A Court of Wings and Ruin is the third, and longest book in the Court of Thorns and Roses series. While I enjoy Sarah J Maas, and her writing as a whole, I was disappointed in parts of this book.
This book is 700 pages, three hundred pages longer than the first book and a hundred pages longer then the second. While page length is not in and of itself a concern, the extra pages did not add value to the novel. If anything I felt that if they were trimmed the novel would have been better served. At times the story ran away from itself.
In addition, this novel was more sex than plot. While there have always been a romantic tangle through the plots, in A Court of Wings and Ruin the tangle turned into sex scenes. They did nothing to further along the plot or add value to the characters. The words allocated to these scenes would have been better spent on development.
I enjoyed the series as a whole. However, I feel this final book could have been better by being more developed. I was looking forward to reading it, but I had a hard time getting through the middle of the novel. As I started to get to the last two hundred, or so pages, I felt that the pacing was back and I enjoyed the conclusion.
I read this book as it was recommended on some list somewhere. That and I really liked the cover. I am not much for fairy tale books. Yet, the book read more like a contemporary novel. For a good portion of the book the only fairy tale reference was a book that was written by Alice's grandmother.
The story took a bit to get to the point, but I enjoyed the journey there. I may have enjoyed more then the fairy tale aspect. That part was a bit of a letdown. The book was Gothic, but nothing too dark - I am a wuss so this worked in the books favor for me.
I did enjoy the more character driven aspect of the story, again it was more contemporary than fairy tale. Overall, I found this book enjoyable but not a masterpiece.
Binti is more of a novella than a novel. The story was over as soon as I felt comfortable in the world. It is an amazing world based on African culture in relation to human culture in relation to alien culture. The interplay between cultures is worthy of a thesis.
What really gripped me is how Okorafor was able to draw the reader in, even a reader with no familiarity with African culture, to the heritage of Binti. It started with the very first line of the story. Then through simple narration the reader learned of an important culture and a futuristic Earth without once having to actually be told about it. The storytelling is genius.
My one critique is that I wish the Meduse were described in more depth, especially given their importance. The story focuses on Binti so much that the Meduse are more of an abstract entity that by the time I realize their importance I have either lost all appropriate descriptions or they were never there.
I will, without a doubt, be finishing this series.
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