Saturday, January 5, 2013
Review: Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor
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?
review). So when I got the opportunity to review Days of Blood and Starlight, I was like, giddy. I rarely get giddy. Wow. That fell flat.
First of all, let me give you a quick summary. So, book opens and we get 3, maybe 4 (I kinda lost count after a while) different story lines/ POVs. Daughter of Smoke and Bone protag, Karou is doing her thing in creature land, Akiva is doing his angel thing in angel land and Zuzana is doing her humorous thing in human land, and each of them are doing their own thing. And then there’s this other POV in there and I don’t really know why it was in there, it eventually linked back up then disappeared altogether. Uh, whatever. This would be okay for maybe the first 50 pages, a stretch at 100, but at 200 pages in with only 2 of those story lines barely (and FINALLY) interweaving, I was kinda mad and disinterested. The last 200 pages held together better, but by then it was kind of a too-little, too-late.
Here’s the thing, I could overlook a lot of things if it were not for one thing. And it’s a spoilery thing for Daughter of Smoke and Bone, so yeah, watch me awkwardly spell this out for you without giving anything away. Remember that pretty big cliffhanger-y thing in the end of Daughter of Smoke and Bone? The one where you’re like OMGs HOW CAN ANYTHING BE THE SAME AND OKAY NOW?! Yeah. So that? It just wasn’t addressed. This series went from a mysterious and magical world to a straight-up war book. I didn’t know I was signing up to read 400 pages about corrupt political figures, dying masses and the general wrongness of war. This book lost what Daughter of Smoke and Bone built. The main redeeming quality of the entire plot/ characters were Zuzana and Mik. They were the heart and humanity I just wanted a little more of.
All-in-all this makes me sad. I loved Daughter of Smoke and Bone wanted so much to love the sequel. Don’t get me wrong, Taylor’s writing was just as sweet, sad and poetic as before. Her world building was strong, unique and amazing. There were parts that made me laugh, be sad and get all mushy-sweet. But all of that wasn’t enough for me, it didn’t have the same lure as the first book and I really think it the multiple POVs and non-connecting story lines destroyed it for me.