Summary: This book is the sequel to A Court of Thorns and Roses. For my review of ACOTAR, go ahead and click here. Everything from this point on contains spoilers for that book.
It has been months since Feyre freed herself, Tamlin, and everyone in Prythian from the curse set by the evil Amarantha. Everyone is trying to return to normal. Feyre and Tamlin are preparing to marry.
Except it's not that easy - Feyre is still haunted by the events of Under the Mountain, from the lives she had to take, to the fact that her own human life had been taken. She wakes up from her nightmares, vomiting. She can no longer bring herself to paint. She feels herself being suffocated by the pressures and duties that come with her position as the soon-to-be Lady of the Spring Court. And there's also the bargain that she made with Rhysand while she was Under the Mountain, and the fact strange things have been happening ever since she was brought back to life by all the High Lords of Prythian.
Feyre is quickly losing her sense of self, unable to know whom to trust anymore. And as she finds herself with new, unlikely allies, she also learns that a greater threat is looming, and that if she is to survive her new life as an immortal, she's going to have to choose to fight.
Thoughts: Picture me writhing on the floor, my hands clutching at my hair because I TOTALLY DO NOT KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH MYSELF RIGHT NOW. I SERIOUSLY CANNOT BEGIN TO EVEN.
*picks self off floor*
Okay, so... it was pretty amazing.
I'm going to be honest and say that while I REALLY liked ACOTAR, I of course feel that TOG is the better Maas series. Well, okay - that's not a fair comparison. If we're comparing JUST the first book of each, I feel that TOG is the more impressive first volume. I really liked ACOTAR, but TOG (and all its sequels) are pretty mindblowing. And I was excited for this book, but I think I was even MORE excited for Queen of Shadows, and I feel like I'm killing time until Empire of Storms comes out.
Well, guess what? With ACOMAF, this series TOTALLY just stepped up its game. And if this is only the second book, I feel like by the time we get to the conclusion of this series (whenever that might be), you might have to scrape me off the floor with a silicone spatula, because I'm going to have exploded into a bloody mess of FEELS.
Seriously, Sarah. Between these two series, you are KILLING me. KILLING ME DEAD.
First of all, and this is a warning from Queen SJM herself, "there is like, 400% more sexy times in this book." She wasn't kidding. I'm not even sure how this still qualifies as a YAF, to be honest. It's not that there is a lot of sex, but the descriptions are more, uh, detailed and frank than what I would expect from a YAF novel. It was more on par with what I read in adult romance novels.
I'm not pointing this out as a strength of the book, but as the first thing that made me go "OMG. WHAT IS HAPPENING?"
Secondly, Tamlin. This isn't much of a spoiler, considering my summary above, but I was basically a Tamlin fan after reading the first book, and now... yeah, NOPE. And I was actually shocked. I was shocked by how uncomfortable their relationship made me in the first part of the book, shocked at just how MUCH I was hoping for Feyre to get out of there. There are guys in real life who are actually like that, and the realness of it, the panic that she was feeling, struck a chord with me. It surprised me just how MUCH I found myself NOT shipping them.
Thirdly, without being spoilery, there are some baddies in this book that made my skin crawl. SJM also has said that the Weaver is a particularly disturbing character, and yes, I have to agree. The Bone Carver was especially eerie too
Fourthly, also without being spoilery, the members of Rhysand's Inner Circle are awwwwwwwesome. I love them. ALL of them. I love these new characters.
Fifthly, Feyre's sisters are in this book, and... just, yeah. I can't say anything more.
Last but not least, Feyre herself. MAN. The amount of growth she experiences in this book, the amazing sweep of her character arc... she is amazing, and in a totally different way from Celaena Sardothien.
Okay, there is ANOTHER aspect of the book that had me pounding my fists on the table, but I absolutely can't say anything about it without giving things away. BUT IT'S GOOOOOOD.
And the note on which it ends is SO... I don't even know how to describe it. I remember it BREAKING MY HEART and then I checked how pages are left and wondering how things would be resolved and... let's just say that we need to remember that SJM wrote all those plot twists in Queen of Shadows, and thus, I shouldn't have been so surprised at this one :)
I apologize if this post is one big incoherent mess, but the FEELS are still fresh. Basically, READ IT. READ THIS BOOK NOW. Except that once you finish it, you've got to wait until May 2017 for the next book.