Romanticised abuse | Tamlin and Feyre in ACOTAR (novel)

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It's no surprise that these two characters make it onto this blog series. You know me well enough to have at guessed that, right? It's no secret that I have huge issues with the way Maas writes "romantic" relationships. Today, I'm focusing on the worst of the worst: Tamlin and Feyre. Specifically Tamlin, who is the abuser here.

Background and context. 

Tamlin has told Feyre to stay in her room and not venture out during the celebrations he and his court are having. He doesn't give her valid reason why she shouldn't, and since Feyre is curious, she decides to come out and wander around. As she's heading back inside, a drunk Tamlin notices her and corners her.

Romanticised assault:

“Let go,” I said as evenly as I could, but his claws punched out, imbedding in the wood above my hands. Still riding the magic, he was half-wild. 

"You drove me mad,” he growled, and the sound trembled down my neck, along my breasts until they ached. “I searched for you, and you weren’t there. When I didn’t find you,” he said, bringing his face closer to mine, until we shared breath, “it made me pick another.” 

I couldn’t escape. I wasn’t entirely sure that I wanted to. 

She asked me not to be gentle with her, either,” he snarled, his teeth bright in the moonlight. He brought his lips to my ear. “I would have been gentle with you, though.” 

I shuddered as I closed my eyes. Every inch of my body went taut as his words echoed through me. 

"I would have had you moaning my name throughout it all. And I would have taken a very, very long time, Feyre.” 

He said my name like a caress, and his hot breath tickled my ear. My back arched slightly. He ripped his claws free from the wall, and my knees buckled as he let go. I grasped the wall to keep from sinking to the floor, to keep from grabbing him—to strike or caress, I didn’t know. I opened my eyes. He still smiled—smiled like an animal. 

“Why should I want someone’s leftovers?” I said, making to push him away. 

He grabbed my hands again and bit my neck. I cried out as his teeth clamped onto the tender spot where my neck met my shoulder. I couldn’t move—couldn’t think, and my world narrowed to the feeling of his lips and teeth against my skin. He didn’t pierce my flesh, but rather bit to keep me pinned. The push of his body against mine, the hard and the soft, made me see red—see lightning, made me grind my hips against his. I should hate him—hate him for his stupid ritual, for the female he’d been with tonight … His bite lightened, and his tongue caressed the places his teeth had been. He didn’t move—he just remained in that spot, kissing my neck. Intently, territorially, lazily. Heat pounded between my legs, and as he ground his body against me, against every aching spot, a moan slipped past my lips. 

He jerked away. The air was bitingly cold against my freed skin, and I panted as he stared at me. “Don’t ever disobey me again,” he said, his voice a deep purr that ricocheted through me, awakening everything and lulling it into complicity.

Tamlin is supposed to be the hero of the book. But although he is drunk in this scene, that does not excuse his behaviour towards Feyre. She tells him to let go of her, he doesn't, and because this is Maas writing, of course he has to bite Feyre and it's all supposed to be hot and sexy.

This scene is utterly revolting and perverse. It is sexual assault. What makes it worse, is that we're supposed to love Tamlin, feel sorry for him, and ship him with Feyre. It's sick.

I hate this relationship in ACOTAR. Tamlin is horrifically overprotective of Feyre, treats her like his own personal sex toy, and when she's Under the Mountain and has a chance to escape, he ruins it by shoving her against a wall and trying to have sex with her. He's selfish, disgusting, and violent. He truly is a Beast.

A Court of Thorns and Roses does not portray a romance. 

It portrays a sick, Stockholm Syndrome relationship where Tamlin goes as far as to violently sexually assault Feyre. If the girl says no, you listen. If you don't, then that's sexual assault.

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