Title: A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3)
Author: Sarah J. Maas
I’ve been a fan of Sarah J. Maas for a while now, ever since I read Throne of Glass back when that was fresh onto bookshop shelves. Her books just press buttons for me that only the likes of Harry Potter and His Dark Materials and other real bookshelf treasures press for me. Books that I become completely entangled in emotionally, that take me entirely out of reality and into a world that thrills me to inhabit. And I don’t know how she crams so much plot and character and world into such reasonably sized books. I remember turning A Court of Thorns and Roses over in my hands after I first read it and being completely confounded by its TARDIS-esque proportions. Just how?
Incidentally, I acquired A Court of Thorns and Roses at MCM Comic Con 2015 when I got it and The Assassin’s Blade signed by Sarah J. Maas is actual person. I was wearing an Assassin’s Creed outfit at the time, which she recognised immediately. Fangirl moment!
A Court of Wings and Ruin is by no means an exception to the button-pressing phenomenon. In fact, none of her books are an exception. Sarah J. Maas just knows how to write appealing but realistic heroines. Like the rest of us, Feyre is capable of making catastrophic mistakes and being immature and impetuous, but on the other hand, she is also capable of exceptional strength and courage and wisdom – things we are also capable of.
I get very worried about YA with a heavy romantic element because it can very easily be unrealistic in quite a dangerous way. But Sarah J. Maas manages to depict romance that is both swoonworthy but also places the female in a very strong, modern role. Her romance is aspirational, not fantastical.
In this third outing for Feyre, we delve even deeper into the world of Prythian (which looks suspiciously like Britain on the map page!). It’s actually quite a political episode, which does make it a little tedious at times, especially if you’re quite a non-political person like me. However, we do get to know more about the other kingdoms and the personalities that rule over them, which is what I’ve been waiting for in this series. And actually it works really well at the end when all these political threads are tied together.
The ending is really what makes this book, and it’s a full-circle type of ending that makes the conclusion of this episode of Feyre’s life pleasingly satisfactory. I’ve just got a bit of foreboding that the next episode, which we’ve been promised at the end of this book despite it being a nice conclusion, will be a happy-not-so-happy family episode. I’m so not into that, but we’ll have to wait and see. Knowing Sarah, she’ll still have me wanting more, even if it is filled with post-hero bratty children!