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A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas- Book Review

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas- Book Review

“The first time I saw that look on your face, you were still human. Still human, and I nearly went to my knees before you.”

Name: A Court of Silver Flames

Author: Sarah J Maas

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Genre: Romantic Fantasy, High Fantasy

Release date: 16 February 2021

ABOUT THE BOOK

A Court of Silver Flames is a spin-off of the original A Court of Thorns and Roses series. Nesta Archeron has always been prickly- proud, swift to anger, and slow to forgive. And since the war, since being made High Fae against her will, she has struggled to forget the horrors she endured and find a place for herself within the strange and deadly Night Court. The person who ignites her temper more than any other is Cassian- the battle-scarred winged warrior who is there at Nesta’s every turn but her temper isn’t the only thing Cassian ignites, and when they are forced to train in battle together- sparks become flame. As the threat of war casts its shadow over them once again, Nesta and Cassian must fight monsters from within and without if they are to stand a chance of halting the enemies for good. But the ultimate risk will be searching for acceptance and healing- in each other’s arms 

REVIEW

The book is divided into 4 parts and this review highlights what each part contributed to the book. There will hardly be a reader who has not heard of Sarah J Maas. Those who are familiar with her books know how incredible a writer she is. A Court of Silver Flames is no exception to the prowess of her work. However, at certain places it is also quite problematic.

Part I solely concentrates on Nesta and Cassian. They are the central characters. The beginning chapters are like reading an erotica. Not every reader will enjoy reading explicit sexual experiences, especially not in every second paragraph. I could do with 10 to 20 pages less of it and it wouldn’t have made an ounce of difference to the story. The casual sarcastic banter of the Night Court, which appealed to the readers in the original ACOTAR series is missing. The first part has a maddeningly slow pace. The relationship between Feyre and Cassian is heartwarming- like a proper younger brother-elder sister duo even though Cassian is centuries older than Feyre. The ACOTAR series though written through the POV of Feyre and Rhysand had enough story time allotted to other characters and hence the books came together as a whole package; A Court of Silver Flames has too much of Nesta and Cassian, making it a two character story.  

The only semblance of normalcy in the story began in Part II. The camaraderie between Nesta, Gwen, and Emerie over their love for books is a delightful respite from all the smuttiness of part I. The story finally picks up; the plot starts to unfold as the focus moves from Nesta and Cassian to everyone and everything else. An unnecessary erotica turns into the fantasy that it should have been and by the end of Part 2 the book was able grab my undivided attention. It felt like now I was reading SJM’s work 

Part 3 should have been the start of this book. It’s a phenomenal tale right there. It is engrossing and turning the page was a delight because even though the storyline became predictable, it did not dampen the experience. The writing is cheesy with cliché dialogues but beautiful nevertheless.

Since Part 4 is the last part of the book it only goes to say the pace picks up and still it does not feel rushed or hurried. The only part that feels like I am actually reading what I expected to read. The climax at Ramiel mountain was expected I only wish it was a little prolonged. 

The ending was beautiful and perfect. The initial pages and the drag had disappointed me and I was blind to believe that I would not love it as much as I loved the previous books but I was so damn wrong. The end came exaggerated and predictable but it was good nevertheless. The historical descriptions of the book predates to a much older era which makes the spin-off story all the more interesting. The limited appearance of Morgan and Elaine was a bit dissatisfying. I wish there was more of the lively banter between the inner circle of the Night Court. Nesta’s healing journey is nothing short of enchanting- her trauma vivid and her resolve like cracked steel through which there is a glimpse of the fragile heart within. For me, personally, the most touching aspect of the book was Nesta’s relationship with the House; sheer perfection and heart-rending. I have never read anything so ingenious.

There are a lot of storylines that remain open- like that of Lucian and Elaine,  what lies in Tamlin’s future, the deal with Morgan and Eris (something that the author has hinted in the book but not clearly explained), we need more of Azriel and his future too; if the characters of a book become as close to the heart as ACOTAR series has bought them to us, then one is bound to be curious about what happens in their life till eternity. Plus, there is a lot left unsaid about Koschei and his plans, the human queens, Vassa and Jurian etc- There’s still a lot to be covered which makes me fervent in wishing that the series has not yet ended. 

The story building to the finale was a cliché. One must keep in mind that in SJM’s books, more than the story, the way it is written takes the upper hand. I am curious to see how SJM tops A Court of Silver Flames in the upcoming books, if any.

ACOFS is devastatingly beautiful with audaciously brave and bold female protagonists. SJM’s characters leave a mark long after the last page is turned. 

[ratings]

LitGleam Rating- 4/5

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