Reviews

A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J. Maas (Reread Mini-Review & Discussion!)

December 27, 2017

Today’s post is a two-part one: first, a reread mini-review, and second, a discussion! I’d really love your input on this topic, so please leave a comment with your experiences!

acotar


I’ve just finished my 3rd read, and while I can fully recognize that this book isn’t nearly on par with its sequel, I don’t think I could fathom ever lowering the rating below 5 stars. This book, when I first read it, was my first real foray back into YA fantasy and fae stories, after a several-year-long hiatus (mostly imposed by a controlling/abusive ex who convinced me I was “too old” for YA). It reminded me why I loved the genre and missed it so much, and gave me back what I had missed for so long: the ability to totally lose myself in a book, a series, a fandom. I can never devalue what Maas did for me with ACOTAR.
Of course, the writing isn’t what her later writing has proven itself to be as she improves, but the depiction of a relationship that’s less than it seems, as well as the fierce bravery and wit that Feyre exhibits in the final third of the story? I love it. I love wild, broken little Rhysand and everything he is for her. I love Lucien’s wit and snark, and the way, when push comes to shove, he proves his friendship and loyalty (to a fault, sometimes). I love meeting all of the other fae – especially gossip-y little Suri, dishing out tea all over the place – and I love the entire world of Prythian, with its courts and struggles and in-fighting and secrets.
I’m probably never going to write a full review for this book, because by this point, I’d just be fangirling for ages about a book most of you have already read, but I wanted to finally put words on paper for how utterly grateful I am that this series gave me back something that I had missed so tremendously.

DISCUSSION

Have you ever read a book that impacted you so deeply that it wasn’t even about the story, but about what the book meant to you in that time frame?

For example, maybe you picked up a book about healing from assault right when you needed the strength to tell a loved one about a situation you faced. Maybe you were questioning your sexuality, and the right story fell into your lap that gave you your first opportunity to say, “That’s me! That’s what I’ve been trying to say!”

Whatever your experience might be, I would love to hear about it. If you don’t feel comfortable going into details, you can just say the name of the book, or you can be as vague or specific as you like. And if you just want to chat privately about it, my contact box, DMs, etc., are always open. <3 I won’t ever judge or belittle your experiences – I just want to know if anyone else has those books that mean SO MUCH to them just because they were exactly the books you needed at that moment.


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  • Reply confessionsofayareader December 27, 2017 at 11:09 am

    I really need to read this one. I bought it awhile ago, but haven’t gotten around to it yet. I’m so sorry to hear about your past relationship. I don’t think you’re ever too old for YA. I’m 40 and mostly read YA. There is just something about it that I love (I also don’t feel 40). Even my 43 year old husband reads some. I will never understand people who try to tell others that they shouldn’t read something. Books are for everyone.

  • Reply A Random Faerie Person December 27, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    How to Make a Wish was the book that “made” me bisexual. But it’s also just a great book, so I think it deserves 5 stars regardless. 🙂

  • Reply emmareadstoomuch December 27, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    i love that discussion question!! i think a lot of my favorite books are more about what they’ve meant to me than the book itself – probably alice’s adventures in wonderland, even, but definitely Just One Day and I’ll Give You the Sun. this is such a wonderful post!!!!

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries January 15, 2018 at 10:24 pm

      Thank you, Emma! I’m so sorry this comment is a million light years late, but I really appreciate the kind words so much. <3

  • Reply existingonpaper December 28, 2017 at 12:03 am

    Ohh, yeees! I love that you’re getting back into YA, and I’m glad you’ve also left that good for nothin’ ex of yours (I hope that’s alright for me to say). I am very passionate about YA, because it’s truly been there for me when no one has, and the two books I feel I can always go back at are I’ll Give You the Sun (for reminding me why I love reading and YA/contemporary so much) and Fangirl (for being a constant reminder that above all, I am a writer). I can’t wait to read what you blog about next!

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries January 15, 2018 at 10:24 pm

      YES, that is DEFINITELY okay for you to say, lol! Thank you! I agree with you 100%. Thank you again for the kind words. <3

  • Reply EIise @thebookishactress December 28, 2017 at 12:07 am

    that was kind of me with Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira. I see people rant on that book all the time, but it literally meant the world to me when I read it because of the side relationship between Natalie and Hannah. I wasn’t questioning when I read it – I knew I was sapphic to some degree – but I hadn’t SEEN it. and their stories as abuse survivors meant the goddamn world to me.
    and thank you for sharing this. always. <3

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries January 15, 2018 at 10:25 pm

      I actually don’t know if I’ve ever heard of that book! I’m rushing off to add it to my Goodreads TBR right this moment. <3 And thank you for the sweet words and being so kind, Elise.

      • Reply EIise @thebookishactress January 16, 2018 at 12:37 am

        ❤️❤️ always. sometimes it’s the time we read books more than the content itself.

  • Reply Kelly (Carty's Corner) December 28, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    Always happy to find other SJM fans, especially with this series. 😀 I’m going to re-read all the books in 2018.
    For me, ACOMAF means so much to me and I think always will. It was in some of the dialogue, and with the way Feyre learns to heal with the Inner Circle’s help, that really hit me and kept me going. At the time, I was struggling through my 2nd year of university (and 3rd year too) with the return of my depression and my anxiety going through the roof at times. ACOMAF helped me keep my sanity in check when I was having panic attacks and also let me realise it was ok to give myself permission to take breaks and fit in my hobbies into a crazy schedule.
    But it worked- I graduated this summer! 🙂 Thanks for sharing this.

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries January 15, 2018 at 10:29 pm

      Oooh, have fun with the re-read! I plan on rereading ACOMAF and ACOWAR some time between now and May, since I just finished rereading ACOTAR.
      Yessss, I feel you! I’m sooo glad that ACOMAF was able to help you. <3 It's honestly amazing how much books can save us from issues like that. And congratulations on graduating!

  • Reply Emma December 28, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    I love these discussion questions!! There are SO many books that have been important to me bc their characters/themes really connected to some of my own life experiences….one of the most recent ones was Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (which I’m ashamed to say I only got around to reading a month ago!). So much of Simon’s experiences reflected things that I’ve felt and experienced for so long, and while I’ve read a lot of queer books that I’ve loved for the rep, this book was one of the ones in which I could most clearly see myself.

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries January 15, 2018 at 10:31 pm

      Thank you, Emma! Don’t feel bad, I only read Simon this past summer, even though it had been on my TBR for quite some time. It was an incredible book, so I’m so happy to hear it resonated so well with you!

  • Reply Lisa December 29, 2017 at 8:26 am

    I can’t remember the name of the book, or even the overall plot of the whole book. But shortly after my mom passed, when I was only 24 and she only 42, I was struggling. I “knew” I was suppose to be ok, she had been sick, we knew her days were short…but I was SO mad. I needed my mom, she was my person. In the book I read (one of the first after losing her) the MC lost someone close to them, and had a REAL moment of ugly grief and got one of the platitudes of “things will get back to normal” or something people say when they don’t know what to say or how to help. The MC said no, there will never be normal again. I will have to learn a whole new normal…and that was my moment. I realized that I would never be a daughter again, so normal wouldn’t ever be a thing for me, but I knew I could find a new normal. And I did, here I am almost 16 years later and I still miss our daily convo’s, her warped sense of humor and her ability to believe in me when I didn’t believe in myself. But I also found my new normal, I try to love everyone the way she did, right where they are, I try to always listen first and react second (still haven’t gotten there yet lol!), and to have the ability to laugh at all of life!

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries January 15, 2018 at 10:33 pm

      I’m so sorry this reply is so late, Lisa, but I am so sorry for your loss. That is so awful, and my heart just aches for you so much. I’m so happy that a book was able to help you cope, though, and that you are finding your “new normal”. <3

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