November 19, 2012

Latest Read: Days of Blood & Starlight

Here are the basics ...
Book: Days of Blood & Starlight  (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #2)
Author: Laini Taylor
Site: http://www.lainitaylor.com/
Category: Young Adult - Fantasy

Summary: In this stunning sequel to the highly acclaimed Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Karou must come to terms with who and what she is, and how far she’ll go to avenge her people. Filled with heartbreak and beauty, mysteries and secrets, new characters and old favorites, Days of Blood and Starlight brings the richness, color and intensity of the first book to a brand new canvas. (Adapted goodreads.com
My thoughts…
The good: I've said this before and I'll say it again -- this is one of the most creative and imaginative fantasy series I've ever read. Not to mention, beautifully written, gripping, funny and can you tell yet that I am totally gushing over here?! Because I am. 

Days of Blood & Starlight picks up months after Daughter of Smoke and Bone.   Karou is nowhere to be found. She's become the center of a media frenzy as the blue-haired girl who can fly. And she's joined the centuries old battle between chimaera and angels in the most unexpected and crucial way. She's cut herself off from the world and the people she loves, lost in her grief and her anger. Anger at Akiva and at herself. Which unfortunately manifests itself in some not-so-wise alliances and decisions.  She's definitely not the girl I remembered from the first book. But I don't think that's a bad thing.  Because what happens to her between then and now is bound to change anyone.  And her pain is this powerful, tangible thing that's driving her. But along the course of the book, she's continues to grow as a character. Strong, making tough choices that take a look at the bigger picture -- peace and a future for her people over her own happiness.  

Which brings me to.. Akiva.  In hindsight, I can see why some people found his relationship with Karou to be on the insta-love side. But I don't know, there's just something about the whole their-souls-recognized-each-other thing that I love.  Or maybe I'm a sucker for tragic romances.  There's a passage in the book that summarized it best: "Well imagine if she [Juliet] woke up and he [Romeo] was still alive, but he had killed her whole family. And burned her city. And killed and enslaved her people."  Yeaaaah. There's pretty much no coming back from that. But that doesn't stop Akiva from trying. He spends the entire book rebelling against the seraphs and atoning for his actions, fighting his way towards peace and Karou. 

Despite the darkness and the despair though, the author finds a way to incorporate a lighter side. Which is kind of amazing considering all the turmoil everywhere.  But she does - through Karou's best friend Zuzana and her boyfriend Mik.  I thought Zu's chapters were much-needed AND in my case, much-loved.  She's funny, full of personality, snarky and unwavering in her love and loyalty for Karou. Their friendship is hands down one of my favorite aspects of the series. 

Honestly, I could go on and on.  There's SO much happening in this book.  Much more than the first, with so many twists and turns. The beauty is that every detail matters.  Even the minor seemingly insignificant moments play a part is emphasizing the emotion of whatever happens next. This review barely touches the surface but hopefully my love for it is shining through. I mean, I got to the last page and literally felt chills.  

(No) reservations: I gave this book five stars on Goodreads.  So no complaints here! 

Do I recommend?:  Yes yes yes! READ THIS SERIES NOW.  Fans of fantasy novels will definitely love this.  But for those who prefer contemporary, I know this is probably out of your comfort zone but believe me, it's worth giving a try. 

Happy reading!

4 comments:

  1. I also am a fan of tragic love as well.

    SIGH. I AM SO FAR BEHIND with my TBR and this is kind of near the top but not so near that I can see it.

    Glad it's a no reservations sort of book though, consider me excited!

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    1. I'm late replying to this but I saw on twitter that you started it! Yay!

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  2. Wonderful review! I just read this one and I loved it. It was better than its predecessor in my perspective and the depth of emotion it conveyed was unparalleled. I can't wait for the sequel now! :D

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    1. Thank you! I thought it was better than it's predecessor too. I can't wait for the sequel either but I read somewhere that it might not be coming out until early 2014. That's too far away!!

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