Days of Blood and Starlight – Laini Taylor
The story of angels and chimaera continues in this second book of the trilogy. In a parallel realm to Earth, where angels and chimaera have been fighting a 1000 year war, where there is no longer any appreciation why this war started, other than domination of one race over another, events transpired that completely upset the balance of power and now one side is struggling to survive. Karou and Akiva have split apart quite bitterly after certain revelations, and Karou has gone to a very dark place and supported a bitter foe while seeking revenge.
The love story of Karou and Akiva is quite tumultuously, where events continue to conspire to drive them apart and with every interaction, you wonder – will they or won’t they bury the hatchet (metaphorically and literally). A very human emotion for non-humans. They subdue their true intentions and feelings in order to protect their vulnerability, and they often misread the other or misguidedly feel they are protecting the other. The story can’t be described as romantic, but love and the ability to hurt those that we love dearest drives the decisions and actions they take.
We are introduced to a wealth of characters that we have seen develop and transform as exposure to a wider truth is gradually revealed. Good and evil are heavily intertwined and ultimately power corrupts, where the appetites of ambitious men know no bounds.
The level of minutia was really inspiring in the first book, as a vivid world was painted for us with all its history, myths and legends. The detailed narration regarding motivations and the justified actions of each character was really sound but there just seems a bit too much of it in this book and it often stifled the dialogue. I started to feel that this book was being expanded to create the trilogy. There are very important developments in this book but did it take a full book to convey these? This is only a small criticism of the story/book is still amazing.