Before you read any further, this review will be filled with spoilers. It’s not really a review as much as it is a discussion of my thoughts on this latest book by SJM. It’s my way of sorting through my emotions and hopefully find some who are just as eager to finally talk about this book we all waited for with baited breath.
I’m writing this at 12:15 pm, 15th May 2017 – I received my physical copy of ACOWAR before 8 am this morning. I gave myself a few hours to digest what I had read and to gather my thoughts so that this post will make sense.
Full disclosure: I read most of this book in epub format while I waited for my physical copy to arrive. I only read the last 100 pages this morning.
Let me just say, I absolutely adored ACOMAF. I read it for the fifth time last week and I am still amazed at how much I love that story. It managed to maintain the suspense and evoke the raw emotion that it did when I read it the first time. Somehow it just doesn’t get old…
Of course, the wait for ACOWAR was torture and I couldn’t imagine the devastation SJM was going to throw our way… So it kills me to say that it wasn’t all that I’d hope for and I have quite a few qualms about this third book in the ACOTAR series. Let me break it down:
***NOTE: SPOILERS AHEAD***
FEYRE – She really annoyed me in this book; for a whole bunch of reasons; mostly because she was so unbelievably arrogant. I mean here she waltzes into this new world and makes a little home for herself in all of 2 minutes, and already she thinks she knows best for everyone. Already she thinks she understands a fraction of what the others have been through in all their decades of enduring wars and barely surviving the loss of loved ones. It unnerved me that she thought she knew everything and felt that she had a place in telling others what to do.
MOR – Damn it, Mor is Rhys’s THIRD in command!!! How is it that we never got to see the full extent of her powers?? I expected so much… well, MORE!!! And yes, that pun was definitely intended.
NESTA – I cannot stand Nesta. I mean there were a few moments when I thought she’ll come around but then it just withered and disappeared and it makes me angry because I just don’t get her deal! She’s not a team player, she still doesn’t take responsibility for treating Feyre like total crap as a child, and basically, she just thinks she’s better than everyone else. I don’t know what exactly SJM has planned for this character but so far I am not a fan of hers and I have zero connection to her other than hoping she’ll be a match for Cassian.
AMREN – The whole Amren story at the end was such a letdown for me. I mean I get that she saved the day and all but I feel like the scene wasn’t described well enough for me to fully appreciate the gravity of what happened. Amren was supposedly a force to be reckoned with; she was supposed to be this untameable, unknown that would change things irrevocably. I just didn’t feel it while reading and that was super disappointing. Oh, and another thing – I was under the impression that Amren wanted to be released from her Fae form, so I’m a little confused by her return. Or am I missing something over here? Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy that she’s alive and well; but I just thought it was a little convenient that they managed to get her back the way they did.
RHYSAND – I was lead to believe that ACOWAR was going to be told from both Rhys and Feyre’s POV… I’m sorry, but two chapters told from Rhysand’s perspective just wasn’t enough for me. Oh, and the whole thing where Rhys dies only to be brought back a full 3 seconds later was just so unimaginative… I mean his death would’ve destroyed me, there’s no doubt about it, but I thought that whole scenario was just pointless. Because seriously, where would his character be killed off??
Okay, I’m really starting to feel like a troll right now but what was with all those gooey, over the top “let’s hold hands in a circle and pour our hearts out” family moments??? It felt so forced and unnatural to me, which SUCKED because the Inner Circle parts were my favourites in ACOMAF and I wanted more than anything to learn about these characters in a neutral setting.
Everything was tied together too perfectly. It felt wayyyy too sappy and happily-ever-afterish. I thought SJM listened to her fans a bit too much so the book felt predictable. There was only one time where I felt genuinely shocked by what was happening, which is not something I can say about her newer books. In fact, those last 100 pages were a bit too similar to Empire of Storms for my taste. I’m disappointed, and I absolutely cannot stand feeling this way because I love these characters so darn much, and I just wanted more for them…
Oh, and one last thing – it was WAY TOO SHORT!!!
Despite all the negativity written above, there were some things that I really enjoyed about the book as well:
I loved that we got some answers about the dynamic between Azriel, Mor and Cassian. I honestly never expected Mor’s secret but it makes a whole lot of sense now. Although, now that the whole Mor and Azriel ship has sunk, it makes me wonder what will happen to him. Personally, I wouldn’t mind Elain and Azriel together because he freaking needs someone already!! Speaking of Azriel, I loved getting to know him better and I feel connected to his character even more now that I’ve seen this different side to him.
Rhys turning into his full beast form was freaking EPIC! It was what I’ve been waiting for in this book and I’m super thrilled that we finally got to “see” him in that state. All the references made in ACOMAF about him being the most powerful high lord in history felt well and truly deserved.
The world-building in this book was fantastic! I loved that SJM took the time to describe the different courts and high lords in such detail because I was really looking forward to learning more about the rest of the territories.
When I reached the end of the book I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that the ACOTAR series will be continuing in 2018. I got the idea that ACOWAR was going to be the last book in the main series, and that more books will be released focusing on other characters. Now I’m not so sure… But I’m looking forward to reading the next instalment, if only to salvage what I felt was lacking in this latest book.
Goodreads rating: 4.2/5 stars
What did you think of ACOWAR? Let me know, I’d love to discuss further!!