Sarah J. Maas delivers magical mind melds, hack-and-slash violence, ethical hand-wringing, emotional angst, and lots of hot faery sex in this hefty series installment sure to delight her fans. She also throws both heroine Feyre and the reader a bit of a curve, turning Book 1's romantic hero Tamlin into a control freak and sinister Night Court lord Rhysand into Feyre's new love. Whether the subject is a glorious night sky, a character's gory injuries, or raging lust, the skillfully crafted descriptions grab your attention.
A COURT OF MIST AND SHADOWS will please fans who like their romantic fantasy dark, violent, and convoluted. It's action-packed and loaded with complex, shifting cosmology, as well as real-life issues that resonate with teen: friendship, changing relationships, love gone wrong, family, loyalty, and more. For some, the oft-repeated hand-wringing and internal debate, as well as the dialogue's tendency to veer from medieval to millennial and back, may get old; for others, it's part of the charm.