What: A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses #2) by Sarah J. Maas
Who: Bloomsbury Childrens Books
When: May 3rd 2016
How: A copy of this novel was provided by Bloomsbury Australia for review.
Feyre is immortal.
After rescuing her lover Tamlin from a wicked Faerie Queen, she returns to the Spring Court possessing the powers of the High Fae. But Feyre cannot forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people – nor the bargain she made with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court.
As Feyre is drawn ever deeper into Rhysand’s dark web of politics and passion, war is looming and an evil far greater than any queen threatens to destroy everything Feyre has fought for. She must confront her past, embrace her gifts and decide her fate.
She must surrender her heart to heal a world torn in two.
I really loved A Court of Thorns and Roses. It was a book I enjoyed pretty thoroughly, and I was incredibly excited to read its sequel, A Court of Mist and Fury. Unfortunately, that excitement was somewhat misplaced. There were two main problems I had with A Court of Mist and Fury:
1) Everyone changed.
I really liked Tamlin in ACoTaR. He was a character that was complex and caring and was quite the epitome of the character he was based off. So to enter A Court of Mist and Fury and have Tamlin completely changed as a character was pretty darn disappointing. All of a sudden, Tamlin is the villain of the story. He’s controlling and manipulative, and Feyre is, quite out of the blue, not in love with him anymore because of this.
Lucien. Lucien was my favourite male character in ACoTaR. He was sassy and a good friend to Feyre. In A Court of Mist and Fury, there was none of that. He was weak. He bowed to Tamlin’s every wish. He wasn’t much of a friend to Feyre. My favourite character was, in a word, ruined.
Rhysand. I adored Rhysand in ACoTaR, problems and all. But he went from broody bad boy to knight in shining armour incredibly quickly. Instead of being charming to get what he wants, he is simply charming. Instead of being snarky to manipulate Feyre, he is just snarky. I loved Rhysand again in this novel, but I also felt like the excuses given for why he acted the way he did in the previous book were kind of flimsy.
Feyre. Dear god above. I couldn’t stand her in this book. I wanted to DNF when I was about fifty pages in. In fact, I only really started to enjoy it when I was OVER THREE HUNDRED PAGES in. That is a long time to wait before a book starts to become interesting. I liked Feyre’s weaknesses and strengths in the last book. I liked that she wasn’t closed off to feeling things, and that she had her downfalls. In A Court of Mist and Fury the aspects of her personality and character that I had liked so much in ACoTaR were pretty much completely erased.
She didn’t like to paint anymore (apparently because she feared the colour red. And then didn’t fear it later on. With no journey or explanation to how that colour lost its power over her). She learned to read after one lesson (apparently Feyre is some kind of genius). She became so closed off and cold-hearted that she couldn’t even smile or laugh anymore (a quote about a laugh almost making its way out of her shattered soul had me almost snorting at the drama of it all). She became a fighter after four weeks of training with one person (again: genius). All in all … she pretty much became a carbon copy of Celaena. The person with all the power, and with the weight and wellbeing of the world resting on her tiny little shoulders (Christ, the constant mentions of how skinny she was were blood boiling).
2) There was literally no diversity. At all.
There were four new characters introduced in A Court of Mist and Fury, all of which played an integral role in the story. They were in Rhysand’s inner court, and in almost every chapter after they were introduced: Amren, Cassian, Morrigan, and Azriel.
Every single one of them is white. Every darn one. This was the perfect opportunity to introduce some racial diversity into this series – with Lucien and Tamlin and Feyre and Rhys all being glaringly white characters. But the opportunity to include racially diverse characters was not taken, and now all eight characters are white. Racial diversity? Non-existent.
Every single one of them is straight. Every darn one. Cassian and Azriel are both in love with Morrigan. Amren mentions sex with males. This was the perfect opportunity to introduce some LGBTQIA+ characters into this series – with Lucien and Tamlin and Feyre and Rhys all being glaringly straight and cisgender characters. Why weren’t Cassian and Azriel in love with each other? Or perhaps Morrigan and Amren? Why did it have to be two guys in love with one girl? Why couldn’t one of them be sexually fluid? Or genderfluid? Why, in a world that is a fantasy, straight and cisgender are the defaults? Why is the mating bond between a man and a woman? Because apparently straight and cisgender are the only sexual orientation and gender identity that exist in the world of this series. The opportunity to include LGBTQIA+ characters was not taken, and now all eight characters are straight and cisgender. LGBTQIA+ diversity? Non-existent.
Overall, I was pretty disappointed in A Court of Mist and Fury. There were aspects I did like, for example: my ship sailed, and there was lots of magic and awesome scenes involving that magic. I liked the quest aspect. I liked Rhysand a lot. But I can’t get over the two problems I wrote about. I’m not on board with changing characters to fit a story, and I can hardly stomach the complete and utter void of any diversity in this series.
© 2016, Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity. All rights reserved.