Unpopular Opinion: I did not like A Court of Frost and Starlight

Title: A Court of Frost and Starlight
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Pages: 229 pages
Release Date: May 1st, 2018
Source: Hardcover
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Young/New Adult
Rating: 2.5 stars
Hope warms the coldest night.

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve.

Yet even the festive atmosphere can't keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated--scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.

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I wanted to like A Court of Frost of Starlight, but I'm fairly certain I'm at the point where I'll be hesitant about purchasing another Sarah J. Maas novel. Although I was abroad when ACOFAS was released, I was luckily near a Waterstones Bookstore and was able to obtain a copy on release day. But when I started reading it on the plane the next morning, I wasn't entirely sure if it was the story I had been waiting so eagerly for.

To be frank, ACOFAS was disappointing in the way that not only was there hardly any plot, but it read so much like a piece of fanfiction that I rolled my eyes more times than there were even number of pages. The "story" takes place months after the events of ACOWAR, during the Winter Solstice, which also happens to be Feyre's birthday. Our beloved characters spend the majority of the book shopping for gifts, being unsure of what to shop for, and finally opening the presents they received from each other.  There is a small side story that dives a bit into Cassian's past and another pertaining to reaching out to Nesta. But otherwise, it was like a classic Hallmark Christmas movie featuring the Inner Circle and friends (minus conflict).

As a fluffy read to purely kill time, ACOFAS could have been enjoyable. But throughout the read I couldn't help but wonder where the intrigue and suspense from a "classic" Sarah J. Maas story had gone. For years, her stories have always had a way of slipping beneath my mind and keeping me on my toes until the final page. And despite the enormous lengths of some of her work, there was never a second where I could let out my breath. With ACOFAS, I only managed to finish it while reading on my multiple flights last month. Needless to say, this book hardly held on to my attention.

But I wouldn't have been quite so bothered, had this novella been more about the underlying story (the one with Nesta and the big reveal) and less about the sexual tension between Feyre and Rhysand that was crystal clear on every. other. page. Not to mention the sexual tension between all the ships in this book. Is sex the only thing the most powerful people in the Night Court seem to think about during their gatherings and free time? And I'm pretty sure I would lose my mind if I ever heard another bloody mention of the word MATE. and...gentlemales ? ...question mark ?

Overall, this book makes me quite anxious about the upcoming Kingdom of Ash and the spin off trilogy to the ACOTAR series. If the bulk of Kingdom of Ash is anything like ACOFAS, I might just read the final chapter of it at a bookstore and wave goodbye to Sarah J. Maas books for good. It's said to be nearly 1000 pages and I probably won't be surprised if the word 'mate' makes an appearance a minimum of 800 times.

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