Once again: not objective. The books that make up the "Fire and Thorns" series would be filed away on a bookshelf called "KAREN'S WEAKNESSES AND COMFORT READS" if such a bookshelf existed.
So, obviously I like the world Carson's built. There are some minor problems -- I mean, Elisa's first real love interest was HER KIDNAPPER in the first book. But even then, it was easy to tell that Hector was being set up as the long-haul Dude to Love, and just in case you couldn't deduce that from the hints in The Girl of Fire and Thorns
, Carson spends a LOT of time discussing how young he looks in the beginning of The Crown of Embers
. It's okay, I'd be Team That Dude anyway because he's been written to be the perfect guy for Elisa. IT'S ALMOST LIKE CARSON HAD A PLAN.
I feel like the characters are a bit flat sometimes, and there are spots of dialogue or internal monologue every now and then that make me roll my eyes (like when Elisa says a little prayer that the child of an acquaintance will be "charming and slender and beautiful"), but I really dig the overall plot and the world and the way that the politics of running a kingdom are woven into the story -- so most of the time, I probably didn't even notice things that might normally give me pause.
While it is always irritating to have to wait to finish a trilogy, I think this one's worth it. I guess there's always the possibility that Carson will blow it in the third book, but I like the way it's looking from here.