Home       About Me       Review Index

Sunday, May 12, 2013

My Thoughts: Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

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?

I initially experienced Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor through audio. And I thought it was absolutely fantastic. So naturally I wanted to keep up with that tradition and listen to Days of Blood and Starlight- which is no small venture, as the audio book is just under fifteen and half hours long. When I first began listening to Daughter of Smoke and Bone narrated by Khristine Hvam I was completely taken over. Hvam was a fantastic narrator.

For those who have read both Daughter of Smoke and Bone as well as Days of Blood and Starlight, you know that they are intense novels with a lot going on- especially in Days of Blood and Starlight. This means that mega concentration is necessary when reading the books so you don't miss anything. That is a lot of pressure for the narrator. She needs to be able to keep your attention and keep you engaged (this is also the responsibility of the author and the story). I loved how both stories came a live for me while listening to Khristine Hvam narrate them. She was theatrical when she needed to be and more subdued when it was called for.

One of my favourite things about listening to both these novels was Hvam's talent for accents. The majority of the characters in both books have some kind of European accent and Hvam was able to portray them all perfectly. Brimstone's accent in Daughter of Smoke and Bone had to be one of my favourite. Hvam was able to exude all of what Brimstone was when she was reading his parts. It was brilliant.  Another of my favourite characters that Hvam did a fantastic job with was Zuzana. Zuzana had a more critical role in Days of Blood and Starlight than she did in Daughter of Smoke and Bone, and she was sassy and whitty. She was also so endearing and caring. Whenever we got to her parts in the story I would often find myself either laughing or smiling. I loved how loyal she was to Karou and how she interacted with Mik and the...

I have said it a numerous times that I find sequels incredibly hard to review. I find that for the most part they are just filler novels and don't really contribute to the story. This is completely untrue for Days of Blood and Starlight. Laini Taylor is an absolute literary genius!! I don't know what I was expecting from Days of Blood and Starlight, but I don't think it was what I got. The story spun me around and pulled me here and there. I will admit there were a couple times where I would think to myself, "I don't know if I'm liking this story very much." This is largely due to the war setting that is Days of Blood and Starlight.

You see, in this novel, both the angels and the chimera are preparing for war. I am a pacifist, I don't like war. I also find it really boring and avoidable. And there are a lot of battle themes and brutality strewn about this novel. It was hard for me to handle. But at the same time, I loved how different the story was I was dying to see what would happen next and how it all connected.

Overall, Days of Blood and Starlight is a brilliant addition to Daughter of Smoke and Bone. It introduced new concepts and ideas into the story and developed the characters with more depth than I thought was possible. Definitely a phenomenal read.

Happy Reading Everyone!


  1. I still haven't read the first but I want to. Glad you enjoyed and the accents from the readers sounds great.
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  2. YEAH SARA!!!! I haven't listened to the audio for either book, but this is definitely one of my favorite YA series. I agree Laini Taylor is a literary genius, she had me all over the emotional map in this sequel. I loved that it wasn't a middle book at all, and it furthered the plot and character development thoroughly:) Fantastic review!

  3. Yes, agreed that narrator is amazing! She captured all the voices perfectly. I will probably reread this book in audio form to prepare for the final book, as I did with the first book before this one was released. You are so right that Laini Taylor is a literary genius! It's insane how original and impressive this sequel was. I personally like war-themed books - actually, maybe "appreciate" would be a better word - but there was definitely some pretty dark and disturbing stuff that went on in this one that was hard to read about. And I expect that'll be the case for the third book, as well, now that she's raised the stakes! Can't wait!

  4. I absolutely loved this sequel! I may need to suggest to my library to get the audio, so that I can listen to it before the third book. I had read and then listened to the first book, and agree that the narrator is amazing!


I love comments! So please leave them and I will make every attempt to return the favor!

"So, please, oh please, we beg, we pray, go throw your TV set away, and in its place you can install, a lovely bookcase on the wall."
— Roald Dahl