Fantasy, Favorites, Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City #1) by Sarah J. Maas

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Synopsis:

Bound by blood.
Tempted by desire.
Unleashed by destiny.

Bryce Quinlan had the perfect life—working hard all day and partying all night—until a demon murdered her closest friends, leaving her bereft, wounded, and alone. When the accused is behind bars but the crimes start up again, Bryce finds herself at the heart of the investigation. She’ll do whatever it takes to avenge their deaths.

Hunt Athalar is a notorious Fallen angel, now enslaved to the Archangels he once attempted to overthrow. His brutal skills and incredible strength have been set to one purpose—to assassinate his boss’s enemies, no questions asked. But with a demon wreaking havoc in the city, he’s offered an irresistible deal: help Bryce find the murderer, and his freedom will be within reach.

As Bryce and Hunt dig deep into Crescent City’s underbelly, they discover a dark power that threatens everything and everyone they hold dear, and they find, in each other, a blazing passion—one that could set them both free, if they’d only let it.

With unforgettable characters, sizzling romance, and page-turning suspense, this richly inventive new fantasy series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas delves into the heartache of loss, the price of freedom—and the power of love.


🍁🍁🍁🍁🍁

“Through love, all is possible.”

MAJOR SPOILERS THROUGHOUT:
Where to begin? I had been waiting for this book since it was announced two years ago. I knew very little about it besides the fact that there would be shifters, Fae, and angels. I truly felt like Sarah had a direct line to my heart when I heard this because those are literally my top three favorite supernatural creatures in existence! And I didn’t need to hear any more after that!

To start, I will say that the first 200 pages or so of this book was overwhelming. There was a TON of information and, even though there is a map in the front of the book, it did not help me at all. I swear I need a thirty-page glossary to understand all of the places, creatures, people, government terms, and historical meanings of this book. For me, this book didn’t really pick up until after the first 400 pages. As mentioned above, the first half seemed extremely info-dumpy and there was a bunch of plot set up stuff happening. While Bryce and Hunt were going through with their investigation and making progress, I still felt like the overall plot wasn’t getting anywhere. I was really concerned that I wasn’t going to like this book because of this.

Luckily, the second half the book was phenomenally better. The plot was moving at a much faster pace, the character connections and relationships that Sarah is known for started to shine, and the plot twists started to unfold left and right. Tears were streaming down my face and I didn’t even turn over to grab a tissue to wipe them because I didn’t want to put the book down! I fell absolutely in love with this story and I saw everything that makes Sarah my favorite author come out. It was an emotional roller coaster but I am so happy that I picked this book up.

Bryce- Bryce is my girl!!! Her character is so relatable at the beginning of the story and watching her develop over the course of this one book was simply magical. Her dedication and never ending loyalty to her friends and family constantly brought tears to my eyes and I am so excited to see where her character will go from here.

Hunt- I’m not gonna lie, it took me a bit to warm up to Hunt. He just wasn’t grabbing me quite as much as some of the other characters in this book. I have heard people say he is a mixture of Rhys and Rowan from Sarah’s other series and I would completely agree with that. He has Rowan’s demeanor with Rhysand’s back story which made him an interesting character to follow. By the end of this book, I was completely in love with his character and I adored the arc that he went through. It was so beautiful!

Dannika & Her Pack- How is it that these characters were only physically involved in the story for five chapters, yet I love them so much and it hurt so bad when they died? I think this is a true testament to Sarah’s power as an author because Dannika and her pack just felt like any other character to me. I love them just as much as I love Bryce or Hunt and I cried at many different points in the book when they were mentioned.

Ruhn- God, I love Ruhn. He was everything I wanted his character to be and I feel like we’ve only scratched the surface for him. He did play a major role in this book, but I feel like his character is only going to blossom more over the course of the next installments. I am DYING to see where his story is going and to see this power struggle with his father come to a head.

Syrinx- This little chimera has my whole heart and is undoubtably my favorite character in this book. You have no idea how close I came to hyperventilating when Syrinx fell in that cage. I had tears rolling down my face and I swore that if he died, I wouldn’t read another SJM book.

Lehabah- This sweet little fire sprite had my whole heart it isn’t even funny. I just sobbed when she sacrificed herself and a part of me still can’t believe that she is gone. She became one of my favorite characters in such a short time and her loss will definitely be felt in the future installments.

Fury & Juniper- Juniper was sweet, and I liked her, but I am definitely more intrigued by Fury. She reminds me a lot of Amren and I need to know more about her! While I really liked these two, I felt like they didn’t play as big of a role as they could have. I think their character development and their storyline is going come into play in the future books more than they did in this one.

Hypaxia- I guessed the Hypaxia plot twist almost immediately. As soon as she met Ruhn and didn’t say her name, I knew. I loved what she did for Hunt and I know she will be one of Bryce’s biggest allies in the future installments. Is it wrong that I already ship her and Ruhn lol?

Micah- I did not see the Micah twist coming AT ALL. To be honest, I thought that he was more slated to be a love interest than a villain. I couldn’t have been more wrong lol. Well I’m happy he’s dead now.

Sandriel- I swear I’m never felt so much satisfaction as the moment that Hunt killed her. God, I couldn’t stand her. She gave me severe Amarantha vibes and I am SOOO happy that she is out of the picture now.

Jesiba- I’m not sure how I feel about Jesiba yet. Her treatment of Bryce throughout this book rubbed me the wrong way, but I am also really intrigued by her character. I want to learn more about her and her back story so bad!

Aidas- Is it wrong that he is a Prince of Hel, but I like him already? Like I don’t know if he is evil yet, but he is certainly morally grey. I loved that brief interaction between him, Bryce, and Hunt and I’m dying for more. That epilogue between him and Jesiba has me so hyped to find out what will happen next, it’s not even funny.

Overall, I highly enjoyed this book. There are so many characters and plot points that I could just go on and on forever about them so unfortunately I only hit on the major ones for this review. I am sure that all of the others will come up in my future reviews when they all become more critical to the story. And have no doubt, I will definitely be reading the next book! Is it 2021 yet???


Other Books in the Series:

Book Two ~ To Be Released

Book Three ~ To Be Released

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