Dreamy & Co. Unboxings, Fantasy, Favorites

UNBOXING: May Dreamy & Co. “To Whatever End” Box

Hello Lovelies! I’m back with an unboxing from one of my favorite companies, Dreamy & Co. Unlike most book boxes, Dreamy doesn’t include a book, but instead has a item only box centered around one fandom. In the case of this month, the box was centered around Throne of Glass, which naturally was a much have box for me.


The Items:

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Pin

Artist/Supplier Credits:

Double-Sided Sturdy Print (Aelin & Rowan Print) – @emeliesnath_art

Double-Sided Square (Manon/Thirteen) Print – @nessiarts

Enamel Pin – @azura.arts

Pin Banner – @eviebookish

Double Sided Woodmark, Double-Sided Sturdy Bookmark, & Wooden Art – @dreamyandco

2 oz Candle – @flickthewick


Overall, I enjoyed this box! The pin banner is the most beautiful one I have ever seen and the pin is gorgeous! I’m not gonna lie, the Rowan face on the print is kind of weird, but I enjoyed this box besides that. Dreamy & Co. blew me away, as usual!

~ Autumn 💕

Discussions, Fantasy, Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: A Court of Silver Flames (A Court of Thorns and Roses #4) by Sarah J. Maas

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Synopsis:

Nesta Archeron has always been prickly-proud, swift to anger, and slow to forgive. And ever since being forced into the Cauldron and becoming High Fae against her will, she’s struggled to find a place for herself within the strange, deadly world she inhabits. Worse, she can’t seem to move past the horrors of the war with Hybern and all she lost in it.

The one person who ignites her temper more than any other is Cassian, the battle-scarred warrior whose position in Rhysand and Feyre’s Night Court keeps him constantly in Nesta’s orbit. But her temper isn’t the only thing Cassian ignites. The fire between them is undeniable, and only burns hotter as they are forced into close quarters with each other.

Meanwhile, the treacherous human queens who returned to the Continent during the last war have forged a dangerous new alliance, threatening the fragile peace that has settled over the realms. And the key to halting them might very well rely on Cassian and Nesta facing their haunting pasts.

Against the sweeping backdrop of a world seared by war and plagued with uncertainty, Nesta and Cassian battle monsters from within and without as they search for acceptance-and healing-in each other’s arms.


2.5 🍁s

MAJOR SPOILERS THROUGHOUT

Okay… So I would like to preface this review by saying that I am not jumping on the Sarah J. Maas or ACOSF hate train. This review is coming from someone who has been a SJM fan for five years and has been dying for Nessian’s book for four of those. This review comes from a place of genuine disappointment. All of my opinions were formed from reading the book itself and I didn’t have any outside influences affecting that.

Now that that is out of the way… this book was disappointing. Very disappointing. The plot lacked Sarah’s usual twists and flair, the romance felt rushed and lacked development, but probably the most disappointing of all… The characters were utter shells of themselves. Some of their actions were completely out of character and some of the things that endeared them to me were missing from this book entirely. This book felt like a fan fiction of ACOTAR. If I didn’t know any better, I would say that none of this book felt like Sarah’s writing at all.

Maybe my feelings of this book are all tied to waiting so long for it. Maybe it’s because I went in expecting this to be as great as ACOMAF… The bottom line is that it didn’t cut it. And it’s not like Sarah hasn’t made a masterpiece in the past. The elements were all there for the making of a great book… A hate-to-love romance, characters with traumas and dark pasts, a complex world filled with different creatures and politics, an interesting villain… Yet somehow, this book turned all of those things into the worst forms of themselves.

Cassian and Nesta’s development, separately and together, was an utter disaster. And I’m sorry, after witnessing what Sarah did in ACOMAF, I know she can write a damn good romance with two characters healing from their past traumas. Nesta’s trauma, we barely scratched the surface on. Yeah she addressed her feelings on her dad… But what about those thousand Illyrians whose deaths she blames herself for? It was mentioned but she didn’t come to terms with it. What about her mother’s clearly abusive behavior? Never acknowledged. What about the fact that she was sexually assaulted? Brushed over and used when it was convenient. And Cassian’s traumas? Not in the picture at all. He spoke about them a couple times to make Nesta feel better, sure, but did he work on them or grow from them at all? Absolutely not.

The Nessian relationship itself was so utterly disappointing, that I honestly think I preferred them hating each other and the insults they threw at each other in ACOMAF, ACOWAR, and ACOFAS. Where was the pining? The accidental touches? The stolen glances? The pushing and pulling each other away? The slowly coming to terms with the fact that they have feelings for each other? They were practically non-existent. These two went from hurling insults and not standing to be near each other to jumping each other’s bones in practically 6.9 seconds (yes pun intended there). Instead of talking to each other and developing, they had sex instead. I love me some smut, don’t get me wrong. But there is a level of being there to grow the characters, and then there is just plain unnecessary. It’s a balancing act and Sarah didn’t even seem to try to balance the scales.

Well, what about the world? What about Nesta’s powers and the Cauldron? Yeah we barely got to see any of it. The things we did felt thrown together with no evidence from the past books. Like, I’m sorry, but the Trove felt cheap and completely out of left field. Yeah, Sarah tried to explain it away… But it’s not like she hasn’t set plot points up many books ahead before? Uhhh does anyone recall the plot twist of Crown of Midnight linking to Empire of Storms’s major point at the end? I sure do. So Sarah could have planted seeds if she had wanted to.

Now Nesta’s powers? Those were incredibly interesting. I loved how she Made things and was something we had never seen before! Yet, somehow, those were taken away in the end too… And I honestly don’t get why. It’s not like Sarah wanted to take away her powers to make her normal like the other characters. No, Rhys and Feyre are practically Gods with their powers so there is no reason why Nesta has to be normal. Is three all powerful characters too much now? Well it’s not like they would have been put to use anyway when that villain was dealt with in such a convenient way with a sweet bow on top! Yeah because that had to be a major let down too. Bryallin was dealt with so quickly I had to stop and reread the scene to make sure I was understanding correctly. You’re telling me that with all the power of the Crown she somehow lasted two books less than the wimpy Fae King of Hybern? REEALLLY?

All of that aside… I thought I’d at minimum be able to comfort myself with my love of the other characters. And while I enjoyed Rhys and Feyre having a baby, let’s be frank… That felt convenient too. Fae pregnancies are supposed to be rare, yet Feyre AND Vivian are pregnant by this book? Yeah Sarah I think you need to re-examine your own rules for your worlds. That aside, Feyre felt like a patronizing hypocrite this entire book and Rhys… *Sighs* Rhys is (Was?) my favorite male character of all time. I loved him from the moment he stepped on the page on ACOTAR… Yet he came off like an utter asshole during this book. It breaks my heart. It truly does, to say that. At one point in my life, I worshipped the ground he walked on. Yet this book didn’t have my Rhys. The things I loved and aspired to see in my own choice of partner were gone in this book. He was unrecognizable. I honestly don’t have the words to convey how much that hurts to say. It makes me wish I hadn’t read this book, if I’m being honest. Just so that my memories wouldn’t be tainted.

Despite all of that, there were some things I enjoyed… Nesta’s relationships with Gwen and Emerie were a high point for me. Female friendships are something that I would consider Sarah really got at, which we got in this book. The House was also a great part. It reminded me of feelings I had for Abraxos. The House was a friend who wanted nothing but to help Nesta, which I loved. Helion, for the brief moments he was in this book, was a shining star. He consistently made me smile. Eris and his mysteries were intriguing and I have been dying to learn more about him since ACOWAR so I loved seeing him in this book. I also highly enjoyed the ballroom scene and the Winter Solstice. Those were some bright moments where I felt my old friend ACOMAF shine through. And finally, Nesta herself. Her trauma and growth weren’t there, but I saw the core of her shine through. When she ripped into Tamlin, I felt so much joy and vindication of three books in the making. I don’t care what people say, he deserved that and Nesta gave it to him better than anyone else.

In conclusion, I had a lot of problems with this book. I honestly can’t even begin to say how much that hurts. I never thought in a million years I would feel this way. I’m being as open and raw as I can be when I say that it will take time for me to get over this. I’d love to say I will be continuing the series, but I think I need to step away for a while. Luckily, Sarah has been writing slower so I will probably get that time. To all of you out there that are disappointed, I am so sorry and I hope this didn’t taint your love for the series. For those that enjoyed this book, I am so glad for you! I wish I could share your joy. Thank you to everyone who made it to the end and for reading my little corner of feelings. It’s appreciated more than you know ❤

Fantasy, Favorites, Reviews, Romance

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

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∴ Goodreads Amazon US Barnes & Noble Books-A-Million | Book Depository


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

Dark, Fantasy, Favorites, Reviews, Romance

A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses #2) by Sarah J. Maas

17927395

 Goodreads Amazon US | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Books-A-Million


Synopsis:

Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.

Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.


🍁🍁🍁🍁🍁

1st Read Rating: 5 Stars
2nd Read Rating: 5 Stars
3rd Read Rating: 5 Stars

May 9, 2019 Review (5 Stars)-
MAJOR SPOILERS THROUGHOUT:

*This whole review is basically going to be me gushing over how much I love the characters and the series so… You’ve been warned*

This book is my favorite book of all time… I’m just gonna let that sink in for a moment…

“To the stars who listen—and the dreams that are answered.”

No matter how many times I read it, I still love it more than words can describe each time. My love for these characters and this series grows more and more as time passes and I can’t put into words what this series means to me. It deserves literally all of the stars and more and me rating it five stars doesn’t do it justice.

“He thinks he’ll be remembered as the villain in the story. But I forgot to tell him that the villain is usually the person who locks up the maiden and throws away the key. He was the one who let me out.”

Rhysand- Rhys is my favorite male character ever. I fall for him every time I read this book and I absolutely sob my eyes out every time I read chapters 54 and 55. Hearing him talk about everything he has been through and was prepared to give up for Feyre’s happiness guts me. He always put her first and always gave her a choice, no matter what he wanted… I can’t put into words how perfect he is and I don’t believe that it is possible to love a character more.

“I was not a pet, not a doll, not an animal.
I was a survivor, and I was strong.
I would not be weak, or helpless again
I would not, could not be broken. Tamed.”

Feyre- I’m not gonna lie, it has taken me a while to warm up to Feyre. I wasn’t her biggest fan before this book. She came off whiny and I just didn’t like her way of thinking. I honestly feel like her character is what turns a lot of people off to this series during the first book. But I have found, that if you push through the first book, her character goes through one of the biggest arcs I have ever seen. Feyre turns into this strong and independent woman that I really admire. Late ACOTAR Feyre and late ACOMAF Feyre are SO different, you barely recognize her. And I have come to really appreciate that part of this story. I personally feel like Sarah is best when she is writing about a character that starts of broken.. and that is what Feyre is at the start of this book. She is in one of darkest places imaginable and watching her slowly come back to life throughout this book brings me to tears. Every. Time.

“And I realized—I realized how badly I’d been treated before, if my standards had become so low. If the freedom I’d been granted felt like a privilege and not an inherent right.”

Tamlin- After reading this book for the third time, I have stopped being angry at Tamlin… I am well past anger now. I HATE him and his character. The whole ending to this book pisses me off to a whole other level. I don’t care what Tamlin does in ANY future books, I will never forgive him for what happened to Elain and Nesta… But more so for Rhys… whose mother and sister were slaughtered because of TAMLIN. That can never be undone in my opinion and I’ll never forget it. He doesn’t deserve forgiveness, and that’s never gonna change for me.

“When you spend so long trapped in darkness, Lucien, you find that the darkness begins to stare back.”

Lucien- A lot of people didn’t blame Lucien like I feel they should have. He was a bystander to everything that happened and he just watched. He watched Feyre waste away and, in my mind, he doesn’t deserve Elain and he never will. (Yes, I have read the future books and I know a lot of people forgive him, but I’ll get more into why I do not in my ACOWAR review).

“The Court of Dreams. The people who knew that there was a price, and one worth paying, for that dream. The bastard- born warriors, the Illyrian half breed, the monster trapped in a beautiful body, the dreamer born into a court of nightmares… And the huntress with an artist’s soul.”

The Court of Dreams-
I love every member of The Court of Dreams SOOOOOO much. They are all so beautiful and perfect and their stories break my heart. I cry every time I read about it and I am so happy that this group of broken misfits have found each other. There is no better squad family out there.

“I think Nesta feels everything— sees too much; sees and feels it all. And she burns with it. Keeping that wall up helps from being overwhelmed, from caring too greatly.”

Nesta- A lot of people struggle with Nesta’s character, but I don’t. After that point in ACOTAR where she tells Feyre that the glamour didn’t work on her and she searched for her sister, I knew that Nesta was a good person. She uses that anger and steel on the outside, but I can tell, she’s just as broken as The Court of Dreams members, she just hides it better. AND I really hope that Nesta’s book does justice to her character and we get to see more of the beautiful person that I know is there deep down.

“There are good days and hard days for me—even now. Don’t let the hard days win.”

Elain- I connect with Elain the most out of the Archeron sisters, because I am most like her. Soft-hearted and a romantic at heart… and I will always love Elain because of it. Lucien is not worthy of her, and I am a firm #Elriel shipper (but I’ll get more into that in my ACOWAR review).

“And so Tamlin unwittingly led the High Lady of the Night Court into the heart of his territory.”

Overall, I highly enjoyed this book (like every other time I have read it)! I honestly couldn’t love this story more and I will ALWAYS cherish it. Whether is remains my favorite book or not (though I hardly doubt that any book could replace it… unless written by Sarah of course).

April 4, 2017 Review (5 Stars)-
I absolutely adored this book! I could not put it down even to sleep. If you are skeptical to read it, let me assure you that, if you read nothing else, read this book. I LOVE Sarah J. Maas’ writing! The world- building is absolutely phenomenal. If you liked the first book you will definitely love this book. I read it and can not wait for the next and final book. I have read this book twice now which is saying something because I never reread books. Sarah J. Maas is the only author that I will ever reread because her books are just that good. I implore you to read this book!


Other Books in the Series:

4 🍁s ~ A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) by Sarah J. Maas

5 🍁s ~ A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3) by Sarah J. Maas

4 🍁s ~ A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3.1) by Sarah J. Maas