Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Reviewing: Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a world free of bloodshed and war.

This is not that world.

Art student and monster's apprentice Karou finally has the answers she has always sought. She knows who she is—and what she is. But with this knowledge comes another truth she would give anything to undo: She loved the enemy and he betrayed her, and a world suffered for it.

In this stunning sequel to the highly acclaimed Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Karou must decide how far she'll go to avenge her people. Filled with heartbreak and beauty, secrets and impossible choices, Days of Blood & Starlight finds Karou and Akiva on opposing sides as an age-old war stirs back to life.

While Karou and her allies build a monstrous army in a land of dust and starlight, Akiva wages a different sort of battle: a battle for redemption. Forhope.

But can any hope be salvaged from the ashes of their broken dream?

*Contains spoilers*
Spoilers will be between these [ ] -- Highlight to read them.

Days of Blood and Starlight moves on the lighthearted romance/magic/action vibe that Daughter of Smoke and Bone had and becomes entirely war-based, meaning the book just got a whole lot more violent, gory, and intense.

And I liked it. In the first book, my attention would sometimes drift off and I would start thinking about fudge and chocolate chip cookies and the like. But in this one... I couldn't tear my eyes away. I read it in one sitting.

So why, you ask, are you missing a star?

Okay, well, as fabulous as it was, it just wasn't perfect. I still didn't [see how Madrigal and Karou were the same person at all. There wasn't even a fraction of Madrigal inside of Karou, and even though I liked that it showed how much she had changed, I just couldn't feel the story as much as I could have.]. Also, the book focused less on the characters and more on the plot. Now, I am all for plot, don't get me wrong. But in my opinion, characters carry the plot, not the other way around.

Karou is an amazing character, but I wasn't really able to connect with her in either DoSaB nor Blood and Starlight. The only thing I really felt when reading in her point of view was her love for her family and her fierce will to survive. 

I loved Mik and Zuzana. They added so much... spark to the book and I am so, so glad Laini Taylor didn't just let Zuze -- the best friend-- fade into the background once Karou started getting involved with the chimaera. However, I was not a big fan of [how easily Karou decided to stay with the chimaera-- the ones who tricked her and plotted to kill her-- instead of her best friend in the modern word. The modern world that has wi-fi. Priorities, people.].

Akiva had a lot of character-building in this book. At least, I thought so. I liked how it actually showed things from his point of view and allowed us to really get to know him beyond the fierce warrior with awkward side angel person we saw in Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Laini Taylor has an incredible writing style that makes every sentence sound haunting and has a big impact on the reader. I hung on to every word.

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