Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: 11/6/12
Source: Received from publisher for review.
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.
"Once upon a time, an angel and a devil held a wishbone between them.
And its snap split the world in two. "
**This review does NOT have spoilers for Days of Blood and Starlight**
Oh boy, can Laini Taylor write a book. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is undoubtedly one of the most beautifully written books I've ever read. The world she built, the characters she created, and her phenomenal words pulled me in and made me fall in love. There was never a doubt in my mind that I would love this sequel, though I admit, Days of Blood and Starlight did begin a bit slowly for me.
I'm not exactly sure why I had a problem falling into this book. The writing was certainly perfect. Maybe, it's because I was the biggest fan of Karou and Akiva together, happy, and seeing them at odds, though understandable, was hard for me. Another problem for me was the expanded cast of characters. I would be content to only focus on Karou, Akiva, and Zuzana (shout-out for one of the best characters, ever!) forever and ever. But since there is a divide, and Karou and Akiva are separated, there were many other characters brought into the fold. So I spent much of the first portion of DoB&S speed-reading, looking for the shift that kicked things into high gear.
Once the story gets rolling, Days of Blood and Starlight is phenomenal. We have Akiva and Karou, working separately, towards the same agenda: peace. Poor Akiva is resigned and heart-broken. Poor Karou is resolved and heart-broken. The sense of impending chaos, doom, and conflict builds at a brilliantly consistent pace until the very end. An end that leaves us with a promise of a better future?
Oh my. I am thisclose to completely losing my composure and fan-girling spoilers all over the place. So I will stop. Right here. Days of Blood and Starlight is gorgeous, exciting, and imaginative. But if you've read Daughter of Smoke and Bone, you already know that.
"You dreamed of a different way, Akiva, too. You, the pair of you, you had the capacity not to hate. The audacity to love. Do you know what a gift that is?" (eARC, 66%)
"What had she done, really, but fall in love and dream of peace?" (eARC, 75%)
"We dreamed together of the world remade, she kept thinking. It had been the most beautiful dream, and could only have arisen as it did: born of mercy and nurtured in love. And she couldn't think of the future, and peace, without remembering Akiva's hand to her heart and hers to his. 'We are the beginning,' she had said then, in the temple, and everything had seemed possible with his heart beating under her hand." (eARC, 94%)
"Good-bye. The word hurt. Good-bye was the last thing Akiva ever wanted to tell Karou. He thought of their first night together, how at the Warlord's ball and later at the temple they had whispered "hello" to one another, again and again like a shared secret. It had been on his lips the first time he kissed her. That was what he would say to her if he could have what he wanted." (eARC, 95%)
You can purchase Days of Blood & Starlight at:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Daughter of Smoke and Bone Series
(click on cover to read my review)