Sarah J. Maas’s first adult fantasy is everything that I wanted it to be and more. I cannot wait for the sequel to come out, whenever that may be!
Title: House of Earth and Blood
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Genre: Urban Fantasy
(Taken from Goodreads)
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.
Sarah J Maas was already a favourite author before I had even started House of Earth and Blood, and she has not disappointed with her latest release. House of Earth and Blood, is her first specifically marketed Adult book; however, the A Court of Thorns and Roses series is very close to being an Adult series. It is also her first move into Urban Fantasy, rather than a more traditional fantasy setting, which I was very excited to see.
The world-building within House of Earth and Blood is fantastic. Sarah J Maas has done a great job at combining both modern and traditional elements, such as weaponry and technology. For instance, a character walking around armed with both a sword and a gun, which is something you do not often see. The initial chapters of the book are slightly info-dumpy, but this is necessary to set the scene of the book and makes it much easier to understand what is going on later. To have made the information a bit easier to understand, I would have loved a glossary at the back of the book to refer to. As there are a lot of different species to distinguish between and they are all given at the beginning, so it is not easy to remember them the further you get in.
Characters are a big part of Sarah J Maas’s books for me, as I always fall in love with them and House of Earth and Blood was undoubtedly no different. Bryce Quinlan was a character that my love for developed throughout the book, as initially she was my least favourite character due to her decisions. While she portrays to the outside world that she is a party queen, on the inside and in private, she is compassionate and sensitive, which is a dynamic I loved to see. Her loyalty to Danika and Hunt throughout the book, no matter what they did, was something that made me like her even more.
Hunt Athalar is not my favourite Sarah J Maas male love interest so far, but I am interested to see the direction that his character is going to go in the future. He spent most of House of Earth and Blood trying to move past his previous lover and the way that romance ended. Which is something that I did appreciate, as it allowed us to get a look into his previous life before he came to Crescent City.
However, my favourite character in the book has to be Lehabah, I would look forward to Bryce being at work just so we could see her interactions with Lehabah and the banter between them.
The last 200 pages of House of Earth and Blood left me in floods of tears, and while I will often cry at books, I cannot remember the last time that I sobbed as much as I did. It emotionally destroyed my soul, and I am not sure that I or the characters will recover for a while from the events. Which is testament to how emotionally attached I have become to the characters through Sarah J Maas’s writing.
I can’t wait to carry on with the rest of the series; however, I am quite worried about what will happen to the romance as we all know how Sarah J Maas has you routing for one love interest and then throws in another, and you then want to route for the new one even more.
Buy House of Earth and Blood: Bookshop.org