By Sarah J. Maas
My Rating: 5 Million Fabulous Stars
Date Read: Forever Ago 2017
Publication Date: May 2nd, 2017
Hardback, 699 Pages
Summary From Goodreads
A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.
Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.
ALSO, IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THE BOOK YET BUT YOU ARE PLANNING ON IT STOP READING RIGHT NOW. THERE WILL BE LOTS OF SPOILERS. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED. CONTINUE READING AT YOUR OWN RISK.
Oh my gosh. oh my gosh. OHMYGOSH ohmygosh OH MY HOLY FREAKING GAAAAAAAAAH! *BOOM* What was that? Oh, just my brain exploding, no big deal. I love this book (and the series as a whole, actually) so much. Like, if it were possible to give more than 5 stars, I would. I would give it #AllTheStars if I could. I've been so excited for this book to come out for a long time because I needed to know what happened, and um, Rhysand. Yeah, I needed more of him. The closer it got to the release date, the more frantic I became. I talked about it NON STOP, and to be honest, I probably annoyed the frak out of my family because of it. I went out and bought it the morning it came out ( I got up super early and made a pit stop at the store--two stores actually, because the first one didn't have it out yet, the jerks!--before work, because I was that dedicated to the cause and I wanted, no, NEEDED to have it in my hands, even if I couldn't read it right away.) I will admit, even though I was annoyingly and ecstatically happy, there was an itty bitty part of me that was worried about it. Because, as all of my bookish friends pointed out, we've never seen the end of a Sarah J Maas book before. We didn't know how she liked to end things. Add to that the fact that there were rumors going around that at the end of the book it switched over to Rhysand's Point Of View, which had me (And every other person in the ACOTAR fandom) in a panic, because we were remembering one of the last times an author did that to us, and it was NOT a good thing *cough* Veronica Roth I'm looking at you *cough* But I worried for nothing. (Well actually it wasn't for nothing... SARAH J MAAS ripped out my heart and stomped on it, not once, but TWICE, and I almost died. It physically hurt me, and I almost, ALMOST threw the book against the wall and refused to finish it.) I kept reading though, I powered through my heartbreak, and I finished this book late Friday/early Saturday, depending on how you look at it, and I've started writing a review, so many times since then, but I feel like I'm not really doing it justice, so I will erase what I have and then start over. My head is still spinning from everything.
Feyre has grown up SO much from the first book. She went from a headstrong human girl, to a broken/broken hearted fey, who was slowly going crazy, to finally accepting what she was and what she did, and just what that means for her. And now? Now she is FIERCE. A force to be reckoned with. In ACOMAF, thanks largely to Rhysand and the Inner Circle, we get to see her slowly healing and figuring out what her strengths are. She's finding herself a new family in the most unexpected place. And in the third book, I just, I don't even know how to describe it. She knows what she wants, and will do anything in her power to get it. She will do whatever it takes to keep her family safe, and she's so cunning it blew my mind. I know that some people were mildly worried about her at the end of the second book because she was with Tamlin again, but that worry was misplaced. Our girl Feyre's got this handled. She's not a damsel in distress (never was actually, despite what Tamlin The Tool might have thought) she's got things handled. She is stronger and smarter than she was when she was with Tamlin, she's been trained by the best of the best. She went with Tamlin because she had a plan to get back at him, and make him pay for betraying them all to Hybern. She was very clever, and conniving, and every single thing she did, thought, said, etc, was done so for a reason. It was so amazing, I loved it.
RHYSAND. Holy Guacamole. He is probably my favorite book boyfriend in the history of ever. (and I've read a lot of books) He never yells at Feyre or belittles her or makes her feel stupid, even when she does the dumbest sh** ever. He doesn't explode in anger when Feyre disagrees with him, or tells him what he's doing is wrong or calls him out on something(like Tamlin) or tells him he's being stupid. They always talk things through, and come to an agreement. Or they agree to disagree. He won't let her apologize for making decisions on her own, and will absolutely not let her apologize for her thoughts, opinions, etc. She got so used to apologizing when she was in the Spring Court, and trying to smooth things over to keep Tamlin happy. Rhys made sure that Feyre knew that it was okay to have her own opinions, and that she SHOULD tell him what she's thinking. He wants her to call him out when she thinks he's full of BS, and that he loves her for her sassiness. He also made sure that she knew that he saw the two of them as equals in anything and everything. Not only are they mates, but he made her the High Lady of the Night Court, something that hasn't been done before. (Leave it to Rhys Darling to thumb his nose at traditions. That's my boy!!) Sure he might not like the idea of Feyre putting herself in danger, but he sure isn't going to stop her from doing it. If anything, he's going to make sure that he's right there beside her, to watch her back. He told her that she should never have to apologize to him for speaking her mind. He's also super hilarious, which is a plus. He respects Feyre when she tells him no. Like when the High Lords were together in the same house and she didn't want to have sex with Rhysand because she felt super awkward with Tamlin being under the same roof. Rhys said okay, and that was that. No trying to get her to change her mind. No making her feel guilty. He accepted it and they moved on. I also absolutely adore Rhysand's ability to Keep Calm And Carry On. Even if he's mentally freaking out on the inside, he doesn't let it show. That's a great talent to have, and it keeps people guessing. Sometimes people tend to underestimate Rhys and his power, and when he chooses to unleash it... Oh my. Case in point, when the High Lords were having their meeting and Tamlin just kept running his big fat mouth and saying awful things about Feyre. Rhysand literally took away Tamlin's ability to speak. I can't tell you how hard I was cheering when he did that. It made my heart happy. He didn't resort to violence, but he did manage to remind everyone that he is a force to be reckoned with.
Azriel is another one of my favorites. Okay, honesty time here. I love everyone in Rhysand's Inner Circle, soooo... Yeah. But Azriel is my soulmate (because Rhys is obviously very taken.) He's the tall dark and handsome type. He's quiet, and when he's in an uncomfortable situation he LITERALY tries to melt into the shadows (I almost died when I read that) He's so endearing. And some of the stuff that does come out of his mouth is hilarious. He's got a sassy side.
Ready for another honest moment that some people (like my best friend, who I made read the books) will totally and completely disagree with me about? I want Azriel and Elain to end up together. Now now, I know Elain and Lucien are mates. I KNOW that. But Az and Elain are just too cute and I can't handle it. They're like day and night, they're both quiet, and and and they're just amazing. I want Lucien to be happy of course, but he can be happy with someone else. That Firebird Princess he went to find, perhaps? I don't know. I mean, I'll be okay if Lucien and Elain remain a thing, but I will forever be a shipper of Elriel.
And now here's where I talk about my favorite Smol Bean.... TARQUIN! He's like, my super favorite character. Like, if I had to give you my top 10 favorite characters from the series, he'd be number 2, right under Rhysand, and above Azriel at number 3. He's just so sweet, and really wants to change things. He was still pretty unhappy with Rhys and the rest of the Night Court (which is super understandable considering what happened.) And he was pretty suspicious of their intentions when they approached him about... stuff. But he managed to move past all that (because he really did want to be their friends) and he ended up being one of their biggest supporters when it was important. And he was the first one to step up and offer a piece of himself when it came time for the Rhysurection. He wants things to be better, and he wants good relationships with not only the people in his court, but other courts as well. And it just did my heart good to see things work out for the better. Now I just want him to be one of the main characters in the next arc of the series. I would love to see him get his very own Happily Ever After. And I fully believe that he'd follow Rhysand's lead and make his mate High Lady of the Winter Court.
Now we're going to talk about my boy Tamlin the Tool. He was such a jerk in this book. Really, he was. I get that he was upset with Feyre and Rhys, and he wasn't really understanding what was going on. But I was upset with him. How could he not see just how horrible he'd been? That treating Feyre the way that he did was just absolutely awful and was hurting her more than protecting her. He did the things that he did because he was being selfish, and he lashed out at Feyre and the others incessantly, and it was kind of getting on my nerves. I wanted to shake him and tell him to snap out of it and stop being such a moron. I was so glad when Rhysand took his voice away, even if it was only temporary. Now, saying all of that, I was proud of him for finally turning over a new leaf, so to speak. I'm not saying he fully redeemed himself, because he has a hell of a way to go before that happens, but he certainly got himself back on the right path. I will admit, I questioned his intentions at every turn when he claimed he was all for helping the others in the quest to fight Hybern (Uh, he better help, it's all his fault that Hybern's back in the first freaking place.) and after The Meeting Of The High Lords, when everything went to H-E-Double Hockey Sticks and he "ran right back to Hybern to tell him everything that happened" I may or may not have said a few bad words, and cursed him to the Cauldron and back. So Imagine my surprise when we find out that he actually isn't Hybern's whipping boy, and when he caused a diversion so that Feyre could rescue her sister and that other girl. I was impressed. And he got over himself enough to help Feyre save Rhysand when it really mattered.
And speaking of other things that I did not see coming. Jurian was one of them. I was so surprised, and happy that he turned out to not be an evil, revenge seeking jerkface butt monkey that everyone was so worried about. Also, the ending with Feyre's father. I honestly thought that he was a good for nothing loser who abandoned his daughters, but no. He was actually working so very hard to bring help to them, and it really warmed my heart to see that. Though I do think that his death was pointless. And then there was MOR! I love her so much, and I totally did not see that little plot twist coming at all whatsoever.
There were so many other plot twists in here that I absolutely loved, and there was so much depth and character development in here. Who knew I would end up having a soft spot for the bone carver or Bryaxis. And Amren and her coolness, and the fact that she was willing to sacrifice herself to help the cause.
I am so so so so so so sad to see this story arc end, but I am also super excited to see where else the next arc is going to take us. There are so many things that I want to see. I want to see how things work out for Lucien and Elain, I want things to work out with Amren and Varian. I want things to work out for Cassian and Nesta. I want to see what else happens with Tarquin, and Tamlin, and the Firebird Princess.... And so many other things. Sarah J. Maas is an incredible writer, and I can't wait to see what happens next.