Sarah J. Maas’s sexy, groundbreaking CRESCENT CITY series continues with the second installment.

Bryce Quinlan and Hunt Athalar are trying to get back to normal―they may have saved Crescent City, but with so much upheaval in their lives lately, they mostly want a chance to relax. Slow down. Figure out what the future holds.

The Asteri have kept their word so far, leaving Bryce and Hunt alone. But with the rebels chipping away at the Asteri’s power, the threat the rulers pose is growing. As Bryce, Hunt, and their friends get pulled into the rebels’ plans, the choice becomes clear: stay silent while others are oppressed, or fight for what’s right. And they’ve never been very good at staying silent.

In this sexy, action-packed sequel to the #1 bestseller House of Earth and Blood, Sarah J. Maas weaves a captivating story of a world about to explode―and the people who will do anything to save it.

Audiobook Review


3 stars

I never thought I would give three stars to one of Sarah J Maas’s books but here we are…

Let me begin by saying that I gave 5 stars to House of Earth and Blood so to say that HOSAB was one of my most awaited book of the year is an understatement.

As I promise to stay spoiler free, I won’t delve into any specifics but will give you a run down of what I loved and what was a major disappointment.

Let’s begin with the positive: what I loved!

-I loved all the side characters (you get some new ones) and their own “stories within the story”. Sarah J Maas writes amazing main and side characters;

-I loved how Ruhn ‘s character grew, we’ll get a lot more of him and I loved his storyline. Also the big surprise about said storyarc that I didn’t see coming at all (so Bravo Mrs Maas);

-I loved the first chapter, the prologue because I was sucked right into the story and trying to evade alongside a new character. Heart beating fast, holding my breath and all. I truly thought I would give the book five stars;

-I love Hunt and his relationship with Bryce. He is just a male reminding me of Rowan Whitethorn, one of my book boyfriends, and he turned out to be something …surprising! I am not saying more.

-I love Bryce as she is far from the party girl at the beginning of HOBAE. I particularly adore her snark and witty comebacks. She is smart, caring, courageous and witty;

-and of course, I love the banter! Sarcasm is just my jam.

As you can see, there is a lot to love in this book so why the three stars only?

What I didn’t like:

the storyarc was all over the place! It didn’t seem that the characters had a real goal or when they got something to do, they did it reluctantly. I didn’t see a drive , a real “quest” in this story. In a contemporary book, that would probably not bother me but compared to the first book where everything was centered around finding a murderer, building the world, building the relationship…this one felt like “directionless”. Like a big filler of 800 pages.

the big reveal!
I won’t tell you what the big reveal was obviously (spoiler free remember) but when I learned about it, I was all: “Seriously? You want to go that way???” with eye roll and all because that does not make sense with the story and genre;

the ending on a cliffy.
Not because it was a cliffhanger (that was to be expected) but because everyone on social media was astonished…but me.
Why? Because SJM already hinted at that “trope” in another story and she had “prepared” me for this. It was not that I disliked that but rather that I was disappointed not to be shocked and amazed like everyone else LOL

I am perfectly aware that I am the black sheep here and that the vast majority of readers adore the book. And that makes me very happy for Sarah J Maas as she is a formidable writer and one of my favorite authors! I’ll read Crescent City 3 without a doubt!
And I think my 3 stars are partly due to me having very high standard and expectations for Sarah J Maas.

All comments are welcome but please, be respectful.
Reading is a personal experience and this is my own experienc and personal opinion.

Thanks for reading!


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  1. Literally found this blog trying to find peoples opinions that match my own… it was SO SLOPPY AND DIRECTIONLESS. The big reveals weren’t that astonishing to me either. I feel like Maas doesn’t write anything without reason but this felt sooooooo chaotic with a lot of pointless plot points and interactions. And don’t get me started on the sex scenes…. Hard pass. I think she has set us up for a kickass third (I hope) but the last thirty pages are probably literally all you need to read to get ready for the next… I was so disappointed in this book and I am surprised not more people agree. Maas is my fav author so maybe I had high expectations but this is not her best work at all. (And also… at the end, Bryce is wearing black combat boots in the stairwell but then Sneakers in the next location…. Maybe I’m being knit picky but the editor really missed that?! For a Maas book?!?!)

  2. Thank you for your spoiler-free, concise yet informative summary. I just finished reading the first book in the series and am excited for the next one. Then I saw something online about it ending on a cliffhanger and I got worried because I hate cliffhangers that we have to wait months or years to resolve. But since you saw it coming I have a feeling I know what it is since the Book of Breathings was oh so casually mentioned in the first book 🙂

    Thanks to your review, I’m ready to read this book with the modest expectations and enjoy it.

  3. Oh no! Sorry to hear this one was just okay for you. I still need to go back and re-read the first book because I’ve forgotten pretty much everything but I have to admit I’m a little nervous about the second book, especially if the plot is all over the place. Surprising for Maas.

  4. Sorry this didn’t live up to your expectations Sophie! I’m a little over halfway and so far I’m enjoying the book but I definitely already agree with the plot feeling a little all over the place and directionless… I’m curious to see how I’ll feel about the big reveal and cliffhanger ending… But I also agree that the secondary characters are wonderful!

  5. I haven’t read any books by Sarah J Maas, but I’ve read lots of reviews across the blogging community. Giving honest opinions about what you read is what makes the community so treasured. Keep it up, Sophie.