Title: Days of Blood & Starlight
Author: Laini Taylor
Series: Daughter of Smoke & Bone #2
Previous Book: Daughter of Smoke & Bone
Next Book: Dreams of Gods & Monsters
Source: Personal Purchase (Audible)
Description from Goodreads:
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.
After finishing Daughter of Smoke & Bone, I was DYING for the sequel. My library didn’t have the audio version available, but I knew that a print version would take me too long to get to, with my review and library books that I needed to get to first. I scoured my library’s site for another audio book, but could not stop thinking about Days of Blood & Starlight, so I finally rejoined Audible just to purchase it! And I started it immediately.
Days of Blood & Starlight starts off very shortly after the ending of Daughter of Smoke & Bone. However, the first several chapters are from Zuzana and Akiva’s perspectives, and neither of them is sure that Karou is still alive, leaving the reader clueless as well. Obviously, I assumed that Karou was alive, seeing as how it’s very rare to kill off the main character of a novel, especially off-page, but I did wonder a little bit.
Because Days of Blood & Starlight is written in third-person, Taylor is able to jump around a bit, and follow different characters, both major and minor, established and new. This worked out really well in Days of Blood & Starlight because the reader gets to see some of the aftermath of the events at the end of the previous book, and also what is happening within the war between the seraphim and chimaera. I will warn you that due to the nature of war, I found Days of Blood & Starlight to be very dark and even graphic at times. There was one scene in particular that really had me cringing. The whole thing was very serious and sad in a lot of ways. But I’m amazed at the writing. Taylor portrayed the grim realities and feelings of the characters so well that I really felt what was going on. Though the subject matter was grim, her writing was beautiful.
Karou kind of got on my nerves in Days of Blood & Starlight. She feels guilty about what happened at the end of Daughter of Smoke & Bone and is trying hard to redeem herself. She made some questionable and even frustrating decisions, and I kind of wanted to smack her. As she learned more about what was actually going on in the war, and after one disturbing scene specifically, she finally started to grow and return to the character that I grew to love in the first book. Zuzana and Mik provided some much needed humor, amid the darkness of the war. They are definitely growing into my favorite characters within the series. Akiva was amazing and heartbreaking. I loved that he didn’t let his mistakes and grief drive him to make bad decisions, like he had in the past. I really loved him in this book.
The ending was great and definitely very much needed after the rest of the book, but of course, it ended not so much with a cliffhanger, but definitely on the precipice of some very big things about to happen. I can’t wait for the third book and am so mad that I have to wait until 2014 to find out the rest of the story (This seems to be a trend lately!).
I would definitely recommend Days of Blood & Starlight, especially if you enjoyed Daughter of Smoke & Bone, but I would warn you to go into it expecting some darker storylines and events.