20. stu 2014.

(Series Review) Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

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Book summary:

"Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands", she speaks many languages - not all of them human - and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?"


      I am so happy that I waited for all three books to be published before picking up Daughter of Smoke and Bone - Laini Taylor is a queen of killing you slowly with cliffhangers. Even the final book leaves you with more questions than answers.

     First book of the trilogy was the weakest, in my opinion. Mainly focused on the romance and full of unbelievable portraying of Czechs - more like literary caricatures than actual characters - Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a book that slowly drives you crazy, no matter the fact that you keep reading it because you just have to see what will happen next. The most appealing thing about it, as one of my friends described it, is its weirdness. Yes, this is a love story with a paranormal twist and most of it can be labeled as the usual archetypes of the genre, what makes it easy for a reader to predict in which direction will story go, but, at the same time, you are pulled into this crazy whirlwind of emotions and mythology.

     Days of Blood and Starlight was a pleasant surprise - when it comes to trilogies, second book tends to be the weakest link, one that has all standard "middle book syndrome" issues. There is no middle book syndrome here.  Laini Taylor managed to redeem herself because she moved the focus of the story from the romance to the political intrigue, building of the fictional (fantasy) world - and here we come to the part where I realized what was the big no for me in the previous book, but also generally in fantasy literature. There is no "world will end if the star-crossed lovers don't end up together" storyline. I was sure that something along those lines will happen in the rest of the series, but thankfully, it did not.

     Dreams of Gods and Monsters was the most exciting book of the trilogy. Every chapter was like a cliffhanger for itself - it was a pure, enjoyable torture to read it. Full of angst and drama, unexpected twists and turns, final installment keeps you on your toes until the very end. And the second end. Also, the third one. You're confused, right? I know, I was, too. Dreams of Gods and Monsters started so good, but ended in the massive cluster of hints for what would come in the fantastical world of Eretz after we close the book and quick solutions for mysteries that popped up along the way. Imagined like the explanation of all whys and hows and how comes, it overwhelms a reader with amount of information, mythology and science mix up and constant switching from one point of view to the another. Dreams of Gods and Monsters is a book that should be read slowly - not in one sitting - take a breaks, process what you read and then continue. (Jessica from Rabid Reads explained this perfectly.)

    What is my biggest issue with the Laini Taylor's trilogy? Ending. It is obvious that this is not the open ending which is the end no matter all questions and mysteries that it includes, but the introduction to the possible spin-off series. (If the marketing division of the publishing house establishes that there is enough interest among readers/buyers for something like that and that it would bring a lot of money - you know, The Mortal Instruments scenario.)

      Final judgement? Beautifully told story about angels and demons, Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy will find its fans among readers who prefer fantasy and paranormal romance, especially younger readers who are meeting this kind of literature for the first time. For those who are spoiled by epicness of Lumatere Chronicles or don't like when trilogies are not really trilogies, this will be enjoyable read,like it was for me.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone - 3 stars
Days of Blood and Stralight - 5 stars
Dreams of Gods and Monsters - 3.5/4 stars

Happy reading,

Broj komentara: 15:

  1. I am so nervous to start this series because I have such a love hate relationship with angel books and because so many people didn't love the last book but I am so curious too that I just want to do it and take the plunge and start them.

    I think after reading your review I am going to try to make time for this series.

    1. I am hesitant about picking up books about angels, too. In most cases I send up disappointed, but this trilogy was something different. Mythology isn't based on Biblical tales.
      You should give it a chance if you ever find yourself in the mood for angels. :)

  2. One day I'll really have to try this series, I keep hearing amazing things about it and now I'm so so so intrigued to try to! thanks for the whole review.

    1. Thank you, Melliane. I hope you will like it.

  3. Sometimes series reviews are the only way to go; there's nothing like a good binge read! It's too bad about the ending, but unfortunately it's all about marketing nowadays. I'll be sure to let Jessica know about the shout-out!

    Carmel @ Rabid Reads

    1. I originally planned to write a review for every book, but I got so caught up in the story, I couldn't do anything else.

  4. Wonderful reviews, and I am glad you let me know the books strengths. This is a series I would like to try.

    1. Thank you, Kimberly. I can't wait to see what you'll think about it.

  5. I struggled with the first book in this series. I read it way past after it's release but everyone kept on raving about it and I'm not going to lie, my expectations were sky high. Unfortunately, it just wasn't for me and I haven't picked up the subsequent books because of that.
    I am happy to hear that this series got progressively better for you. Not sure how I feel about the ending though.
    Lovely review, Glass!

  6. I'm so glad you loved this series too Glass! I agree with you on the end of Dreams of Gods and Monsters though - I wanted it to be less open/less setup for possible future books, and more an actual conclusion to the series. After everything everyone went through, I wanted a few more definites as to what their lives were going to be like in the future!

  7. I have this series on my TBR list! I have to read it, because it does sound good. But it looks like the middle book is the best. I don't mind a good cliffhanger ending because that way the sequel will get pushed up on my list of to reads :) Great review!

  8. I had issues with the first book. I liked the first half but the second sort of tanked for me. I never picked up the sequels. Nice to hear you enjoyed the story overall but I think I'd be a little annoyed that this was marketed as a trilogy and now it's more books. It annoyed me with Mortal Instruments too. Great series review, Glass! :)

  9. I don't mind a big focus on romance so I might get into the first a bit more... I have been wanting to read these though

  10. What a great review, Glass! I've read the first book in the series when it first came out and at that time, I loved it. The whole plot fascinated me and all those amazing creatures had me intrigued. Anyway, the second book... I never really got to it because I didn't feel like it. In fact, I feel like I'm out of this series. We'll see how it goes though. I'm glad book #2 was a pleasant surprise for you and my God! I love cliff-hangers, so book #3 is sounding even better to me. I'm glad that this series from from good to better for you.

    Sarika @ The Readdicts

  11. I'll have to give this series a try. Thanks for your fabulous reviews!
    Sharon @ Sharon's Book Nook!



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