A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas is a page-turner of a romantic fantasy for young adults/new adults. A fairy-tale reworking of Beauty and the Beast, the protagonist is the nineteen-year-old human Feyre, who has been forced by poverty and the uselessness of her father and older sisters to become the provider for the family. For this reason she has taught herself to hunt. One day, in desperation, she kills a wolf that is clearly more than a wolf—it’s a fairy. And one of its kind comes to claim retribution.
There’s a lot going on in this story: fairy legends, rivalries between courts, ancient rituals, and a growing passion between Tamlin and Feyre. There is also a cynical yet delightful sidekick, Lucien. And there is a handsome, sexy nemesis to challenge Tamlin, one who works for the evil queen who put the land under the curse in the first place. Feyre, human as she is, has to find a way to deal with all these different fairies. Clever, spunky, and determined, she refuses to give up. The odds seem overwhelmingly against her, so it’s a fast-paced, enjoyable read watching her fight.