NOTE: THIS REVIEW IS SPOILER FREE. A FULL REVIEW WILL BE POSTED ON THURSDAY MAY 11TH.
A Court of Wings and Ruin is the third installment in Sarah J Maas’ wildly popular series, which began with A Court of Thorns and Roses, followed by A Court of Mist and Fury. Released on May 2nd, 2017, A Court of Wings and Ruin is easily among the list of most anticipated Young Adult releases this year, and for good reason!
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. In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times and USA Today 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.
A Court of Wings and Ruin certainly had a lot to live up to – its predecessor, A Court of Mist and Fury, was easily my favourite book of 2016, if not my favourite book in recent memory. And while A Court of Mist and Fury remains my favourite book in this series, Sarah J Maas delivered yet again, giving readers a beautifully written and wonderfully executed third installment to a beloved story.
There’s something for everyone in this books – romance, action, intrigue, betrayal and deception. And to be honest, I never really doubted that Sarah J Maas would deliver on the romance – she’s never failed in that regard in the past – but she also succeeded in developing intricate friendships, and examined complex bonds within the Inner Court and within Feyre’s family. Some of the more platonic relationships in this story actually wound up being my favourite, and they added a whole new layer of complexity and emotions to the story that made this book even better. That being said, there was a bit less of the intense romance (like what was seen in A Court of Mist and Fury) – instead, the romance was sprinkled throughout the story, with no one chapter or portion of the story being more loaded than the others.
So, what about the action, betrayal, intrigue and deception? Since this book’s acronym is (quite ominously) ACOWAR, and readers were promised that the earth would be painted red in the certain conflict, readers certainly expected action – and Sarah J Maas delivered on her promise by providing plenty of action through skirmishes, battles, and yes, full blown war. She may have even on-upped the battle at the end of Empire of Storms, which was quite impressive. Turning the attention to the betrayal, intrigue and deception portion of the story, with Feyre acting as a spy to gather what information she can from the Spring Court, readers also expected a fair amount of clandestine behaviour and back-stabbing. And right off the bat, readers certainly won’t be disappointed. Maas made sure to include plenty of deception, including some shady daemati mind tricks, out right betrayal, and some heart-breaking treachery that will leave readers reeling.
Now, one thing that I really loved about A Court of Wings and Ruin were Feyre’s unlikely allies – they’re not a sudden solution to the problems facing Prythian (in fact, they may be a whole new problem), but their participation in the impending war and other conflicts was very rewarding and entertaining.
A Court of Wings and Ruin is the type of book you’ll want to read slowly, to savor it and draw it out, but it’s also the type of book you won’t want to put down. Sarah J Maas lived up to the hype, delivering a story that is both engaging and heartbreaking – readers will find themselves crying, cheering, and maybe even throwing their book as they progress through the story, because Maas has once again crafted a masterpiece sure to invoke a plethora of emotions (5/5).