Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3) by Sarah J. Maas

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Published: May 2nd 2017 by Bloomsbury Childrens Books
Rating: 4 out of 5

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Available from:

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Synopsis:
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.

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Review:
There are a lot of conflicting reviews flying around about this book so without further ado, I'll throw my review to the bag. This might be a long one!

YES! THERE MAY BE SPOILERS - IT'S A REVIEW!

Feyre is doing what she can to upset the Spring court. She's learning what she can from Ianthe, Lucien and Tamlin, who's now (almost) freely giving her knowledge of the Hybern contingent. Within days they have visitors. Jurian and the nephew and niece of the King of Hybern arrive. They want information about the wall, which, if you remember, can only be brought down by the magic of the cauldron. Feyre and Lucien escort them on several occasions to the holes previously made, to find out if they're weak spots. Several things happen during this time - Feyre's headaches because she's using a lot of magic, Feyre's closeness to Lucien, and we learn how despicable the nephew and niece are. Feyre also works to undermine Tamlin's hold over his own troops as well as Ianthe's credibility as priestess.

One thing leads to another and Feyre escapes. Lucien, thanks to his magic eye, has guessed that Feyre isn't staying and insists he comes too. He wants to see Elain. But those headaches Feyre's been having are the result of faebane, a drug which dampens magical abilities. Feyre and Lucien have to escape the hard way. On foot. They come close to being captured but eventually get rescued by Cassian and Azriel.

Back at the Night Court, Feyre learns that her sisters have changed. They've developed their own mystical abilities. Nesta, the sour, not so kind sister, has an even more edgy side to her. Elain simply spouts nonsense. Elain is also not recovering as much as Feyre would like.

With the old gang from the previous book Feyre and Rhys start plotting against Hybern knowing that Spring court has now fallen apart thanks to Feyre's undoing.

The book flips back and forth from the top of the island to the bottom, then back into the middle then sideways and so on. Alliances are made, destroyed, and amicable hatred swarms the other courts. The depth of the High Lords conflict or alliance is written well. Needless to say there's a lot of story happening during these times, maybe a little too much, but it does fill in all the gaps and create a solid building block for future stories.

Feyre, I think, is the most changed in all of this. At the end of Mist and Fury she proves she's powerful. At the end of this book I don't think anyone rivals her, not even Rhys. Yes, he's got his tricks of the trade going on which she'll no doubt learn over time but if there was any future story then Feyre would probably be Queen of Prythia.

A Court of Wings and Ruin is another long book. If you're thinking all the characters are in play at the end of A Court of Mist and Fury then you'll have to reassess that. They aren't big, main character parts but the names are something you have to remember and with so many similar sounding names (i.e. the High Lords) it does get a little confusing at times.

The Drakon, Miryam, Jurian triangle plays a part in this too. One thing you'll find with this book is you do end up reading more 'little stories' inside this big one. I think I counted three but there may have been more. Little moral talesare fine but they did go on a bit and I did skim.

The High Lords came across as weaker in stature than I expected. I liked Tarquin in the ACOMAF, but some of the other High Lords just came across as flaky. Not as big or an imposing threat to Hybern or anyone. Maybe that's why Rhys and his court come across as being so powerful. We know Rhys IS the most powerful High Lord ever, and Feyre comes up in the standards of gift abilities.

 I was disappointed with the 'bond' lore of this book. Tamlin doesn't have a big part in this story. He's portrayed more as a brooding, singular guy who has nothing to do with his spare time that be gloomy about losing Feyre. His attitude at the alliance meeting was just plain nasty, and also a little immature. I would have liked to learn he'd found a 'bond' with someone and had a happy ending. Also unresolved is Lucien and Elain's story, although she does sort of warm to him towards the end.(Future story#1? Also, Lucien's heritage was brought up and left hanging.)

Amren's little gig at the end was a nice closure but it left me thinking about the other 'creature' characters. The bone carver, the weaver and a new being come back into the story, some have endings and some don't. But it still didn't answer any questions about this 'rip' that happened between worlds a few thousand years ago. Could the cauldron have been un-made a previous time and caused the rip? If so, did any 'nasties' get through this time?

Same-sex relationships seem to be the order of the day too. With a surprising twist at the end for Mor, and subsequent lack of closure for Azriel (Future story #2? and include into that Nesta and Cassian which also develops but nothing 'wow' happened except for a small kiss before Nesta, before she, once again, shuns everyone.)

To bring everything together (and I've tried to write this without too many spoilers) I would say it's a good ending to the series of Feyre and Rhys. It isn't a great ending. There are still lots of unresolved issued and I've only picked out a few. If the first book was the scene setting and Feyre's transformation, and the second book was the love story, then this one is the battle--there's a lot of battle-- and closing off of the story. In my honest opinion this series could have continued to four book and I think I'd have preferred that to see the outcome to all the main characters rather than leave them all mid flight. After finishing I also didn't have that 'wow' factor as I did at the end of book 2. I think some people will be disappointed.

There are more stories to come and maybe that's Ms Maas's trick, to keep us all guessing!

-CBx

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About the Author
Sarah J. Maas is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Throne of Glass series and A Court of Thorns and Roses series, as well as a USA Today and international bestselling author. Sarah wrote the first incarnation of the Throne of Glass series when she was just sixteen, and it has now sold in thirty-five languages. A New York native, Sarah currently lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and dog.

She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Hamilton College in 2008 with a degree in Creative Writing and a minor in Religious Studies.
In 2018, DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. has partnered with Random House Books for Young Readers to bring some of the most iconic comic book characters to life in the form of YA novels. Sarah will be writing Catwoman.

You can find Sarah J. Maas here:


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