Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas + Feyre/Rhys Playlist

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Warning: If you’ve not read A Court of Thorns and Roses or A Court of Mist and Fury then I would highly recommend not reading this as it has spoilers for both. However, if you’ve read both then this is a spoiler-free review.


31451174Title: A Court of Wings and Ruin (ACOTAR #3)
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Format: eBook
Goodreads Synopsis:

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.

5STARRATINGBNM


Everyone who knows me knows that A Court of Mist and Fury is one of my all-time favorite books (reread in the past year more times than I can even count), A Court of Thorns and Roses one of my all-time favorite series. So, you know, I had some high expectations going into A Court of Wings and Ruin. Let me just say, Sarah J. Maas took every single one of those expectations and blew them out of the water! I’m in awe over this book, in tears because I loved it so much. It was everything I never even thought to hope for. Given that I just finished it about thirty minutes ago I’ll admit this review might end up being a mess because I have a lot of feelings. That aside, just wow – this book took me on an unforgettable adventure that was very intense and played on my emotions in the best way possible.

“For a moment, I let myself see past the glamour that concealed the tattoo on my right hand and forearm. The markings of my true heart. My true title. High Lady of the Night Court.”

A Court of Mist and Fury ended with the reveal of a heartbreaking betrayal that now has Feyre back in the Spring Court biding her time, preparing to take Tamlin down from the inside as well as gathering information about Hybern’s movements. The King of Hybern is raising his vast armies and setting his sights on shattering the wall and conquering Prythian once and for all. Which leaves Feyre and the others racing against the clock to make alliances and raise armies of their own in hopes of taking down the King and saving everyone. A Court of Wings and Ruin is an unputdownable read that will leave you breathlessly turning pages, wanting to know exactly how this adventure is going to end.

I’m completely speechless about the world building. Something I’ve loved since book one is the world Sarah J. Maas so masterfully crafted within these pages. It’s as beautiful as it is chilling and continues to be just that in this installment. However, A Court of Wings and Ruin really took all of it to the next level. She revealed even more of the history of Prythian, things that I had been wondering about since the first book. We finally got to see some of the other courts – Autumn, Winter, and Dawn. Albeit not nearly enough which is understandable given the events but is hopefully remedied in future books. Honestly, it made me realize the sheer size of this book world which left me in awe. What I loved most, however, was the fact that all of this information was seamlessly woven into the story. There were never any moments of info dumping or even moments where the pacing slowed down one bit. Which thoroughly showcases how incredible a writer Sarah J. Maas is. Also, I have to give her some major props for those battle scenes. She wasn’t afraid to go there that’s for sure, they were intense and descriptive.

“No going back now,” Cassian said to Rhys, gesturing to his wings.

Rhys slid his hands into his pockets. “I figured it’s time for the world to know who really has the largest wing-span.”

Cassian laughed, and even Azriel smiled. Mor gave me a look that had me biting my lip to keep from howling.”

These characters, I don’t even know where to start. Not only because I don’t want to give anything away but because the characters in this series are so special to me that I’m beyond words. Sarah J. Maas created a wonderfully unique cast of characters who are all flawed, none are wholly good or bad. (Well, aside from Hybern for obvious reasons.) That’s something that has not only made them so realistic but also some of my favorite characters ever. What I loved most about this book was the fact that a lot of character backstory was revealed which answered questions I’ve had since the previous book. Also, I was completely surprised by several characters. I won’t say much, again because I don’t want to give anything away, but every time I had my mind made up about a character the rug was pulled out from under me big time. All of that aside, so many new characters are introduced within the pages of A Court of Wings and Ruin. From the High Lords of the other courts we didn’t meet in the previous novels to a lot of other characters. By the time I neared the end I didn’t want to say goodbye to any of them, especially my Court of Dreams lovelies.

Feyre has changed so much from the girl we first met in A Court of Thorns and Roses who was just trying to keep her family alive. She’s been through hell and back and become stronger because of it. In this we see her stepping into the role of High Lady and learning how to navigate that new responsibility. We also see her learn who she really is and accept herself flaws and all, which I loved so much.

“You do not fear,” Rhys breathed. “You do not falter. You do not yield. You go in, you get her, and you come out again.”

I nodded again, holding his stare.

“Remember that you are a wolf. And you cannot be caged.”

Rhys has also changed so much from who we first met in A Court of Thorns and Roses. He’s finally decided to take his mask off and let the world see who he really is. That he’s someone who will sacrifice anything, even himself, to save those that he loves. I loved seeing him let that wall down, seeing him take that mask off.

Then, of course, Feyre and Rhys together. I just love them together so much. They’re both such self-sacrificing characters and they both struggle with a lot of things but they always manage to pull each other out of it. I love how Sarah J. Maas made it a point to showcase the fact that just because they’re together doesn’t mean their personal demons went away. I’m glad it didn’t turn into a ‘love cures all’ situation. Not to mention the mutual respect they have for each other. The perfect example of a well written, healthy romance.  

“…Rhys stared at all of us, somehow assembled here in the sun-drenched open grasses without being given the order. Our family – our court. The Court of Dreams.

[…]

“I believe everything happens for a reason. Whether it is decided by the Mother, or the Cauldron, or some sort of tapestry of Fate, I don’t know. I don’t really care. But I am grateful for it, whatever it is. Grateful that it brought you all into my life.”

Also, my Court of Dreams/Inner Circle lovelies; Cassian, Mor, Azriel, and Amren. I can’t say much about any of them because so much is revealed in terms of each of their backstories. I don’t want to spoil anything. However, I loved seeing more of Azriel and how this more humorous side of him came out. I also loved seeing how much they all care for each other. And, of course, I can’t forget Nesta and Elain who were transformed into Fae at the end of the previous book. Both surprised me a lot, especially Nesta. I adored seeing the sibling relationship between them and Feyre grow. In fact, I just loved the family dynamic between all of my Court of Dreams lovelies and how much it grew.

Then last but not least, Lucien. I’m being so vague right now but he was my favorite in A Court of Thorns and Roses. I love where his story went in this one. You’ll have to read to find out what happens.

“A gift. All of it.”

Overall, A Court of Wings and Ruin was an adventure that I never wanted to end! I loved it and couldn’t have asked for a better ending for Feyre’s story. It gave me answers to a lot of the questions I had from previous books while also giving me new questions for future books. I love how it was a conclusion but also felt like a beginning. I can’t wait to see where the other books in this series take us. However, I know not having Feyre as the main protagonist is going to take some getting used to. I’ll miss her too much. All of that aside, bring on the book hangover because I’m not getting over this one for a long time!


Bonus: Feyre/Rhys Playlist

Because, of course, when I really ship two characters I have to make a playlist for them. Honestly, Dark Side by Kelly Clarkson is my theme song for Feysand. Hope you guys enjoy! I also have a mini Court of Dreams/Inner Circle playlist that is still a work in progress if you guys want to check it out. 😊


Have you read A Court of Wings and Ruin? What did you think? If not is it on your TBR?

spsig

 

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54 thoughts on “Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas + Feyre/Rhys Playlist

  1. Is it not on your TBR?!?! ARE YOU KIDDING US!? WE’VE BEEN WAITING FOR YEARS FOR THIS TO BE RELEASED (we are exaggerating but yea…) We heard of few spoilers but we need confirmation now…Does MORIEL happen? P.S. your review literally got all the feels out of us – don’t whether we should be glad or crying! It’s too muchhh!!!! XD XD XD XD

    Liked by 1 person

    • It feels like the wait has been years long though doesn’t it? Even though it’s actually just coming up on a year since ACOMAF was released. As for Moriel… That is a HUGE spoiler. There’s a lot more of Mor’s backstory in ACOWAR and most of it isn’t revealed until near the ending. I could tell you if Moriel happens but it’s a major part of her development as a character and definitely better read than told.
      Glad you guys enjoyed my review! And I hope you end up loving ACOWAR!! 😁

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh okay we totally understand 😊! We’re glad that SJMaas develops her characters and we love a bit (a lot) of backstory 😉 There’s a high chance we’ll end up loving ACOWAR! SJMaas is just that cool!! 😆😆

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  2. Great great GREAT review for this book Melissa! I can completely guess the character you were surprised by because s/he (not even giving the gender away here) was someone I was really surprised by as well but in the very best way. It just goes to show how amazing SJM actually is at writing that she can turn a character around like that. I loved this book as well, and honestly it was everything I wanted as well.
    I really really enjoyed seeing more of the different courts, in fact what we saw of the Dawn Court was my favourite (other than Velaris of course) and I agree with what you said about the battle scenes as well. SJM really wasn’t afraid to shed a lot of blood and cause a lot of pain with those scenes was she? I think my favourite part of this book, and the whole series actually, was the character development. Not just Feyre and Rhysand who lets face it have had mind-blowing development over the past three books, but the more secondary character as well. I loved how she wrote what Nesta and Elian were going through, and Mor’s story as well, her past and her reveal, was just heartbreaking.
    I really like Lucian and it was great seeing more of him in this book as well, especially considering everything that was revealed about him as well.
    Basically I’m just never going to be over this book. Pretty much everything from the scene in Hybern’s camp to the last page had me on the very edge of my seat. I’ really excited to go back to this world again. We just got book three and I’m already excited for book four! 😀
    Also great playlist. I need to download these songs but once I have them I will definitely give them all a list, maybe while re-reading ACOMAF as well!
    Again great review! 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Beth!! 😁♥ Three of the characters actually surprised me big time but I have a feeling I know which one you’re talking about because said character was the one that surprised me the most. I was in shock because I had my mind completely made up about them only for SJM to completely turn it around. I really do hope we see more of them in the future books because now I want to know more about them. And it definitely goes to show how amazing of a writer she is that she can completely turn a character around like that AND make it feel natural and so obvious after the reveal. She’s fantastic at character development that’s for sure.
      What we saw of Dawn Court was my favorite aside from Velaris too! I wish we had seen even more of Dawn Court. And after we met Helion I started wishing we could see Day Court too because I’m curious. I agree, SJM really wasn’t afraid to break hearts and shed blood with those battle scenes. They were so intense and had me of the edge of my seat! The character development has definitely been my favorite part too. Especially in this one with the secondary characters because, like you said, it was incredible in terms of that. I agree about Nesta and Elain. I especially feel like Nesta was developed wonderfully in this book! It was so great to see her and Feyre grow closer. And Mor’s backstory was actually my favorite character backstory, definitely broke my heart but it was great finally learning more about her and getting an answer to a question that had been bothering me since ACOMAF. I was just so happy with what SJM decided to do with her character and hope it’s something that’s explored more later on in the series. I wouldn’t mind a Mor centric book to be honest.
      Everything revealed about Lucien was incredible! My jaw dropped and I really hope that isn’t the last we’ll see of all of that and that Feyre tells him.
      Me either. I’m never going to be over it! And same about the whole last part of the book having you on the edge of your seat, that was me too. I can’t wait for book four either! Though it will be a little weird not being inside Feyre’s head anymore. I just got used to her POV, you know?
      Thanks so much! I hope you enjoy the playlist. You so have to tell me if you think Dark Side by Kelly Clarkson fits Feyre and Rhys. 😂🙈

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      • That’s all right! 😀 ❤ And actually now I'm trying to guess the others, I have a 99% surety on two of them, just because if I'm thinking of the right two then they really surprised me as well, struggling with the last one though. I will write at the bottom of this comment who my three guesses are so if anyone else is reading this potential spoilers at the bottom of this comment! 😀
        Yeah I think SJM is really good at keeping her characters intentions hidden so you never know what they're thinking of until they actually reveal themselves. It's an incredible talent to be able to write characters like that! 😀
        It sounded like a beautiful court, I'm really really hoping we get to see more of the other courts, and actually when you think about it the Day Court is the only one we haven't seen yet so it makes me think something big/epic will happen there (maybe relate to Lucien).
        I loved the battle scenes, though yeah terrifying to read at times, loved Nesta and Elian and actually really loved seeing more of the two of them interacting with Feyre because that wasn't as present in the first two books was it, at least not to the extent it was in this one. Mor completely broke my heart with her story, and I hope she gets to be happy one day (I feel like she will, SJM can't leave her character like that can she?) Mor centric would be an amazing book, and hopefully we will get one one day. There are still three more books to come aren't there?
        I have a feeling ACOWAR definitely wasn't the last of Lucien's story. I am like 100% sure that one of the spin-offs is his story. At least even though Feyre's story was the last we still have more from this world to look forwards too. And she'll definitely be in the next books, even if it is just as a side character.
        That's all right! And don't worry I'll definitely let you know once I listen to that song again! 😀 ❤

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      • You’re probably right on the ones you were guessing, especially the two because they surprised me the most. But you didn’t write your guesses! And now I’m curious about which were your guesses. 😂😂 (You know one of them is Tamlin but he isn’t the one who surprised me the most.)
        Oh she definitely is and because of that and how characters surprised me in ACOWAR I’m going to start keeping more of an open mind when it comes to her characters. It really is an incredible talent.
        Right? Day Court was the only court we never saw. But yeah, I agree that because of that fact there is bound to be something big that happens involving Day Court which I’m hoping has to do with Lucien. I really just want a Lucien centric book now too. I feel like there’s so much I want to know about a lot of characters like Az and Cassian and Nesta and Elain too that three more books and two novellas might not be enough. 🙈
        It really was so great to see the interaction between Nesta, Elain, and Feyre. Which is something else I hope we see in future books too. We don’t get enough great sister relationships in fantasy. I hope Mor gets a happy ending too! And I definitely think her story is going to be one SJM explores. I’m just wondering how exactly the rest of the books in the series are going to go. There’s so much information going around that I’m not sure what is fact and what isn’t at this point. I heard three books and each are going to be different characters stories and then two novellas. But I’m not completely sure.
        Same! With everything that was revealed about Lucien that can’t be the last of his story. And true at least there’s that. Although, I also can’t help hoping one of the novellas will be in Rhys’s POV or something and that we’ll get a bit more of those two and their future. 😊

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      • I realised like five seconds before I read your comment I forgot to put my guesses in. What happens when I write long comments, by the time I get to the end I forget what I’ve written at the beginning! 😀 My two I’m-sure-of guesses were Tamlin and Jurian, as for the third I’m thinking either Mor or Helion, just because of what was revealed about them later on in the story.
        It really is, I think when it comes to the next ToG book I’m going to remember this and have no expectations for any of the characters in it. Yep, we saw the High Lord but nothing of the court. I wonder if that means there’s some big reveal that we need more than a small part of ACOWAR to get through you know? Maybe not even to do with Lucian but in general.
        No we definitely don’t, and that’s why it was so great to see it in this book I think. I’d love to see more and if Nesta and Elian each get their own book then that means plenty more development for the two of them and they’re relationship with Feyre. Mor deserves a happy ending!
        I reckon there’ll be a book for Nesta and Cassian, a book for Elian and Lucian, and a book for Mor and Azriel. Even if those pairing don’t end up together I feel like their stories are entwined so it would make sense for them to share books you know?
        I’m kind of hoping if there is a Lucian book it’s the next on released. I kind of want to see more from him, and now I’ve got to the end of this comment I’m wondering if Lucian is the third character who ended up surprising you instead of Mor/Helion.

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      • Two of them were definitely Tamlin and Jurian! 😁 Jurian being the one who surprised me the most because I never expected where his story went. SJM did such a great job of making us think he was completely terrible, you know? Plus, the parallels between the whole Drakon/Miryam/Jurian story and Rhys/Feyre/Tamlin story. There were a lot of parallels. (Which, by the way, did you cheer when we finally met Drakon!? I was so happy!) And although Mor and Helion both surprised me it was more of a “Oh… That makes sense!” kind of surprise. Thinking back to ACOTAR and then to ACOMAF (as far as Mor goes and her reaction to Feyre prying a bit) made it all make sense. The third one that really surprised me was Feyre’s father. I wasn’t expecting that to happen at all! Given everything in the beginning of ACOTAR, you know?
        That’s what I’m wondering too! There’s got to be a bigger reason we didn’t see the Day Court. Either that or Helion just got lucky with Hybern not going near his court. I have a big feeling that everything with Lucien means we’ll see it eventually and not just because of that reveal.
        Same, here’s to hoping! 😊
        That’s what I was thinking. I could definitely see the remaining three books being Nesta/Cassian, Elain/Lucien, and Mor/Azriel. Just because all three were left with a lot of openness. That and I saw somewhere where someone said SJM said the other three books deal with relationships that weren’t concluded in ACOWAR. But as for the two novellas, I wonder what they’ll be about.
        I really hope if Lucien gets a book it’s released next too! And Lucien actually didn’t surprise me. Beyond what’s revealed I always knew he had it in him to really do something. He was always so loyal and he was Feyre’s first friend. 😊

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      • I can see why, they were the two that surprised me the most as well. Especially because I changed my opinion on both Tamlin and Jurian so many times when it looked like they were changing sides again and again. Ohh, I didn’t think of it that way re the parallels but now you’ve mentioned it yes I completely do. I really want to re-read the whole series again from the beginning, so I can jump from one book to the next pretty much instantly. I did love meeting Drakon though, especially because what with them essentially going missing I wasn’t sure it would ever happen.
        I didn’t notice that about Mor but then again it’s been a while since I read the second book so that could be why. Ohh, I completely get that, and yeah that part surprised me as well but because their father was pretty much a non character for ACOMAF and the beginning of ACOWAR he didn’t really enter my mind as a possibility you know?
        Well there’s that possibility as well. Still whatever the reason was I do hope we get to see the Day Court at some point, and more of the other courts as well because there’s so much to see still of Prythian.
        Well I don’t think the Nesta/Cassian, Elain/Lucien, and Mor/Azriel were dealt with in this book, at least not in a way that concluded the story you know? Maybe one of the novellas will be about Tamlin, I think that could be interesting, and I dunno about the other one, maybe Jurian or Drakon and Miriam. it could be anything couldn’t it?
        Same here, after ACOWAR I really really want more Lucien, I was surprised by him in the third book, but he tried so hard to be a friend for Feyre and I loved that aspect of his character you know? 🙂

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      • Same! I kept changing my opinion about Tamlin and Jurian again and again. First Tamlin goes back to Hybern after the High Lord meeting and then for a second there whenever they were leaving the Hybern camp with Elain I thought that Jurian betrayed them. I don’t even remember why but yeah it’s made me realize I judge her characters quickly when maybe I shouldn’t. 😂 I want to reread the whole series too! I’m definitely going to have to before the fourth book is released even though it’s not Feyre’s story anymore. I was so confused by the whole Drakon and Miryam going missing thing! For a second I hated them both a little because I thought they abandoned Rhys and given the fact that he sacrificed so much in the first war to help both of them it seemed like a crappy thing to do, you know? But then they showed up to save the day and it was funny finding out why it seemed like they vanished lol. Exactly! I seriously forgot their father even existed because he wasn’t in ACOMAF beyond some vague mentions. I didn’t think we’d ever see him again and then suddenly he become a key player in their surviving the war. Plot twist! Sad how things ended for him though.
        I hope so too. And I hope we see Winter Court in more detail. I honestly wouldn’t mind a Kallias novella because I loved him and Viven so much. Especially Viven! She became a favorite right when we met her. (Actually I need novellas for all of the High Lords minus Beron. Instead of Beron I want an Eris novella because I definitely think there’s more to him than meets the eye.)
        They really weren’t which is why I think the next three books will be about their stories. And it would be awesome if one of the novellas is about Tamlin and then one covers the whole Jurian/Miryam/Darkon thing. I think I saw somewhere that SJM said she might do a prequel with them.
        Me too! That’s always been one of my favorite things about Lucien, how loyal he is in his friendships. I mean, of course, Tamlin took advantage of that in a bad way but I adore his friendship with Feyre. I want to reread ACOTAR just for that friendship honestly. 😊

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      • It was like constantly going around in circles; trusting Tamlin, not trusting Tamlin, trusting Jurian, not trusting Jurian. I guess I’m the same and I judge her characters too quickly as well but I think that’s possibly what SJM wants so then she can pull these reveals about the real side Tamlin and Jurian are working for and shock everyone who had formed the opposite opinion. Still totally going to remember this when I start reading her next book, whatever one she’ll be releasing next! I’m going to have to do the same re. reading this whole series. Plus it will be nice to go back to Feyre and Rhy’s story before seeing them as secondary characters in the fourth book you know?
        Ha, yeah I remember that, I was sure they would be found but I never suspected they’d still be on the same island! Just proves how effective their spell really was if it kept everyone away!
        Again part of me thinks that was something SJM did on purpose. Make everyone forget him so there can be a big reveal in the third book when he turns up and saves the day! 😀 Oh really sad, especially for Nesta having to see it and never really being as close to their father as Feyre and Elain were. I definitely want a Kallias and Viven novella. I loved what little glimpse we got at their story in ACOWAR, and I would love to see a full length novella about their past and their relationship, I think that would be amazing to read. I even think and Beron novella could be interesting, especially because of what could be happening with his oldest son in the near future…
        I’m kind of hoping one of the novellas is about Tamlin because I do feel his story is unfinished in a way, maybe SJM can use the next three books to redeem his character a little more and the novella can be the last part of his redemption journey! 🙂 Ohh, a prequel would be amazing too.
        Tamlin was not a good friend to Lucien at all, and even though Feyre thought she wasn’t at the beginning of the book she did prove she was by the end didn’t she. I’d love to see more of Feyre and Lucien just for the friendship between them. 😀

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      • I think that’s what she wanted too, having us judge certain characters quickly only to be completely surprised by them. It made for a lot of jaw drop moments for sure and had me questioning who I could actually trust beyond the more central characters. 😂 But yeah, I will definitely be trying not to do that anymore. Although watch her trick us again in future books. I can see that happening! Same about rereading.
        I didn’t think they would be on the same island either! I seriously thought Drakon and Miryam fled because of Jurian but nope they were right in front of their faces the whole time. Definitely goes to show how effective the spell they used was.
        I think so too. And it makes a lot of the little mentions of him in ACOMAF make more sense now. Mostly the fact that he was away for so long and kept saying he still had business to do through whatever letters he sent back to them. I feel like everything that happened with their dad is going to be a big part of Nesta’s story. YES! I would love a novella that told the story of Kallias and Viven’s past and everything. Honestly I want a mini-novella to show what happened when everything from ACOTAR ended and he want back to Winter Court. 🙈 I just need all of the novellas for this series. Like never ending novellas! There’s way too much that I want to know about the characters.
        I’m hoping so too and it would be interesting if he play a bigger role in the next three books so we could see more of his redemption. There was so much left open for Tamlin going forward that I would love to see more of him. (Never thought I would say that after ACOMAF.)
        He really wasn’t but oddly enough I think Lucien would look past everything in only the way a true friend could. Lucien has that unconditional loyalty and with everything at the end of ACOWAR I don’t think he’ll never not be Tamlin’s friend. Which, again, I love that about his character. But yes! I definitely need more of Lucien and Feyre’s friendship! 😁

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      • So so many jaw dropping moments. I just never knew what was coming next with her characters because it was like they never fully revealed what side they were actually fighting for. I wouldn’t have been surprised if it turned out one of the High Lords had been working with Hybern the whole time they way things were going. That will help you going into the ToG books, and it’s something I’ll remember as well. Even that was kind of a little twist. I was anticipating something horrible had happened to them but it just turned out to be a case of rogue magic! 😀
        You’d know more about that than I would given you’ve re-read it recently, but I think even if I had as well I may not have actually picked up on that. Ohh, that would be interesting to read. I’d just love to see more of Nesta in general to be honest though. 🙂
        I’d kind of love a novella about all the High Lords going back to their courts after everything that happened Under the Mountain, that could end up being really interesting reading. Yeah this is one series we’re just never going to want to end right? 🙂
        I feel like he could definitely play a bigger role in Lucien’s story, just because I’d kind of like seeing their friendship repaired. They both have a lot of history and despite everything Tamlin did end up helping Lucien quite a bit in the beginning didn’t he? I’d still like Tamlin to apologise to Lucien though. Despite the fact that Lucien is still likely his friend he still need an apology. 🙂

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      • Same! I wouldn’t have been surprised if one of the High Lords was working for Hybern the whole time too. During the last battle whenever Beron, Jurian, and Tamlin showed up for a second I actually thought that they were showing up to fight with Hybern because of Rhys’s reaction but then they weren’t. I was too, I thought Jurian was lying and that he had found Miryam and Drakon and was just tricking them but well Rhys looked into his mind so that wasn’t possible after that moment.
        Honestly, I feel like the mentions of their father in ACOMAF were so vague and not often that I don’t think any of us caught it. Or at least from what I’ve seen. But yes, I want to see more of Nesta in general too. I’m really hoping the next book is hers because I feel like there was this focus on her at the end that makes me think it will be. That and I can’t wait to see what happens between her and Cassian. 😊
        Me too! That could be really interesting and I’ve always wished we saw Rhys when he first landed back in the Night Court. I mean we’ve heard about it but I want to read the full scene of it. 😂 Yep! I never want it to end lol.
        That’s what I’m thinking, that Tamlin could end up being a big part of Lucien’s story. I would love to see their friendship repaired and explored. It would be nice to see their past and history first hand too. And I completely agree that, either way, Tamlin needs to apologize to Lucien. I’d like to see that too. 😊

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      • Sorry, ignore that previous comment, my phone was playing up. Anyway, it would have been interesting to have one of the High Lords working against the others. After all there were people again for Hybern from the inside so why not the other way around as well? That would make an interesting novella. Can you imagine how the inner circle must have reacted seeing him for the first time in fifty years and him talking about a mate as well?!
        Exactly, there must have been something there that caused the two of them to become such close friends. It would be nice if they could find a way back to that somehow, certainly for the two of them at least. Plus yeah I’d love to see their history as well. That would make an interesting novella! 😀

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      • It would have! I’m actually a little surprised that, given Hybern had two playing double agent, that none of the ones on their side were playing double agent for Hybern. Then again after everything they went through Under the Mountain it makes sense that they wouldn’t have been with Hybern no matter what. I imagine there were a lot of hugs and possibly some tears whenever the Inner Circle met back up with Rhys. That’s one novella that would make me cry lol. If I remember correctly it was Mor he winnowed to at the end of ACOTAR and so for a while she was the only one who knew about the mate thing.
        Yep and it really would. I swear we just need all of the novellas. Like a novella for every aspect of this world. That and the fact that there are other Fae territories besides Hybern and Prythian. I want to learn more about them. 😊

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      • It would have been an interesting twist, but then again maybe there was no room in the book for a double agent on Hybern’s side. I suppose yeah, after Under the Mountain and what Amarantha did to the people there it would be hard for any of them to side with Hybern against the other High Lords.
        I kind of really really really want to see that as a novella now. I imagine it would be one that made me cry but in a happy way you know? God can you imagine Mor and the others finally seeing Rhys again after about 50 years. How emotional would that have been?!
        So so many novellas. Still maybe if we talk about it enough we can use our book powers to convince SJM to write more! 😀

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      • That’s what I’m thinking. I feel like any of the High Lords would have either fought with Rhys or decided to just go into hiding rather than work with Hybern. Even Beron, I don’t think he would have gone to Hybern no matter any threat to do so. I don’t think Eris would have let him either way also.
        Me too! I could definitely see a novella where we get to see Rhys reunite with everyone making me cry. Just thinking about it makes me tear up a little! I could see Cassian all trying to be tough and keep from crying but then crying anyways and it would be the perfect novella I’m telling you. Or even just an extra scene in a special edition or something.
        YES! Maybe if we do our book powers will work. We can only hope! lol 😃
        Also! I haven’t had the chance to get that map sent out to you yet. BUT as soon as I’m able to I’ll get it sent out and send you an email with the tracking, I promise. 😊

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      • In that case maybe it would have been an interesting dynamic to see some of them go into hiding. I dunno I guess I just want so much more from Feyre and Rhys I was SJM to re-write every single possibility for ACOWAR! 😀
        Oh that would be amazing. I feel like we want so much from this world, SJM is never going to be able to stop writing about it because thinking of the characters there’s so much I still want to see.
        I’m putting a lot of faith in our book powers Melissa! 😀
        That’s fine, you’re doing me a massive favour so send it out whenever you have the chance! 🙂 ❤

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      • I think it would have. If some of them would have went into hiding I definitely think there would have been a different outcome to that battle at the end. Especially given that even with the extra help and Drakon showing up they almost lost. Me too! I want more of Feyre and Rhys too. It would be amazing if SJM wrote every possibility for ACOWAR. Really I’m hoping we’ll somehow get more Feyre/Rhys POV in the future even if it’s a short novella or an extra scene. 🙈
        Right? We just need the series to never end and for SJM to write everything. There’s so much to explore and I’m probably going to be really sad when it does actually end.
        Same about the book powers! I blame every time this year whenever a book we wanted was announced after we talked about it. 😂

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      • Just think if even one of the High Lords had gone into hiding how much could that have changed the battle when the book was near its end. How many more lives could have been lost before Rhys and Feyre finally won, if they ended up winning at all? I feel if she wrote every possibility for ACOWAR she’d never finish, because there’d always be more possibilities with every one she wrote.
        Same here, but I’m sure when this series does end there’ll be another one she’s written that will be even more epic (hard to imagine I know!) 😀

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      • It could have been way different. I don’t think, even with Feyre and Rhy’s powers combined, that they would have won without all of them there. I mean it wasn’t until Autumn showed up that they shut down the Faebane. Without Autumn they wouldn’t have even had their powers for long unless they figured out another way to get rid of it quickly. Not to mention the distraction all the other’s showing up provided so they could get to the Cauldron. True, too many possibility and it would never end. Which wouldn’t be a bad thing but well lol.
        There’s that. I honestly can’t what to see whatever she ends up writing next after both ACOTAR and ToG are done. I bet it’s going to be incredible. 😊

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      • I mean it was great seeing them all work together at the very end, because then it wasn’t just the High Lords but also the humans and Drakon. It was everyone coming together against Hybern which was great to read, but I still can’t stop myself from imagining all the other ways it could have gone. I guess it’s just a symptom of wanting more books! 🙂
        Whatever it is it’ll go straight to the top of my to-read and to-buy lists! 😀

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      • It really was. Bringing in all of the High Lords, the humans, and Drakon really brought things full circle in my opinion. Makes me wonder what exactly is going to happen in these novellas and what other peril she’s going to put these characters through. Definitely a symptom of wanting more books. 😂
        Same. I’ll drop everything to read whatever she writes next.

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      • There’s probably loads more peril she can pull out to create three more stories. If you think about it things with the humans on the other side of the wall and with the last queen haven’t been completely resolved so we need to learn more about them. 🙂

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  3. I have read it and while it wasn’t as good as ACOMAF I did like the ending! However I found by the time I got to this book I had outgrown SJM’s style of writing and the lack of tension in this book made it a dull read in the middle parts! However the beginning was so great and I loved how it started just where ACOMAF ended and I loved seeing the characters come together! The ending was also super satisfactory! So glad to hear you enjoyed it and lovely review!

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    • I have to agree about ACOMAF. While I did love this one a lot nothing will top that one for me just because I loved it so much lol. Sorry to hear you weren’t as into it and found some parts of it more dull. But I completely agree about the characters and the ending, all of that was fantastic! Perfect way to end their story. Thanks so much!! 😊♥

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  4. This is an awesome review, Melissa! I read ACOWAR and I was left with this intense, overwhelmed feeling because I really wanted to inhale the book and I read it in 3 sittings so someone please hold me.

    I just loved this one so much, even though I thought ACOMAF was still the strongest book in the trilogy, but I liked how things ended in ACOWAR.

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    • Thanks so much!! Even though it took me a week to read it I was so left with the same feeling. I actually went back and speed reread because I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It was such an intense read though! And so good. But yeah, I’m completely with you on ACOMAF being the strongest but the way things ended in ACOWAR was perfect. I love how she tied things up nicely for Feyre and Rhys while leaving us wondering about things for the other characters. 😊

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  5. OMG I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS. I absolutely love this series and am so glad you found this to be a great sequel. I can’t wait to read it for myself! Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous review! ❤

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  6. FANTASTIC review for this book, Melissa!! I absolutely adored this book and I’m so glad you loved it too, especially since ACOMAF is one of your favorite (if not your favorite) YA books. One of the things that amazes me about this series is Maas’ portrayal of the healthy and loving relationship between Feyre and Rhys. I’m head over heels in love with each of them as individuals. Feyre has grown so much since the first book and it was great seeing Rhys finally show his true self to the rest of the world. They are strong characters on their own and together as couple. They don’t lost any part of themselves when together and instead grow together as they support one another in all that they face. It’s just seriously one of the best relationships in YA/NA today I think. Also, I love how Maas expanded her world and introduced us to more of the courts. They were small glimpses but I think we’ll see more of them in the future books. I’m so happy that there were more diverse characters in this one and I love how Maas focused a bit more on the Inner Circle, especially Azriel and Mor. Love how their true selves came to the surface. The writing was much stronger in this one, particularly in the way she developed her characters. Lucien was a favorite in this one, but I’m also glad some other characters were offered redemption rather than death or punishment (you know who I’m talking about). I loved both Nesta and Elain in this one, especially Nesta. This book may have been a conclusion but it’s also the beginning to another story. I can’t wait to read more about Cassian and Nesta, as well as Azriel, Mor, Lucien, and the other characters!

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    • Thanks so much, Azia!! I’m so so so happy that you ended up loving ACOWAR too! 😁 And ACOMAF is definetly one of my all-time favorite YA books. That books is one I’ll never get tired for rereading but I do think ACOWAR matched up to it, at least for me. It surprised me in the best way. And I loved the little allusions to Snow White since I know this was a loose Snow White retelling. We had the 7 High Lords and then the mirror. Makes me wonder what the next one will be… Anyway! I completely agree about Feyre and Rhys, their relationship is incredible and one of the most well written and healthy ones I’ve read in YA/NA too. They really don’t lose any parts of themselves in their relationship and I love that because too often romances in fantasy fall into that trap. SJM knows how to write a fantastic romance that’s for sure. And it I was so happy to finally see Rhys show who he truly is to the world. That was the best thing! I also love how we learned there are a few others out there that might be playing the same game Rhys was (i.e. Helion and Eris, I really think there’s more to Eris’s story than what we know and I so hope it’s explored in future books.) And it was incredible that she expanded on the courts, wasn’t it? I’m so hoping we get to see more of Winter Court because Kallias and Viven were awesome. I need more of them! I agree about the diverse characters, that was one of my favorite aspects of this. I’m so glad there were more diverse characters. Same about Az and Mor! Seriously hoping for a book that focus on both because of everything revealed. Both of them deserve happy endings so much and I want them to have them. The writing we definitely stronger. And speaking of Lucien… Were you shocked by what was revealed or did it just make complete sense? My jaw dropped and then I thought back to ACOTAR and it made sense. I can’t wait to see where all of that goes! And I know which character your talking about (or characters? I feel like two were redeemed in a way). I love how she went the redemption route and honestly I was really surprised by a certain High Lord. It made me realize I should just stop making split judgments about SJM’s character because they’ll end up surprising me. 😂 Same and Nesta and Elain. I so can’t wait for their stories to continue. And definitely an ending and a beginning. I need the fourth book now! lol

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      • ACOWAR definitely matched up to ACOMAF! I think both books deserve all kinds of recognition! And I didn’t even know that there were some allusions to Snow White but now that you mention all those little things, I can definitely see it! What an extremely loose interpretation LOL. I hope the next one alludes to The Little Mermaid because I am trash for that story/movie. If faeries/elves exist, then mermaids should too LOL. Maas just continues to blow my mind with her portrayal of Rhys and Feyre’s relationship. I think it’s almost safe to say that they are probably one of the best, if not THE best, couples in YA/NA due to their individual character development. Rhy’s arc may have been subtle in this one, but his revelation to the rest of the courts was a big step for him and was not to be taken lightly. I’m so glad she didn’t gloss over it or forget that he was still seen as a villain in the eyes of his fellow Lords (and Ladies). And yes! It was great to know that Rhys might not have been the only one to be wearing a mask the entire time. I really liked Helion’s character and I’m really excited to see more of him in the next few books, especially now that it’s revealed he’s related to Lucien. And I agree, I think there’s more to Eris than was revealed. His arc doesn’t feel complete and I’m not sure we really know why he harmed Mor the way he did or why he saved Lucien in the past. I’m kind of hoping for some sort of redemption arc for him, or at least an opportunity to better understand him in the future installments. I loved the Winter court too! Especially Vivien. She was adorable. I loved her relationship with Mor. I just want Az and Mor to be happy. I hope they find “the one” sooner or later. And is it just me, or do you think there’s a chance Elain and Azriel might somehow end up together? I thought they had great chemistry. Lucien and Elain just don’t make any sense together haha. As for Lucien, are you talking about his pedigree/relationship to Helion? If so, then yeah that was kind of shocking haha. And two were definitely redeemed (our boys from the Spring Court). And I know right?! It’s so hard what to think of her characters because they think and behave in unpredictable ways. I didn’t know what to think of Tamlin more than half the time, to be honest. His behavior at the conference certainly didn’t help LOL. But in the end, it all worked out. And I just really want Nesta to be happy. Hope she gets her happy ending with you know who!!

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      • It would be amazing if the next ended up being a loose Little Mermaid retelling. I have a feeling the next book will end up being Nesta/Cassian’s book though and I’m not sure Little Mermaid would fit for them. (Is it terrible that I could so see a Traquin novella being a loose Little Mermaid retelling? 🙈 I think it’s those Summer Court vibes.) Same! SJM has definitely given me high standards for how romance should be done in fantasy. Her along with V.E. Schwab and Samantha Shannon. Those three should write a how to book for romance in fantasy and I would read it LOL. Feyre/Rhys are one of my top fantasy couples and given everything one of the best I’ve read in YA/NA so I could believe that. And YES! I love how she didn’t sweep the whole fact that everyone has seen Rhys as the villain under the rug. Even though everything at the High Lords meeting when he was talking with Kallias broke my heart. I’m excited to see more Helion too now that his connection to Lucien has been revealed. I feel like it’s going to be interesting seeing it all play out as neither Helion nor Lucien know they’re related. And I’m hoping for an Eris redemption arc too. I just got this sense that he thought he was doing what was best but then it turned into complete shit whenever everything happened with Mor. Honestly, I’m betting Eris will play a big role in Lucien’s book since I’m sure we’ll get a book for him. 😊 Same about Viven and Mor’s relationship! It seemed like they had one of the best friendships and I want to see more of it. YES! I swear we’re on the same train of thought with this book Azia because that’s exactly what I’ve been thinking about Az and Elain. I have a feeling they’ll end up together, I really think they might. SJM seemed to make hints toward that and then Lucien and Elain not being right for each other. I mean Lucien is an incredible character. He’s been my favorite since the first book and he’s such a great friend to Feyre but I don’t think he’s right for Elain. I’ve actually shipped Az and Elain since ACOMAF when they first met at Feyre’s old house. So I’m hoping! 😂😂 I didn’t know what to think of Tamlin for more than half the book too. I kept going back and forth. I do think he had some redemption in the end though. He was finally selfless in the fact that he put Feyre first and not his own want to have her or get back at her. I think it was a great step forward for him and it made me want a Tamlin book because I wouldn’t mind seeing his character fully redeemed. But I am with you on him and the High Lord meeting because I never hated him more than when he was running his mouth. I hope Nesta gets her happy ending too! 😊

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      • Well, if it’s Nesta and Cassian’s book next, then you’re definitely right, The Little Mermaid definitely wouldn’t match lol. And not weird at all. Those summer vibes scream mermaid LOL. A book by Schwab, Shannon, and SJM? Heck ya, I would devour that book lol.
        That conference with the High Lords was a really tough part to get through, what with Rhys and Feyre being so vulnerable and Tamlin being so horrible. I was on a roller coaster of emotion the entire time haha. I hope Helion and Lucien become really close so that SJM can explore a father/son relationship, which is something we don’t see much in her books (from what I’ve read so far). I definitely feel that way about Eris too. She seems to be a bit more forgiving, or rather, understanding to her characters this time around, so I have high hopes that he’ll be fleshed out a bit more. Maybe even redeemed, who knows? I’m excited to see how both he and Lucien grow as characters. While we have Feyre and Mor, it’d be great to see way more female friendships. I desperately want to see Nesta find a BFF, tbh. And thank goodness, I’m not the only one who sees the chemistry between Azriel and Elain. And same! I’d been wishing they would form a relationship after they first met in ACOMAF, too!! I love Lucien, but I just don’t think he and Elain make sense together. The way SJM redeemed Tamlin in this one was so well-done. He was still angry and distanced by the end, but his actions spoke louder than his words. I’d love a novel/novella for him, as well, just to see him fully recover from his experiences. He’s on the right path towards complete redemption so I’m more than ready to see that happen 🙂

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      • It makes me wonder what she’ll do a loose retelling of for Nesta and Cassian. So many possibilities! I just really love finding the little references and allusions. Right? That needs to happen. Someone needs to get Schwab, Shannon, and SJM to do an anthology or something or even a collab series. But ouch imagine the heartbreak. All three of them are great at breaking hearts. 😂
        Same! It was definitely a hard part to get through. But it was amazing when Feyre went all badass and Beron, wasn’t it? I was cheering! He completely deserved it. And that would be amazing if SJM really explored a father/son relationship with Helion and Lucien. I hope she does. That’s not something we see a lot of in fantasy in general I think. There’s usually that lack of parent/child relationships so it would be nice for SJM to include that aspect into her books. Me too, definitely excited to see how both Eris and Lucien grow as characters. Maybe even see them form a closer sibling relationship too. That would be nice. 😊
        YES! I would love for Nesta to find a BFF! That would be amazing and it needs to happen. Honestly, I hope her and Amren become BFFs because they seemed on that possible path in ACOWAR. I completely agree, I don’t think Lucien and Elain make sense either. I think that’s the only aspect I haven’t cared for in this whole series so far because it took Lucien getting a mate for him to want to go with Feyre when really I think he would have gone with her without that aspect after everything in the beginning of ACOWAR. Azriel and Elain just make sense where her an Lucien don’t in my opinion. Plus, it’ll be interesting seeing how having a character not end up with their mate works out. I’m really hoping we get a Tamlin novel/novella. There’s definitely a lot he still hasn’t come to terms with about everything that happened in the first book. Here’s to hoping we get one! 😊

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      • There really are! At this point I can’t really think of any Disney versions that fit, but The Snow Queen might actually work? Or maybe something from Greek, Roman, or Celtic mythos 😀 Who knows?
        I loved it when Feyre finally stood up to Beron. He was so unbearable before he got served his just desserts lol. And yeah, family dynamics that include the parents is something fantasy authors should definitely take the time to explore a bit more 🙂 Lucien and Eris forming a solid sibling relationship certainly would be nice!
        And 100% YES! I think Nesta and Amren would make an amazing BFF pair. They are so similar. Hard on the outside, but fairly soft and loyal on the inside 🙂 Since SJM brought up it was possible for a person (usually a female) to reject their mate but never gave an example, I’m thinking she might go down that route with Lucien and Elain. Also, it felt like Tamlin and Lucien’s relationship wasn’t entirely at an end, so I’m hoping to see more on the end! Ugh, I’m just so happy we were given these books. There’s always so much to talk about 😀

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      • It would be interesting if she went with The Snow Queen, I could see that too. But I would definitely love a Greek mythology one or something. I mean ACOMAF was a Hades/Persephone loose retelling which was awesome. 😁
        Right? And then after Feyre goes all powerful on him Rhys dissolves his seat and I was just like YES. 😂😂 Beron got pushed around a lot in ACOWAR. I loved it.
        They really are! I’m so hoping that in Nesta’s book they become BFFs. I actually can’t wait to see more of Amren in general after everything that happened in ACOWAR.
        That’s what I think too. The second Rhys told Feyre the bond could be rejected I was thinking that SJM might do that with Lucien and Elain. Would be interesting the explore since it doesn’t seem like something that happens a lot. I’m thinking we’ll definitely see more of Lucien and Tamlin’s friendship.
        Me too! I’m glad I gave into the hype last year and read them. Now I just need to give in and read Throne of Glass already. 😂

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      • Yeah, a Greek retelling would feel a bit more fitting for those two, to be honest LOL.
        Definitely one of the best parts in the book, though there were so many haha. And yes! Amren is a favorite of mine. Can’t wait to see what she’ll do with Nesta, her new body, and her relationship too!
        And please read ToG! I’ve only read up to the second book, but the second book is worth reading. I didn’t like ToG but Crown of Midnight definitely made up for it. Heir of Fire is on my list for this summer! 😀

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      • True, hopefully one that isn’t too tragic because I mean a lot of Greek tales are tragic. 😂
        And I’m actually starting Throne of Glass tonight. Ever since I read ACOWAR it’s been in the back of my mind and after my post-LoS contemporary binge I’m reading to dive into a giant fantasy series binge. ToG here I come! 😊

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      • Oh. Yeah, you’re right 😂 Greek tales usually ARE tragedies, so let’s hope she picks the few Greek stories that end well.
        Yay! You’ll have to let me know what you think 😀

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  7. I’ve been waiting to read your post till after I finished the book, which I finally did about half an hour ago! All of your comments about the book perfectly sum up my feelings towards the amazing writing/world I’ve just come out of. Feyre and Rhysand are my faves, without a doubt!

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  8. Must. Read. Now!!! Literally only thought going through my head now haha. It sounds so amazing, I absolutely can’t wait though I’n greatly considering rereading the first two or maybe just the second book before reading this one? But I’m not sure? I have the worst memory so maybe it would be helpful but at the same time I just really want to dive into this one haha. Lovely review Melissa!

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