Days Of Blood and Starlight - Laini Taylor
(I apologize for the format of th review. I'm using the Blogger app on my phone as the mini M is being difficult to get down in bed tonight)
Laini Taylor: I'm starting to wonder if you are related to Stephen Moffat. Why's that you ask? Because I do hate to love the way you rip my heart out my chest and show it to me. Ugh!! The feels!!
"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?"
So if Daughter of Smoke and Bone rocked my world, Days of Blood and Starlight totally destroyed me. There few books that leave me in the end completely devastated. I was myself on the verge of tears throughout this whole story. This was a tale of war and the price we pay for it.
Most sequels in book series now a days seem to merely be filler and fluff to satisfy the masses until the big finale in the final book. Oh no. Not this book. There is much that is revealed in this book that was left open wide for the in the first book. As I don't want to give anything away I will be vauge and cryptic. We see more of Karou's past and the depth of her relationship with Akiva. Both Karou and Akiva are dealing with guilt that weighs them both down, changing them for the better and the worse.
Karou is in the desert wasting away and bruising and breaking not only her body, but also her strong will and spirit. She mourns the death of Brimstone (sorry if I spoiled that for you but you should have read the first book by now!), and blames herself. While she brings back her people and creates a vicious army, Akiva believes Karou is dead and has distanced himself from the other angles. It is when they are ordered to hunt down and kill innocent demon refugees feeling for their lives that Akiva discovers that this is the only way to seek redemption for what he has done.
And real quick, can we talk about Laini Taylor's angels? What a bunch of dicks. Really. Unbelievable in their terrony and lust to destory the demons. But it was not about the demons themselves, but the lust for power and control. Taylor did a great job creating an antagonist that I wouldn't mind Judi chopping to death.
Like in the first book, Taylor beautifuly crafted a world that pulled me in and enveloped me fully. However, this story was more raw. It was a deep cut that was exposed to rubbing alcohol and salt. It made me yearn for everything to be okay for Karou and Akiva. I wanted so badly for there to be a measure of closer and peace for these two characters because Taylor totally through them into the deepest and darkest pit of despair in the inner most ring of Bell and told them "good luck getting out!" But in theend, we are left hanging in a shakey balance of uncertainty and wobbly alliances that stand on the edge of a blade.
Oh! The feels!!
My heart aches in anticipation for the next book. I need to know what happens next! There are so many secrets and so many things that could go horrifically and catastrophically wrong. But then, maybe, just maybe, Karou and Akiva get their happy ending that they truly deserve. My heart wants the happy ending, but rational brain tells me Laini Taylor is probably going to leave me a snot nose and tear stained mess sobbing on the floor. And you know what? I'm okay with that.
Remember to always be yourself. Unless your a pirate...them always be a pirate. Go forth and read!