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This is a great read based on the story of Beauty and the Beast. It’s a new twist on an old tale with faerie lore mixed in. I loved the creativity and the characters! It follows the Beauty and the Beast story as you might expect in the beginning, but the end brings new and strange things that are both exciting and suspenseful.

Sarah J. Maas

4.7 stars on Amazon (paid link)
4.33 stars on Goodreads
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A Court of Thorns and Roses Series
#1 A Court of Thorns and Roses (this page)
#2 A Court of Mist and Fury
#3 A Court of Wings and Ruin
#3.1 A Court of Frost and Starlight
#4 A Court of Silver Flames (synopsis)
#5 Untitled? (maybe, maybe not?)

Main Characters and Other info
Feyre – Heroine and human in this story
Tamlin – High Lord of Spring Court, golden hair and mask
Lucien – Courtier, and emissary to Spring Court, Tamlin’s friend
Amarantha – High Queen of Prythian
Rhysand – High Lord of the Night Court
Setting – Spring Court, a part of Prythian, land of the Fae
Treaty – Created between humans and Fae 500 years ago, there is now a wall keeping magic and the Fae on one side and humans on the other

***** Everything below is a SPOILER *****

What happens in A Court of Thorns and Roses

Feyre and her family have fallen on tough times. They find themselves shunned by high society and near starvation. The job of hunting for food has fallen to Feyre. One day she spots a doe to bring down, but to her surprise, a great wolf attacks the doe first. She wonders if he is Fae in his wolf form, but since she hates Fae, she shoots him anyway with an ash arrow.

Not long after that, a wolf faerie comes demanding payment for the murdered wolf, a life for a life, as stated in the treaty. Feyre chooses to go willingly to live with him in Prythian across the wall rather than be killed. The wolf faerie, Tamlin, lives in a beautiful and large manor. He is the High Lord of Spring Court. Here she also meets Tamlin’s friend Lucien. To her surprise, she is not harmed or even locked up.

All of the household, including Tamlin, wear masks. Feyre learns that they wear them because there is a plight in the land that is affecting magic, and the masks are magically attached. They are searching for a cure for the plight and are afraid it might someday spread to the mortal lands. This worries Feyre since her family is there unprotected. She also worries that they are starving without her to hunt for them. Tamlin eventually assures her that he has ensured they are taken care of.

While there, she is learning to fill her idle time. Tamlin, it seems, is trying to befriend her. He offers to teach her to read and gives her painting supplies, but she is reluctant to trust or like him. As time passes, Feyre realizes that Tamlin and Lucien are not giving her the full story of what is happening with the plight over Prythian. To get answers, she ensnares a Suriel, a type of low Fae who is compelled to tell the truth. He shares that the faerie kingdom Hybern, ruled by a wicked and powerful king, resents the treaty with humans. One hundred years ago, he sent his own Fae over to spy and infiltrate the other High Fae courts. Then fifty years ago, one of his commanders disobeyed him. Before more could be told, Feyre is attacked, and Tamlin comes to her rescue. The two of them begin a sort of truce after that.

Strange “warnings” of a sort begin happening. For example, a summer court faerie is found with his wings ripped off, dying. He says that “she took them.” Feyre overhears more and more conversations about “her.” She later finds out they are referring to the self-proclaimed Queen of Prythian, Amarantha.

Soon there will be a solstice celebration. Feyre and Tamlin sneak off to a field, where they kiss. The next day the handsome High Lord of the Night Court, Rhysand, shows up and discovers Feyre there. He is known for being close to the queen. Tamlin begs him not to tell Amarantha about Feyre. He makes threats and promises nothing. Feyre lies and tells him her name is Clare Beddor. After that, Tamlin decides to send Feyre home to the human realm. But not until after one intimate last night together.

Back home, she finds her family more than taken care of, with a huge house and more. Weeks pass, and another manor is burned to the ground. It was the family of Clare Beddor, the fake name she had given Rhysand. Feyre decides to return because she knows things must be terribly wrong in Spring Court.

She makes her way back only to find the manor ransacked and nearly empty. Only Alis, a servant, is still there. She tells Feyre of Queen Amarantha. The Queen came as an emissary from Hybern 100 years ago. She fought in the mortal war alongside her sister Clythia until Clythia fell in love with a mortal worrier Jurian who eventually betrayed Clythia. Amarantha has hated humans ever since. She came without her king’s permission and wished to take Prythian for her own. Fae have been her slaves for 49 years after she stole part of their power. She says that Feyre could have ended it all. A curse was put on Tamlin after he refused to become Amarantha’s lover and consort. He has to find a human girl who has killed a Fae out of hatred and then make her fall in love with him. All of Spring Court was magically unable to tell Feyre these things. Feyre does love him…but she never told him.

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Feyre asks Alis to take her to Amarantha so that she can rescue Tamlin. Alis tells her there is one more thing she wants to say to her, but her mouth is magically shut to it. Feyre is immediately found and taken to Amarantha. Tamlin pretends not to know her. Feyre is forced to make a deal with the Queen. She is to complete three tasks, one a month; if she does, Tamlin and all of the Fae Courts will be free. Or, she can solve a riddle at any time, and they will be freed immediately.

She completes the first task, but her arm is badly wounded and infected. Rhysand heals her, but she is forced to make a deal with him as well. After this is all over, she must spend a week of every month with him for the rest of her life. He puts a tattoo on her arm and hand, marking their deal. After that, Rhysand forces her to be his escort to parties to flaunt her in front of Tamlin, who is not even allowed to visit Feyre.

Her second task is to solve a riddle to save herself and Lucien, but she can’t read. Rhysand can help her through the eye tattooed on her palm. He later admits to her that he wants to be free of Amarantha and hopes that she wins and that Tamlin rips her to shreds.

The third task is simply that she kills three innocent Fae. They come out, heads covered, and it is difficult, but she kills the first two. Three lives to free all of the Fae, she tells herself. But when they take the head covering off the third innocent Fae, it is Tamlin. She doesn’t know what to do until she begins to remember all the times Tamlin let her overhear things. She guesses correctly that he has a heart of stone (this was Alis’s final secret that she couldn’t reveal) and shoves the dagger in his chest. As he slowly heals, Amarantha is livid. She says she didn’t say when she would free them and refuses to do it. She starts magically breaking Feyre’s bones. While in pain, Feyre solves the riddle the queen gave her. As specified in that bargain, all of Spring Court is released immediately.

How does A Court of Thorns and Roses end?

Tamlin attacks and kills Amarantha, but she has already broken Ferye’s neck, and she is dead. Feyre’s soul is able to watch everything that is happening through Rhysand due to their bond. As Tamlin cradles her, all the High Fea offer up magic, and Feyre becomes an immortal High Fae.

The mountain is destroyed, but Feyre feels like there is a hole in her soul because of the innocent Fae she killed. She is still tied to Rhysand and will have to spend time in the Night Court as promised. She, Tamlin, and the rest of Spring Court go home.

Do you have any theories about this series? Are you excited to read the next book? Let us know in the comments!

Are you ready to buy A Court of Mist and Fury, Aย Court of Wing and Ruin, or A Court of Frost and Starlight (paid links)? Click to purchase and help us pay for hosting.

a court of thorns and roses
a court of mist and fury summary
a court of wings and ruin
a court of frost and starlight
house of earth
house of sky
house of flame
a court of sliver flames

There you go! That’s what happened in A Court of Thorns and Roses. We hope you enjoyed this Court of Thorns and Roses summary with spoilers.

What should you read after A Court of Thorns and Roses series?

We have suggestions! Click to learn more: A Discovery of Witches, From Blood and Ash, The Star-Touched Queen, Prince of Foxes

what to read after ACOTAR

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32 thoughts on “What happened in A Court of Thorns and Roses? (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)”

  1. Thank you very much for taking the time and sharing this summary. It shall serve well to read for a recap prior reading the second book (once it is out).

  2. this was very helpful as I was going to read ACOMAF and I couldn’t remember what happened in book 1!

    1. Glad you liked it Jayda! Hopefully we will have a theories page for book three up soon!

  3. Thank you for this summary! It was such a great refresher. I just got “A Court of Mist and Fury” but I was like wait up- what happened in ACOTAR again?? Lol thanks again!

    1. AHHH I forgot to put my name! Lol it’s Selena not “Anonymous” ๐Ÿ˜

  4. Thank you for this summary!! I didn’t want to reread ACOTAR before starting the sequel so this was very helpful!

  5. I am gonna start reading ACOMAF right now!!! I dont have to reread the first book all thanks to you ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. I was opening my copy of A court of Mist and Fury when I realised that I don’t remember the first one quite that well. Then I stumbled across your recap and it all came back to me. Thank you so much! I enjoyed your recap, it was really helpful!

  7. This spoiler summary is much appreciated. I’ve started reading A Court of Mist and Fury and it’s hard to follow since I can’t exactly remember what happened in A Court of Thorns and Roses. Now that I’ve read this summary it’s all coming back. Many thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Thanks for the recap! One question though, what happenend to Lucien’s eye in ACOTAR? In ACOMAF Feyre mentions that he has a metal eye, but I forgot what made him lose his real one?

    1. He lost one his eyes to Amarantha before Acotar. He is already missing an eye in the first book.

  9. Thanks, this was great in helping me get a recap before reading A Court of Mist and Fury ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Thank you so much! I didn’t really feel like rereading ACOTAR and so i am very happy with this summary!

  11. This was a wonderful summary. Since there’s no Wikipedia summary for ACOTAR, I was quite disturbed because I wanted to start ACOMAF but couldn’t recall half the events of the first book. This was very helpful and not riddled with unnecessary details, so thank you for that. Keep up the excellent work! x

  12. It was supper helpful! As well i’m going to read the second book, but I just want to ask what was the riddle and the answer for it?. Thank you.

  13. I grabbed ACOMAF off the shelf and read the summary and bought it. Only to find out it was part two of a trilogy. I’m almost done with it and without even reading this recap, just blindly guessed and put the pieces together. But to my surprise I was really close to what happened in ACOTAR. But I couldn’t take it anymore. The closer I got to the end of ACOMAF the more curious I came about the first book. It all makes sense now and I’m so glad I don’t have the first book tapping at the back of my mind lol. Ordering the last book asap bc once I finish the second one, I’ll be dying to find out how the story ends!

  14. I read ACOTAR when it was first released but havenโ€™t read the read of the series. Iโ€™ve decided to pick it up again, but I complete forgot what happened in ACOTAR. lol So I read this recap and it has really helped me to remember the story and prepare me for ACOMAF. Thank you so much! And I signed up for your newsletter.

  15. I don’t understand how the book has so many typos. Not just misspelled words but in the future books it also shows symbols too like “$” instead of putting a space. It makes me wonder if she actually had a proof reader. I like the concept of the story but someone else should have wrote it with greater detail

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