Be sure to read my initial thoughts from my first read of A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas here.
Slight spoiler warning for ACOTAR and ACOMAF.
A second read-through of a Court of Thorns and Roses let me to notice a lot more details that I had missed during my first introduction to the world. The inspiration that the novel drew from Beauty and the Beast was also more prevalent than I had realized. Her family life and desire to protect those she loves is directly pulled and inspired by the original novel. Tamlin’s beast form and temper are also reminiscent of the Beast in the story.
Tamlin is honourable, kind and the Fae that Feyre needed when she is first introduced to Prythian. Her life had been harsh, her stomach empty and her family relying on her for most of her life. It wasn’t fair, but it was the only existence she knew. She needed someone to trust and learn believe in a new world, to change and grow, and Tamlin was that Fae.
Knowing how the book ends and what happens in ACOMAF, you can more clearly see the actions and personality of Tamlin. He is very protective of Feyre and a little bit controlling, but without any direct threat to her life it is not as apparent. The events that occurred Under the Mountain pushed him over the edge and turned that protectiveness dark. It became corrupted and too strong to be overlooked. He also has an explosive temper and anger, but you see it less frequently as the book goes on. That doesn’t mean it goes away, so his personality in the second book is not as surprising as I thought it was my first time reading the series. It still like him in this series, but I don’t love him as much as I did during the first read through.
The incredible world of Prythian is just so packed with different faeries, Courts, and intense story that you can’t focus on everything the first time you read it. You discover more magic the second, or third, time you read through the book because you know the story and can now also focus on the read of the world building and character development. To me, that is fantastic writing when you can always discover something new hidden in a book you love.
I fell in love with the series even more on the second read-through, especially Rhysand. You truly appreciate just how much he did for Feyre, not just healing her arm when she was on death’s door but mentally and emotionally supporting her when she was ready to give up. He puts on a dark front, but his every action belies his true feelings. Rhys lies to Amarantha about the identity of Tamlin’s human love, even though it could mean his end and his people’s if she discovers the truth. On multiple occasions, he plays the bad guy to maintain a façade but secretly does good. I appreciated and recognized his acts a lot more the second time reading, and it made me fall in love with his character even more.
Even though I know what happens in the book, the emotions are still so prevalent. You ride the story’s highs and lows, feel yourself filling with light when there is goodness, and fear for the dark. I can’t even describe my feelings. I was walking around my room reading the final pages as Feyre is being hurt – and someone calls out her name. I just sort of collapsed to the ground, with my hand on my heart and my feelings bursting from my chest about that particular Fae male. You could almost hear the pain and horror in his voice as he cried out for her, and it destroyed me. The final moments of the book were so beautiful and made me a little teary.