Kicking off with pace, protagonist Feyre is introduced while hunting in order to fend for her family. After stumbling across a wolf she also believes to be faerie she, despite knowing the consequences, fires an ashen arrow, killing the beast.
Ironically, it’s here that the narrative slows down somewhat. Upon killing the faerie, his ruler appears to claim Feyre; offering her the option of either a slow, painful death or a life of freedom and luxury living in his kingdom.
Here, you learn more about Feyre – though never the correct pronunciation of her name – in the process determining her flaws and likeability. At times, an almost teen-like attitude slips through – as evidenced in instances when she proclaims to hate feeling like a disobedient child, despite sneaking into an event she was told to avoid, but most will let moments like this slide in favour of her independence and bravery.
It’s no spoiler to reveal she falls for her captor Tamlin and, as the couple, along with his wingman Lucien, share extravagant meals and in-jokes, you may begin to wonder if there could be much more to the remaining half of the book.
Fortunately, it turns out that there is. When the – admittedly far-fetched – cure to the curse over the Spring Court is revealed, Feyre embarks on a frantic mission to tackle antagonist, Amarantha.
Although proving to be somewhat theatrical in nature with regards to her malice, scenes of gore and torture aren’t spared here, and readers will feel her pain as she is put through hell in order to free Tamlin.
The conclusion is a funny one, featuring a transformation that took the Twilight four books to make, but one that doesn’t really end on a significant enough cliff-hanger to make us think that this lends itself to a second instalment, despite the fact that this is apparently the first part of a trilogy.
Thanks to the pace pick-up in the book’s final half, however, there’s a good chance that you might be persuaded to proceed to the next instalment. In this regard at least, A Court Of Thorns And Roses succeeds.