If you thought there was nothing left for our Book Cover Trends show and tell, then you´re wrong. Oh, so wrong.
The book world doesn´t just live off of young love novels and cheesy romances. There´s more. Much more. As much as I´d like to continue discussing headless men with pumped abs I do feel the need to dive further into the book cover world.
Werewolves, witches, shapeshifters, vampires, assassins, faeries and serial killers deserve book covers, too. It´s the darker book cover side.
Let´s see what´s hot and what´s not in the make-believe world.
Someone Needs To Wear The Crown ( Dystopian, Fantasy )
I´ll admit that these covers are really cool. I like crowns. Wish I wore one myself. As far as book covers for Dystopian / Fantasy go, this is all I see lately. A crown here, a crown there. So many crowns.
There´s just alot you can do with crown images.
I predict a LONG reign for these types of book covers.
The Crow ( Paranormal, Fantasy )
The crow. Probably THE MOST used animal for book covers. I get it. They´re black. They´re mysterious. They´re always attached to the paranormal world. The world has over 8.7 million species.It´s believed that 1-2 million of those species are animals. You cannot tell me that the crow is the only mysterious animal. It´s certainly not the only black one.
I guess the black bear, a black bat, the black widow, a black bunny were already taken?
I see this trend going nowhere. Crows are here to stay. As long as no one is willing to break this stereotype then I guess we´ll be seeing many more crows.
Let´s move on to bad ass women….
I´m Going To Save The World With My Awesomeness ( YA, Dystopian, Fantasy)
These covers definitely say “I´m the chosen one!” A reader knows the story is about a dysfunctional world and someone, a chosen individual ( there´s a 90% chance that someone is a poor human living in some type of slums), will right the wrongs and bring justice to a corrupted world.
These are my least favorite book cover images. I just think they´re…ugly. There´s no other way to express my feelings towards these covers. But still…..
… readers love this cover image. In my opinion, you have to be a huge fan of the fantasy genre to accept the badassness these covers have. Or you just don´t give a hoot. I do, though. There are other ways to attract a reader´s attention. How about using a crown?
Me? I´m The Chosen One That Has To Save The World? ( Dystopian, YA, Fantasy)
Sometimes the badass female lead develops her backbone much later in a story. She has to grow into her role as the chosen one. But before she swaps her pitch fork for a glowing faerie sword she has to change her clothes. One cannot win battles in Versace´s Dystopian Autumn collection.
These ladies want to make a difference. I can´t say which I prefer. The assassins or the princesses.
Speaking of ladies…. up next is a girl who needs our pity….
Emo Girl ( YA, Fantasy )
Okay. I love this story. It´s Twilight with Angels only better. The Fallen by Lauren Kate is one of my favorite reads. But…. the girl on the cover ( which I assume is supposed to be Lucy, MC, is far from being an emo child) does not represent the Heroine. Having 2 hot angels chasing your booty ain´t a good enough reason to cry.
Let´s get away from tough cookie Heroine´s and sobbing messes.
Artistic ( fantasy, Children, YA )
Because it doesn´t always have to be an image of some sexy beast. Okay… Both books are intended for children´s minds so the cover has to match. I totally understand that. And I think it´s okay to use an illustrated cover image. Spot on in these cases.
Doors & Windows ( Mystery, Thriller, Horror )
Definitely creepy. Normally, doors do nothing for me except keep me safe inside my house. But on a book cover? An absolute 9 on the creep scale. Also, these won´t ever go out of style. A trend that´ll stay!
A Rose IS A Rose, Is A Rose, Is A Rose…. ( All genre´s )
Yupp. Roses are DA SHIT!
Seriously, roses are perfect. Old as time but perfect for any genre. You´ve written a romance? Just use an image of a rose. You´ve written a suspense with a psycho? *snorts* Just use a rose that´s leaking blood as a cover image. Is your book about having din-din with a sexy vampire? I recommend a black rose, because…well, you know. The black crow isn´t THAT fitting. Wanna write a fantasy? Ooh, you can´t use a red rose then. Use a white one. Werewolves? Oh, please *wave off* Werewolves are known to be rose experts. They have gardens filled with long-stemmed roses. High quality you´ll only find in a McWolfy garden.
Funny enough, roses can be used for all genre´s. It´s only a matter of how an author / publisher pimps it to match the theme of the story. What´s even funnier? Most of those books don´t have a single rose in their stories. But the covers are often quite stunning.
Okay, people… That´s it for today. Stay tuned for Book Cover Trends: Part Three…. Coming soon!
Hope you enjoyed the lists so far! If you have any ideas you´d like to add or see in the future then feel free to hit me up! Drop a comment below and let me know your thoughts!
Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.
Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s manoeuvrings 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.
In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.
This trilogy accomplished one thing: It made me rethink my standards because I´m slowly convinced that my standards are set too high.
Why? I´ll get to that after I release the ball of energy from my brain via dramatic rant.
A quick rehash – I avoided this series for a long time. I discreetly kept my distance and watched hundreds of bloggers throw out posts after posts about the ACOTAR series.
I caved in. I bought the books. I wanted to see what the fuss was about.
1.739 (!!!) pages later… I´m wondering why I keep ignoring my gut feeling.
Honest to God, I have no idea where to begin with my review here as there´s so much going on in `A Court of Wings and Ruin` book #3 by Sarah J. Maas.
I will start off by shouting out the fair warning about spoilers in this review. Simply saying that this book wasn´t good just doesn´t cut it. I will have to go in-depth with explaining my thoughts and reasons as to WHY this wasn´t my cup of tea. Not even my cup of coffee / hot chocolate or glass of ice-cold coke.
Book #3 starts off with Feyre being back at the Spring Court. Yupp. She tricked the evil enemy and decided to live with Tamlin ( the other supposedly evil enemy ) to save the ones she loved and to possibly find a way to win the war that´s threatening the world.
This is where I have to interrupt because this part just proved I was right before in my review for A Court of Mist and Fury. Tamlin wasn´t the bad guy. He was painted out to be one but wasn´t. He wasn´t Rhys. That was the problem. He loved Feyre and acted out of love. Continued to act out of love and acted like a normal jealous guy/faerie.
I liked his character and would have loved for him to have a happy moment. Besides, Feyre playing the Martyr twice…. uhm…. Let´s say once is enough. Twice is just silly.
Feyre returned to the place that ruined her and acted as Rhys´s spy, gaining all the info on Tamlin`s plans for the war that was near.
When she felt her job was done she practically dusted her hands off her skirts and left the Spring Court, taking Tamlin´s best friend, Lucien, with her.
That scene was a bit more colored out with more deception and mind games but it still had no purpose other than to create more drama and to introduce more characters ( because this book, too, could have been at least 300 pages shorter ).
After a few hurdles Feyre and Lucien made it back to the Night Court where alot of war plotting took place.
It was time to look for alliances and gather them to create a force that would eliminate the evil King for good.
That spanned throughout 699 pages.
And somewhere inbetween all the plottings a reader got a glimps of the romance, the saving of cities, and readers also got to witness how Feyre´s human sisters were dealing with their new lives as faeries.
Here´s the thing- A writer creates a world with 7 realms and only 2 get full attention throughout 3 books.
The Courts of Prythian
After finishing this trilogy the Night Court felt like it was the size of Russia and the Spring Court felt like Area 51 in Nevada. A fenced in piece of land, abandoned and lifeless where the Night Court was full of sparkling stars and rainbow rivers and cities filled with happy people…. ( you get my point).
A reader does get a small glimpse of the Autumn Court but only because Feyre and Lucian pass through it. The Autumn Court could have used a little more details and love because I can imagine that place being truly beautiful.
The Summer Court- well, Feyre, Rhys and Co. visit that place / or had business to take care of there but it wasn´t enough. The author gave the sub characters more attention than she did the Summer Court.
The rest of the courts felt non existant. Sure, they were mentioned and if I remember correctly… a meeting with all the high lords was held at the Dawn Court ( I could be wrong, though. It could have been the Day Court as well).
Back to the story:
After alliances were made the war began.
Now, I´m no expert on the arts of war. I will admit, though, that I´ve been spoiled when it comes to reading about war. I want it to be graphic, I want to feel the character’s pain, I want to see worlds crashing to the ground and people fighting for the greater good. I want to see some crazy shit happening because magic is involved.
I wanted to FINALLY see super Faerie Feyre go all bad ass on the battlefield with her 7 different powers. I wanted her to unleash her beast and wipe out all evil. Maybe even have a one on one stand-off with the evil King and battle together til the bitter end. After all, her character had been worked up to that point. Feyre, the deadly Faerie with the abilities to turn anyone to dust ( I´m being dramatic. No, I´m actually not being dramatic. That´s how she was portrayed).
Instead, I saw none of that happen. Absolutely nothing. Sure, she went off and dealt with a few issues but there was no unleashing Capt. Planet. Why create a character like hers if the author doesn´t intend for her to do anything with her powers? It´s pointless.
There were beings more badass than Feyre was. Faeries that unleashed their inner beasts and slaughtered the evil. Even Feyre´s own sister hid something super powerful inside her and released her unknown powers against the King! Why wasn´t Feyre able to do that? Disappointment at it´s finest.
Tamlin entered the picture in between. Even Feyre´s father. Some long-lost, hidden away Faeries and Faerie hybrids entered the war. But what did it take to end the war? Someone who knew they had the power but waited until enough died to go ape-shit.
When the war was over history repeated itself ( the ending scene from book #1 repeated itself). Someone was dying and only through the help of all the High Lords from all 7 courts was it possible to bring that being back.
My over all opinion? No. Not everything was God awful. There were a handful of scenes that were definitely great. But a handful doesn´t make up for the rest.
Right now, I don´t understand the appeal. I have a good head on my shoulders. I even think myself intelligent enough to understand events that happen in a book. I do not understand how this book was so successful. I do not understand why people haven´t picked up on the stuff the author obviously stole from other books. I cannot wrap my head around the fact that ACOTAR is a bestseller. Because there´s nothing genius about it. No twist in the story. No surprises. Nothing that made my heart skip a few beats.
Feyre was a super strong Faerie but the focus was on how she needed to be independent and become Rhys equal. Feyre´s independence was stressed out to a point where it became eye roll worthy. There is a shadow of 2.0 Social Justice warriors in this book and it´s annoying.
The author made a point out of Rhys giving her the power and to put Tamlin down for wanting to keep her safe. Communication would have solved the Tamlin / Feyre problem. I guess powerful orgasms are gold and talk is overrated.
I´m far from being hateful with my opinion. I just…don´t understand. Do readers ignore the faults in a story when they read? All I know is that I will definitely listen to my gut feeling because I´m spending far too much precious time with this read.
Would I reread this book/series?
Would I recommend this series?
It reeeaaallllly depends on the reader. But if I were forced to give a quick answer I´d say no.
The Cover – 2 stars ( Same style, different color. Green. My opinion on the cover hasn´t changed and I don´t think it ever will. Although, the german book cover is truly beautiful. )
The Story – 2 stars ( please reread my review.)
The Characters – 2 stars ( It´s a sad thing when a reader finds the MC´s and 90% of the sub characters rather dull. The only two characters I truly loved were Cassian and Nesta. Whatever they had going on got me interested and I would really like to find out more about them, together…in a book…hopefully. And Tamlin. Despite how the author let him develop… I liked him. He sure did have a temper. Lol)
My Emotional State After Finishing This Read / The Trilogy Fed up.
I´m giving `A Court of Wings and Ruin` ( A Court of Thorns and Roses #3 ) by Sarah J. Maas, 2 generous stars.
I´m giving the `A Court of Thorns and Roses` Trilogy ( in my opinion ) solid, well deserved 2 stars.
Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.
Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.
With more than a million copies sold of her beloved Throne of Glass series, Sarah J. Maas’s masterful storytelling brings this second book in her seductive and action-packed series to new heights.
After reading the publicly acclaimed „ EPIC“ novel `A Court of Thorns and Roses` I decided to go against my gut feeling and continue with book #2, `A Court of Mist and Fury` by the ( also ) publicly acclaimed genius Sarah J. Maas.
Only this time, instead of making notes while reading the story ( as I would usually do )… I decided to take on a different approach and just read the damn story first. So, basically, I´ve had more than enough time to think about the story and sort out my thoughts.
A quick reminder: Review contains mild to major spoilers. If you hate spoilers then I advise you to come back after you read the book / series yourself.
* pushing glasses up my nose *
It all starts off with the tagline on the book cover.
“For love, she cheated death. For her world, she will become a weapon.”
Not bad, right? It would have been more awesome if she were a weapon at all.
Feyre ( Heroine ) turned into a Faerie, gaining all the powers from each Lord from the different Courts of Prythian. She was the ultimate weapon of destruction after her change. Or, she could have been.
Think of her as Captain Planet without green hair. But did she do anything to show off her powers? No. I mean- If I had so many magical abilities then you can get your ass I´d be outside testing them out and putting them to good use.
Feyre? Not so much. Actually, she did nothing of the sorts. The little powers that slipped from her here and again weren´t enough to display her as the ultimate Faerie.
That was a major disappointment. I expected flying ice daggers, fire pools, mind control, manipulating enemies, etc etc.
Another thing that bothered me beyond means was the fact that Tamlin ( the Hero from book #1) was turned into a villain.
Just because my husband doesn´t agree with me doesn´t make him the bad guy.
The Tamlin topic sends a warped message to it´s readers.
When the going get´s tough, leave. Tamlin and Feyre´s relationship after what had happened Under the Mountain was strained. Feyre felt empty and out of place and somehow she became depressed.
Apparently- Tamlin had some issues, himself, he had to deal with but wasn´t the type to openly work on those issues ( issues that aren´t really clarified). The minute he tries to keep Feyre safe is when she flips her top and leaves him….behind his back.
She´s escapes the evil Tamlin * snorts * and runs into the waiting arms of the Lord of the Night Court. Tamlin´s enemy / the most feared Lord of the country.
Call me old fashioned…but, Feyre could have given Tamlin time to sort his issues out. Maybe could´ve, should´ve considered helping him? But what do I know. * wave off * I´d probably be banished by the 2.0 Feminists for even thinking about staying with someone before leaving when times get rough. I´m all for leaving someone when there´s no reason to stay anymore….but a hit and run action? Leave when he´s gone without telling him? He didn´t do anything to make her leave. It was all on her. At least go with style. Call the relationship off.
Remember: Feyre went Under the Mountain to save the LOVE of her life. Quite a few chapters from book #1 were dedicated to the LOVE she had felt. She was determined to set him free and lift the curse and free all the other Faeries. Then the love was gone and it was Tamlin´s fault? Hahaha. Nice try, Miss Author.
After Feyre left the Spring Court she settled in nicely at the Night Court and learned to read and write ( something she could have also done at the Spring Court,,,just saying) and she faced her own issues with the help of Rhysand ( a.k.a Rhys, the new almighty Hero). He gave her the love, patience and crayons she needed in order to become the Faerie she needed to be.
To say I was disappointed would be an understatement.
Up until that point I was annoyed by the faults in the story.
And this made my blood boil.
All y´all Game of Thrones readers will know who Bronn is. Bronn´s da man. Seeing a Bron is reason enough to believe that the author´s thinking cap became too heavy and slipped, making her snatch another name from another successful story.
Back to the Faeries:
Feyre learned that the feared Night Court didn´t hold up to it´s reputation. Neither did it´s Lord, Rhysand. The bad ass, fearful Faerie was a soft kitty that purred quite alot. ( I´m not kidding )
And here´s a little something that might tickle you guys: His orgasms shake mountains. Literally. I asked my husband if his orgasms were powerful enough to knock over the trees from the nearby forest ( since we don´t live in a mountain area). His answer was a confused look.
Mid-evil sexting via paper and pen and a hint of magic was quite an amusing part of this story, though. I did get a kick out of that.
All jokes aside….
This book was long and stuffed with far too many descriptions. Too many details that killed the story for me. Too many events happening for no greater purpose.
There was no need to paint a character as a villain when his actions didn´t even make him one. There was no need for the author to constantly compare the Heros from book #1 and book #2.
„ Tamlin kept me locked up. Rhys gives me freedom.“
( note: that wasn´t the actual dialogue but it comes pretty close)
There was absolutely no need to give each sub-character a full background story.
The 624 pages could have easily been reduced down to 270 if the author would have ditched the many details ( details that didn´t enhance the story in any way ).
What I did like, though, was the end. I was surprised, myself, because after reading tons of unnecessary info, the end picked up and the author delivered quite an awesome scene. But not mind blowing enough for me to rave about it, though.
So, there were two things that this book focused on:
Rhys and Feyre´s relationship
As I´ve said in my A Court of Thorns and Roses review, I can see why young adults would love this story. It´s your typical fantasy with dramatic moments that touch young ( and maybe older ) hearts.
I can see why others would go nuts over the characters because they´re full of….everything and nothing.
But was this book better than the first one? In a way- Yes. In other ways- It wasn´t.
I bet you´re asking yourselves why I’ve bothered to continue this story if I´m not liking it.
Well, the little hand written recommendation from the bookstore that was taped on the shelf underneath these books said that book 3 was amazing and a MUST READ. I´m waiting for a miracle to happen.
The Cover – 2 stars (The same as the first just a different color. I get that it´s better when books in a trilogy match but that blue….. Nope. Dull.)
The Story – 2 stars ( I have to admit that the author used her imagination a bit more for this story, but the added bits and detail- overload were so pointless. I say fire the editor.)
The Characters – 1,5 stars ( No growth, just a different Court with a different Lord. One I didn´t appreciate. Super powerful Feyre´s actions were disappointing. All the sub-characters had ( thanks to the heavy descriptions and details ) just as much of a say as the MC´s. The idea the author had of shoving the new Hero down my throat backfired. )
My Emotional State After Finishing This Read– Annoyed.
I´m giving `A Court of Mist and Fury` ( A Court of Thorns and Roses #2 ) by Sarah J. Maas 2 out of 5 stars.
Feyre’s survival rests upon her ability to hunt and kill – the forest where she lives is a cold, bleak place in the long winter months. So when she spots a deer in the forest being pursued by a wolf, she cannot resist fighting it for the flesh. But to do so, she must kill the predator and killing something so precious comes at a price …
Dragged to a magical kingdom for the murder of a faerie, Feyre discovers that her captor, his face obscured by a jewelled mask, is hiding far more than his piercing green eyes would suggest. Feyre’s presence at the court is closely guarded, and as she begins to learn why, her feelings for him turn from hostility to passion and the faerie lands become an even more dangerous place. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse, or she will lose him forever.
I have two book titles for you.
Game of Thrones and The Hunger Games.
Add a hint of Breaking Dawn and a sprinkle of the Oscar line „ After all, tomorrow is another day.“ and you don´t have to read `A Court of Thorns and Roses`by the #1 NYT bestseller, Sarah J. Maas, anymore.
Now, brace yourselves. This is going to be a long review with minor to major spoilers. Shall you prefer not to be spoiled then I highly advise you to leave and come back after you read the story yourself.
For weeks I´ve had to look at the rather unflattering book cover of `A Court of Thorns and Roses` on Instagram. Every Insta-blogger insisted on getting on my last nerve with this book. With what reason? Because, D´uh…. it´s an awesome book ( so everyone said).
Someone needs to define the word `awesome` to me again because ( and I quote the brilliant comedian Dylan Moran )
`Mountains and rivers and the fact that I´m still breathing is awesome.`
This story? Not so much.
I´ve avoided this book for a very long time and succeeded in ignoring the Instagram features as well until one fine day….
I decided to go book shopping. Mind you- it´s one of my favorite pastime activities, even if I never walk out with a book, I still love to find out what´s new, etc.
I saw this.
This had me thinking.
I read at least one hundred online reviews, all outstanding and love gushing towards the story. I was nearly blinded by the million insta-feeds for this book….NOW I was seeing tiny, short book recommendations for the one book I´ve been avoiding for so long.
I must have looked like a lost, helpless fool because a sales woman walked right up to me and asked if I needed any help. I thought „ why not“ and asked her if the book was really as good as the recommendation stated.
15 minutes later I was exhausted and caved. I bought the book. An hour later I was at home and opened the book.
I, involuntarily, choked on my own gum.
A map…. of Westeros? Oh, for crying out loud. Really?
Isn´t it funny how Prythian looks like Westeros. And Westeros looks like the UK.
But wait….this gets better. The UK lacks of something significant.
A wall. * faint * For anyone who has read or even heard of the great wall of Game of Thrones… it´s up north where there´s constant cold weather. The wall keeps the bad guys out.
Now look at this and tell me the author wasn´t “inspired” by this idea.
Someone was not in a creative mood that day, huh?
Can you imagine how my mood shifted from suspicious to curious and then dropped to being annoyed? I hadn´t even started reading the dang book and already, I wanted to wrap it up in nice paper and gift it to my neighbor.
But I didn´t. Instead, I read the damn thing from start to finish.
And while I read I had quite a few discussions on the side with people who hadn´t read the book but who had read Game of Thrones and The Hunger Games. Screenshots were sent back and forth, comparing the names of the characters from both books, scenes from the books, etc.
A name from A Court of Thorns and Roses: Hyburn
A name from Game of Thrones: Qyburn
That and the map and the wall. I had a feeling the Wildlings from GoT were the humans from ACOTAR. Both parties bothered by what was beyond the wall until both realized there´s a mutual enemy who had to be dealt with. ( I JUST SPOILED THE PLOT)
If I thought my annoyance couldn´t get any worse, I was wrong.
But the story of ACOTAR shifted. My hopes for a unique story reappeared.
A poverty-stricken family, suffering for the next meal was introduced. Two sisters and their father, huddled in a beaten cottage waiting for the youngest family member, Feyre, to come home from hunting so they wouldn´t have to starve to death.
Not bad, right? I thought it was a nice change to read about a poor family struggling to survive.
What wasn´t so nice was- The characters. Although poor, Feyre´s family were spoiled little shits, whining after their long lost wealth and not accepting their future.
The beginning felt cold. It felt clinical. Emotionless.
Meeh. It was weird.
But things changed for the family after Feyre killed and skinned a wolf during her hunt. It was the one event that changed everyone´s lives forever.
Normally, in Game of Thrones, killing someone / something would result in being beheaded but in this one…. Feyre wasn´t executed for killing the wolf / Faerie ( yes, Faeries could shapeshift. Who would have thought, right? I didn´t know Faeries could bite like vampires, either, yet it happens in this one.). Instead, Feyre was given a choice. To go and live with the Faerie in the faerie land beyond the invisible wall or die on the spot.
Tough and easy choice if you ask me. Of course, Feyre walked into a new future. A future with food and probably share a nice fluffy bed with an elf Faerie, to pay for her crime. Without much of a fight Feyre left her hungry family behind and walked into a better future.
Fast forward- Feyre falls for the Faerie who took her and lives for months with him as his guest.
( Insert Disney´s Beauty and the Beast song, Be Our Guest )
She learned to love the lands she once so hated and was sent back due to highly confidential faerie business.
What a buzz kill, right? Fall in love after planning so many escapes and hiding knives and being 80% of the time bitchy… only to be told she needs to go back home. The hateful efforts all for nothing. * snorts *
But wait- before Feyre was sent on her way, the Faerie Lord, Tamlin ( the Hero ) took it upon himself to give her a few last minute shags before he patted her bottom and waved a white laced hanky after the carriage.
( Note: that wasn´t how it exactly happened. The truth- He screwed her for the first time after he announced she had to leave and then immediately sent her back home to the human world. How romantic. Lol) Still a buzz kill, and we´re only halfway through the story. There´s more to come.
Being back home wasn´t as great as Feyre had planned it would be. She loved the elf Faerie, High Fae, Lord of the Spring Court, Tamlin, and wanted to go back and help him face whatever threat was on it´s way to destroy her pretty Lord. Because it wasn´t enough to be the most powerful Fae in the lands of Fae. It wasn´t enough having the ability to turn into a wolfish beast with horns to slaughter the evil. It wasn´t enough to be more beautiful than Prince Charming himself. He was a lost cause when he was taken.
Now, this was the point where I got excited again. Feyre, the former huntress, was going to help her beloved Lord! Back at the faerie mansion she found it empty, shredded and ruined beyond words. Feyre was too late.
Fast forward again- After the old maid from the fluffy mansion gave the „stupid human“ the truth and directions to where Tamlin was being held as prisoner she sprinted off to a place hidden under a mountain where an evil woman ( who´s name WAS NOT TO BE OUTSPOKEN in the first half of the book) held all Fae lords and their folk captive.
This is where the Hunger Games come in. I swear to God…. when the hand was raised in tribute to the fallen I couldn´t help but laugh.
So, Game of Thrones, a spark of Harry P. Now Katniss Everdeen?
The big question is- Will Katniss Feyre be able to save the one she loves and free the people of Prythian? There´s a book #2 and a book #3. You can figure it out for yourselves.
I mentioned Bella Swan above, remember? Yeah, everything became so „clear“ towards the end. * snorts *
The bottom line- The book would have been so much more enjoyable had the author used her own imagination instead of picking the good bits from other successful stories. I know writers can´t really reinvent the wheel ( to always come up with new things to write about) but a little creativity wouldn´t have hurt. There were quite a few fine written scenes I hadn´t recognized from other books that I actually enjoyed. The rest was just eye roll worthy.
The characters were 2 dimensional. Flat. They had less feeling than I have when it´s time for my monthly strawberry week. There was potential, though. I saw all sorts of great things happening for each character when I started reading. They just never progressed. How am I supposed to feel anxious about certain characters when they´re all emotionless? It´s impossible.
And if I ever read another „ she clicked her tongue…“ I´m gonna file a complaint. One that´s longer and more alive and colorful than this review.
Speaking of writing- The writing was… okay. Not what I would expect from a fantasy story. With ease I read through 416 pages of head-scratch-worthy info. Took me 2 solid days and another few hours to process the clutter I read.
Still- I haven´t completely given up hope. Rumor has it that book #2 is so much better. So much sexier ( so they say. Although I didn´t see much sexy schmexy in this one, so… fingers crossed). So full of everything fabulous. I´d like to be the judge of that myself. I want to see if Feyre will time travel through the stones of Craigh na Dun and meet a hot Highlander named Damie. The possibilities are endless.)
Despite my full rant I´m gonna go ahead and recommend this book. Why? Because I can see why so many people would love the story. If you haven´t read the books I´ve mentioned above then you might be able to enjoy the emotionless adventure ( if a reader doesn´t care for such important nonsense.)
I will say that if you ARE a fan of Game of Thrones or The Hunger games….stay away from this read.
I can see the appeal. But I don´t like it. It´s not for me. There are books out there that are more gripping with less obviously copied bits.
Would I reread this book? Probably not. I´ve got Game of Thrones and The Hunger Games on my shelves already.
The Cover – 2 stars ( It´s not my cup of tea. I find it dull.)
The Story – 2 stars( If the author had added more of her own voice instead of others then it might have been a 4 star read. There was a hint of romance but the rest was full of Feyre´s hateful thoughts. )
The Characters – 2 stars( Emotionless. 2D. Although each had alot to offer… nothing came through. A pity, really. But if I had to pick characters I enjoyed most it would be Tamlin and Lucien. I didn´t care much for Tamlin and Feyre as a couple. )
My emotional state after finishing this read- Confused. Worried I won´t get to see a fanfic in the other installment.
I´m giving `A Court of Thorns and Roses` ( A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Sarah J. Maas 2 out of 5 stars.
It´s taken me years to come up with reasonable words that sum up my feelings towards the `After` series by Anna Todd. Because, the ugly truth is – I couldn´t come up with anything better than swear words to describe my emotions.
Now, before I begin with my actual review I´d like to mention that before I started this series I was oblivious to everything that was associated with this story. All I knew was that the story was originally published on the online writing platform, Wattpad.
That was it. I never heard of Anna Todd nor have I heard of the sensation this story was supposed to be. It was by accident that I found the „After“ series.
Later on ( after finishing the fourth book ) I was informed that `After` is a fan fiction romance and that Harry Styles, from the band 1 Direction, was the inspiration for the male protagonist.
I didn´t know who Harry Style was and I had absolutely no clue who 1 Direction ( or 1D) were. After a quick google check I wasn´t any smarter. I figured it didn´t matter. Nothing could have changed my opinion towards the story, or should I say – nothing could have made me think better or worse of what I forced myself to finish.
Staring with book #1, After… I have to admit that I liked it alot. I´m not a huge fan of college romances but I liked how the story started and how it ended.
A well protected wallflower falls for rude, mysterious bad boy.
What´s unique about this story is that the main characters, Tessa and Hardin, are polar opposites who shouldn´t even be near each other. Two extreme youngsters who can´t seem to stay away from one another. The story has mean – as – shit college students, lots of pre-adult drama and a bet that could break whatever the hell these 2 characters have for each other. The key word is: could. There wouldn´t be more books if the bet had ripped the characters apart for good. There´s alot going on and there´s tension. An entertaining story with so much potential.
Like I said- I liked book #1. I just wish I could say the same for the rest of the books.
With `After We Collided`, book #2, Tessa and Hardins story continues. After a relationship hiccup the couple tries to sort themselves and have a steady relationship. Little do they know how hard it is to be together, especially when one is a complete harm to society.
I self diagnosed the Hero, Hardin, in this book. In book one I truly bought the bad boy act but since his behavior didn´t really improve I began to think he had more than just a few screws missing.
A few things come to my mind when I think of Hardin: alcoholic, abusive, antisocial personality disorder and bastard. Because he is all those things covered by a pretty face of a college student. It´s plain to see that he has / had issues. In book #1 a reader gets to accompany the main characters and live the ups and downs, back and forth with them. In book #2…. nothing changes. Tessa and Hardin are two „kids“ stuck in an awkward nightmare relationship where both have no bloody clue as to how things work. A reader does get to meet the sub characters a little more, which is good. But the rest? Screw ups after screw ups, heartbreak and tears…. it was time to see some happiness happen for these characters. 671 pages full of „Why the hell isn´t she leaving him??“
My final thoughts on `After We Collided`: After reading such an intense story with such intense characters in book #1 I hoped there would be some character development in book #2. There was none. But… there was more emotional abuse. So much that I felt the need to open a bottle of wine afterwards just so I could digest the catastrophe I read.
`After We Fell`, book #3. An 834 page long book. The book is just as thick as the bricks we used to build our house with. 834 pages of repetitive emotional abuse. Tessa and Hardin continue their abusive / back and forth relationship. But this time it´s painful for a reader to witness the mind fucking going on between the main characters and how they pulled other family members into their world of fuck ups. Family and friends of Tessa and Hardin also suffer under the hands of Hardin. He´s a ticking time bomb. He has anger issues. He´s afraid of losing the one thing he can emotionally torture. Hardin claims he loves Tessa but still breaks a piece of her every time he fucks up.
I couldn´t believe I sat through another book that had NO character development, what-so-ever. I got the picture: Hardin wasn´t healthy in any way, on any level. Hardin´s behavior took it´s toll on Tessa and I was so waiting for her to wake up and smell the roses. She needed to get rid of him. Actually, that needed to happen during book #1. After I finished book #3 I opened another bottle of wine.
The new relationship status from Hardin and Tessa: An apocalyptic catastrophe.
`After Ever Happy`, book #4, was the book that finally cracked my calm. I was fuming. I shook my head through 512 pages because there was nothing else I was able to do. Tessa and Hardin- they had ANOTHER life/relationship challenge. Another one. Or, let´s say… they had a few more and those challenges were such a waste of my time because 80% of those challenges were recaps of the ones from the previous books.
My hopes for a character development were shot to the moon after book #3 but I still had a tiny bit of hope that there would be some sort of a happy ever after ( because the title does hint it ). A reader does get a sloppy version of a happy ever after. You get approximately 450 pages of emotional disaster with the main characters and then it´s fast forward from then on.
BAM – you see the characters do this.
BAM – you see the characters do that.
BAM – BAM – BAM – BAM – BAM.
There´s no time for a reader to process all the info shoved in our faces.
The pace of the ending can be compared to the recent season 7 of Game of Thrones. We got 6 seasons of drawn out info and a super speedy season 7.
(NOTE: I love Game of Thrones and would normally never compare the genius of a story to the After series, except when referring to the pace. I´m probably going to go to hell for even mentioning GoT in this review. )
Anyways- the finale ending of the After series… A full-blown disappointment. So disappointed that I returned book #4. I don´t want to have a book like that on my kindle.
My overall feelings towards this series: A big fat NOPE.
It´s unnecessarily complicated, the Hero is abusive, the relationship Hardin and Tessa have is over the top unhealthy. What they have is a twisted sense of reality. There´s nothing remotely romantic about 2 young adults acting the way they did. The story was a train wreck I should have looked away from.
But wait… there´s one more. Yupp. I kid you not. There´s a 5th book in the series.
`Before` ( After #5 ) and it´s the story of Hardin´s life before he permanently ruined Tessa´s life.
I didn´t even try to read it. Why would I? A reader can make their own picture of Hardin´s past and readers definitely find out the true reason behind his abusive behavior in book 3 & 4. I´m really not interested in further details. My guess is that the author wrote this book for her dedicated fans, which is fine. Only I´m not interested in spending another dime on this story and I´m not interested in spending more hours on reading about a glorified prick.
So, there we have it. Not everything with the words `sensation`printed on it is actually a sensation. The only thing sensational about the After series is that so many people loved it.
Would I reread this series? Nope. Not now. Not ever again.
Would I recommend this series? No.
The Covers – 4 stars ( The covers have nothing to do with the story. They´re all actually pretty to look at )
The Story – 1 star ( No. Either I´m too old to appreciate the kind of twisted romance After is or I´m a different kind of romance reader. Either way- No. )
The Characters – 1 star ( The world doesn´t have enough wine to help me get over these kids)
My emotional state after finishing this read – I feel like I need to upgrade from wine to vodka.
I´m giving the whole `After`series by Anna Todd 1 out of 5 stars.