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? (GoodReads)
- Originality: 10. The chimera are just so dang cool! And I can get behind magic that isn't easy. (Like in Lev Grossman's books)
- Absurdity: 4. Making monsters in a decaying desert palace that is connected by a portal to a parallel monster/angel universe is cray-cray. Somehow the gritty details of Karou's work and the pain involved diffuse a potentially ridiculous absurdity score.
- Level of Paranormal Romance: 3. Zuzana and her boo are adorable, and I loved the "questing" joke they had going on. But they are HUMANS. Come on now, they can't get a high score. I have to honestly admit, however, that I was relieved that Akiva and Karou's relationship evolved the way it did (and this is not a spoiler) because it was a bit much for me in book one. Dangerously close to Fallen-style feather-petting.
- Level of Harry-Potterness: 5. This book has some starkly beautiful passages. Sometimes, however, the epic-ness and seriousness of the whole story feels a bit too much for me. I am sure others will disagree. That is the thing about fantasy worlds, if they don't hit you just right you can end up rolling your eyes. But this feeling doesn't keep me from enjoying this story, and ALL THE BIG THINGS that happened in the last 200 pages suggest the next book will be even better.