Book Review: Dreams of Gods and Monsters

Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

Genre: YA Paranormal

Number of Pages: 624

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis: By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her, if there can even be a future for the chimaera in war-ravaged Eretz.

Common enemy, common cause.

When Jael’s brutal seraph army trespasses into the human world, the unthinkable becomes essential, and Karou and Akiva must ally their enemy armies against the threat. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people.

And, perhaps, for themselves. Toward a new way of living, and maybe even love.

But there are bigger threats than Jael in the offing. A vicious queen is hunting Akiva, and, in the skies of Eretz … something is happening. Massive stains are spreading like bruises from horizon to horizon; the great winged stormhunters are gathering as if summoned, ceaselessly circling, and a deep sense of wrong pervades the world.

What power can bruise the sky?

From the streets of Rome to the caves of the Kirin and beyond, humans, chimaera and seraphim will fight, strive, love, and die in an epic theater that transcends good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy.

At the very barriers of space and time, what do gods and monsters dream of? And does anything else matter?

Discussion: When I finished this book I closed it and stared at the cover for a solid ten seconds.

Be prepared for a sucky review. I can’t even.

The only way to share my thoughts is through GIFs.

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WAIT…It’s over?

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OMG BEST SERIES EVER MUST BLOG ABOUT IT!!!

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Did it really satisfy me? But–but–I can’t even. This is so unfair.

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Can’t deny my love for this series.

That’s the gist of it. I mean, it’s amazing. No more explanations.

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Book Review: Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

Genre: YA Paranormal

Number of Pages: 513

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis: 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?

Discussion: Days of Blood and Starlight was just as good as the first book. The setting still isn’t the USA or UK. And even though Karou flees Prague and goes to the chimaera, and then they go somewhere else, it’s a cool setting: Morocco.

So what else did I like about this book?

Zuzana and Mik

They are Karou’s best friends, and I was very glad that the book started from their POV. [The beginning scene is quite funny, actually. Zuzana is trying to convince Mik to pee on Kaz. XD] The two add much needed humor, and light in Karou’s life. Zuze and Mik get along pretty well with other people and are quite easygoing, so I wasn’t too surprised when the chimaera liked them better than Karou. Mik could play his violin for them, too, which they liked.

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POVs

This book has a lot of POVs. And not just one, or two, but a lot. You have Zuzana and Mik, Karou, Akiva, Liraz, random wild chimaera, Ziri, random angel [I think], random person, and group of random people. And that’s all I can remember. At least eight or nine. But I really liked the POVs. Unlike DoSB, where it’s only Akiva and Karou, you get to know what the opposing side is doing.

The White Wolf and Karou

[I’m not talking about their characters, but their relationship.] Thiago, AKA White Wolf, was in love with Karou when she was Madrigal. But she loved Akiva, and he got angry. He is very greedy and wants to get everything he desires. So when Karou comes to be with the chimaera, he is still very “in love” with her. But it isn’t really love in my opinion.

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I compared it to Snape and Lily’s relationship from Harry Potter. Snape is in love with Lily, but Lily loves James. Unlike DoSB, Lily and James die, leaving their son. Snape is absolutely devastated and then is mean to Harry.

In DoSB, Thiago becomes quite obsessed with Karou, as Snape does with Lily. He’s not really stalking her, but he tries to be near her a lot and things like that. That happens with Madrigal. Then, when Karou comes, he thinks he can win her back [even though he killed her].

He can’t. DUH.

But back to the point. That “love” Thiago has for Karou and Snape has for Lily is not real. Maybe in the beginning it was, especially with Snape, but soon it became a desire to have what they want. I think Thiago never really loved Karou the way Snape loved Lily in the beginning. He just wanted her because she was pure and Kirin. Maybe he saw other things in her, but that was the only evidence suggesting his “love” for her.

Can I just talk about a spoiler for a second?

*SPOILER ALERT*

When Thiago attempts to rape Karou, that is further proof that he does not love her. He just wants to win her so he can get what he wants. And the rape was a) digusting and b) not something I thought would happen, but when it did, it kind of made sense.

And then she kills him.

I was so happy; you don’t even know. I was like, “Die, die, die!” And she did it. :D Oh, nad the part about putting Ziri’s soul into Thiago’s body? Brilliant.

*SPOILER OVER*

This book was amazing. You better read it if you haven’t. [After DoSB, of course.]

Have you read this series? Will you now? Any more thoughts? Tell me in the comments below.

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Book Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Genre: YA Paranormal

Number of Pages: 418

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis: 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?

Discussion:

This book is pretty freaking amazing. I guess I’ve read a lot of great books lately, but this one is funny and demon/angel-y and has romance and is written beautifully and I JUST CAN’T EVEN.

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This is going to be a boring review. It will just be me fangirling and you reading and I just can’t even. It is too perfect for words. So let the fangirling discussion begin!

Karou. Was. My. Fave. SHE IS THE BEST. And the wishbone end part thingy—okay, so I kind of saw that THING coming, but I was unsure, so I think Taylor did a good job at dropping subtle hints. Karou was sweet and sarcastic and beautiful and amazing.

In class, we had to write about the book we were reading, and I wrote this about Karou:

“I also very much enjoy the main character, Karou. She is a mystery, and enigma perhaps, who makes wishes of blue hair and itches, and is, essentially, a master of two worlds. Karou has her normal life: a best friend, art school, ex, and sketches, and she has her secret, fantastical one, of monsters and trafficking for teeth, and her complex and unknown family.”

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The side characters were my baes, too. Zuzana and Mik were wonderful additions, and I’m glad to see them again in Days of Blood and Starlight.

The setting. It is set in Prague, in the Czech Republic, and thank you Taylor for choosing this country! I am and eighth Czech and have always wanted to visit there; now I feel like I have. The city is described wonderfully, painting magnificent images of everything from the little teashop to the cathedral at sunrise.*

*Which, by the way, was one of my favorite scenes.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone reminds me of Ink by Amanda Sun. I read it a few months ago. It is about an American girl who is sent to Japan to live with her aunt. Then she meets—who else—a boy who loves to draw, and he draws these creatures—that eventually come to life, threatening to destroy him, and the girl. I actually ordered Ink and the sequel, Rain on Amazon. At least, I added them to the cart. I’m not sure my parents will let me order all the books I added…

All in all, Daughter of Smoke and Bone was a wonderful read and I highly recommend it. If it is on your TBR, buy/order/read it ASAP. I also got an IRL friend of mine to read it—SQUEE!!!

Have you read Daughter of Smoke and Bone? Did you enjoy it? Tell me in the comments below.

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Stacking the Shelves With Many Books!

 

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So…I went to the bookstore AND the library today, and obtained 11 books in all. [If I did my math correctly.] I am so freaking excited, because–well, you’ll see below. >:)

Books I Bought

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Top to bottom:

Afterworlds by Scott Westerfield-I have been wanting this book ever since I saw a book blogger’s review of it. It’s already amazing.

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare-Finally!

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins-I’m giving it a second chance.

Uglies by Scott Westerfield-I have also been wanting this forever. High hopes!

Books I’m Borrowing

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Top to bottom:

Specials by Scott Westerfield

Pretties by Scott Westerfield

Extras by Scott Westerfield

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

And just because it’s free from the library and utterly cool…

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That’s it for Stacking the Shelves. Unfortunately, the library didn’t have Mockingjay, but hopefully next time I visit they will.

What did you think of my babies books? Tell me in the comments below.

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