independent, it was nothing compared to how kick-ass she is in this one), perfectly filling out the throne of the High Lady of the Night Court, if you ask me!
As I said, it took me quite a while to get through this book – it had so much new information, an awesome plot, amazing characters, and so much more – that I just couldn’t (and didn’t want to) get through it faster. Even though my emotions were high throughout it all, it was towards the end that I seriously had tears streaming down my face. The moments before the war, when all of our beloved characters have their final moment together and Rhysand, as their leader, holds a speech to show his gratitude towards them, it was all too much for me. How can you get attached to book characters this much? Well, you definitely can, that much I can tell you. And then the battle itself… it is so hard to go through it, you want to know what happens, but also you don’t. And then something happens that almost had me vomiting (TMI – I know, but now you know how very emotional it all is) – tears alone just couldn’t contain my feelings any longer – you will know what I speak of when you get there.
Has this review been able to portray my feelings towards this book in the slightest? I don’t know. But just trust me when I say it is amazing. More than that – it is epic! The characters are all so well developed, every question I had in my mind while reading it was answered (apart from the one what Cassian saw when he went to see the Bone Carver???), which does not always happen with books, especially not in the fantasy genre! The scenes are so well explained, I could definitely picture myself in the book with the others, I could feel what Feyre feels, see what she sees, and go on all the amazing adventures with her.
It’s been years since I felt like this after reading a book, and I love this feeling so, so much, even though it is emotionally very draining lol. Many people say that out of this series, ACOMAF is their favorite, and I can totally understand why – the Feysand love is just the most incredible thing on earth and we all need a Rhysand as our partner, so if you want to reread their best moments together definitely go for this one. But I feel like ACOWAR is just as amazing – if only on another level. I think we can all agree that it definitely comes as a close second. And all when I thought the series couldn’t get any better when I read ACOTAR *shakes head, disbelieving*
To conclude, and to stop myself for rambling some more, here comes my second favorite quote of the book, which totally shows how amazing the friendship-love in the book is (I LOVE IT SO MUCH – if all the words above didn’t tell you yet):
“The great joy and honor of my life has been to know you. To call you my family. And I am grateful – more than I can possibly say – that I was given this time with you all.” (p. 613)
So tell me in the comments below – did you enjoy ACOWAR as much as I did? Have you been crying a little (or a lot) during the crucial scenes in the end, and most important of all, who is your favorite character?