I just loved Daughter of Smoke and Bone so much that I couldn’t wait to read the next installment in the series, Days of Blood and Starlight. Good thing that my hold came through the library system quickly!
Much like the first book, the cover on this book is gorgeous. Very dark and brooding with a punch of red, and the font is great. I had a record high of people at work ask me what I was reading during my lunch break. Funny thing was, most of them looked at the cover, cocked their heads, and said, “Vampires?” I was quick to correct their assumptions, but some of them still gave me a quizzical look when I tried to explain that it was about angels (not good guys) vs. chimaera (a.k.a. “monsters”).
Indeed, this book is very much more focused on the battle between the Seraphim and Chimaera. The city of Loramendi lies in ashes, and it seems that the Chimaera have been all but extinguished. Yet, hope may exist for the Chimaera in the form of a new resurrectionist. With the knowledge of her true identity and a heavy bitterness tucked in her heart, Karou links up with Thiago, who survived the downfall of Loramendi. Despite their nasty history and hatred toward one another, they share a goal of reviving Chimaera troops in the hope of renewing and saving their people. Karou reluctantly takes on Brimstone’s role as resurrectionist and creates new and terrifying bodies for slain Chimaera soldiers.
Akiva is stung but unsurprised by Karou’s reaction to his betrayal. Full of shame and pain, he searches desperately for ways to redeem himself. In time, his bastard siblings Hazael and Liraz join with him in his vision of fully ending the war between Seraphim and Chimaera. It is realized that the only way to stop the bloodshed for good is to kill the warmonger behind it: the Emperor of the Seraphim.
Just as good as the first book in the series, Days of Blood and Starlight gives readers a darker, more in depth look at the struggle between doing what is asked and choosing what is right. The search for meaning, forgiveness, and redemption is at the forefront of Akiva’s side of the story, while Karou struggles to help her people without falling prey to the White Wolf’s evil schemes.
Even though this book is darker, there is still some comic relief thrown in by Karou’s friends, Zuzana and Mik. In fact, some of Zuzana’s emails to Karou at the beginning of the book had me laughing out loud. Kudos to Miss Taylor for throwing in Monty Python references – this is a woman after my own heart!
The ending of the book was again a cliffhanger. The final book in the series, Dreams of Gods and Monsters, is on its way to me through interlibrary loan, and I cannot wait to read it! I am interested to see how Akiva and Karou will work together to face the evil plot of Jael. I still have high hopes for their relationship, though I know it will never again be as it was. There was also a hinting at the introduction of a new character – the princess/queen of the Stelians. I look forward to seeing how and where she comes into play.
5 out of 5 – I would read again, and I would love to add to my collection