Monday, January 28, 2013

Heidi Reviews Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor


Days of Blood and Starlight
Hardcover, 517 pages
Published November 6th 2012 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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. For hope.
But can any hope be salvaged from the ashes of their broken dream?

This review was first posted at Rainy Day Ramblings.

A stunning series!
Karou finds herself thrust back into the world of the Chimaera. She works tirelessly to
aid the rebels led by the White Wolf. After the treacherous betrayal by Akiva, she has
turned her back on love and the chance to build a new world. Now she takes up
Brimstone's trade and crafts new soldiers. The war is relentless, bloody and never
ending. The battles have taken a cruel twist as the innocents on both sides are
slaughtered. This heartless bloodshed is causing warriors, chimaera and seraphim
alike to rethink their actions, but the heartless leaders press on and insist on more
slaughter. Can there ever be peace?
What I Liked:
• Once again, I loved immersing back into Laini Taylor's world of chimaera and
seraphim. The world building continues to be masterful and astonishing in this series.
I am so impressed by the intricate and detailed world Ms. Taylor has crafted and that it
continues to stir the imagination.
• I am happy to say that this book does not suffer from a second book syndrome. The
story in some ways is more engaging and more complex and it is has a number of
stunning twists. It is much darker, though and instead of a love story this one plunges
you right into the trenches of war. It is dark and sorrowful and a horrific picture of the
evils of war. But there is always that shimmer of hope.....that possibly after all the
horror, sorrow, bloodshed, heartache and death there can and will be a new world....
• Karou's growth in this novel is tremendous. She has recovered her memories from
her former life and she is in the middle of the never ending war. She struggles with
the past, knowing she gave her heart to the one who helped destroy her people. She
is bitter, sad and determined. She is far removed from the fun, care free, somewhat
rebellious teenager we met in Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Now she is a fierce
woman bent on helping her people, yet her heart bears an enormous burden of sorrow
and shame.
• I loved that this book gives us a plentiful dose of Mik and Zusanna. The two love birds
bring some lighthearted comedic relief to the book, and definitely help to lighten up the
mood with their fun and witty banter. I liked how determined Zusanna is to find her
friend, even if it means believing the unbelievable. It was also nice to see their
romance in full bloom. The pair are a shining beacon of light and love amidst the
chaos.
• This is one of those books that you need to set aside plenty of time for as it is full of
cliffhanger chapter endings. If you pick this up thinking you can read just a couple of
chapters, you are wrong. Time and time again, there is a dramatic chapter ending that
will have you saying, I can't leave it on that note, just one more chapter....The story
line is riveting and there are some big surprises! The plot is also intricate and complex
and I was left eager for the next installment.

Without a doubt, The Daughter of Smoke and Bone Series has become one of my
absolute favorite series ever! The writing is amazing, the world building top notch, and
there are riveting story lines and memorable characters. I am stunned at how talented
and amazing Laini Taylor is. If you have not yet experienced her work, do yourself a
favor and pick up her books immediately! She is a writer you do not want to miss! I can
honestly say that I will be on auto buy for anything she writes in the future!

Favorite Quotations:
"It was one of those dreams that invade the space between seconds, proving sleep has
its own physics--- where time shrinks and swells, lifetimes unspool in a blink, and cities
burn to to ash in a mere flutter of lashes."
"Or...perhaps Fate laid out your life for you like a dress on a bed, and you could either
wear it or go naked."
"These weren't her folk, but....they were, and maybe that meant that anyone could be
anyone's, which was a sort of nice thing to think, with the world falling apart."
"The fox solider had been Madrigal's friend once, and her soul was the touch of sunset
and laughter, with a bite like the sting of nettles; Haxaya was someone you wanted on
your side..."
"It is bodies that make us real. What is a soul without eyes to look through, or hands to
hold?"
"She smelled of the river and trembled like a breeze on a butterfly's wing, and Ziri
cradled her as if she were their world's last hope. And maybe she was."
"You've always felt the truth in him, then and now. Your heart is not wrong. Your heart
is your strength."

Disclosure: I purchased a copy of this book. All opinions are my own and I was not
compensated for this review.

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