Review–Dreams of Gods and Monsters (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #3) by Laini Taylor

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Dreams of Gods and Monsters (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1)
 
by Laini Taylor
 
Summary: 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?


Source: I purchased a Kindle copy.

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Review:

This series is one of the best fantasy series I’ve ever read. It was amazing. Stunning. Beautiful. Unique. Captivating. Epic. Terrifying. Haunting. Hopeful. It was just… everything.

This series had extremely complex characters who were very well developed. Dreams of Gods and Monsters introduced a few more characters, but it wasn’t hard to get to know them. Their stories mattered right away, due to the author’s ability to create such multi-dimensional characters in a short amount of time. Unexpected friendships were forged in this book, but they impacted me just as much as the main connection between Karou and Akiva, though some of them spanned only a few chapters.
The Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy was an epic story. The plot was like nothing I’ve ever seen, which is very hard to do with a premise and beginning of a devil and an angel falling in love. But the mythology was new, refreshing, and very well developed. So many YA fantasies appear to take on some new idea that sounds awesome and they fail at world building or what you end up getting is the same mythology called by a new name. This series was truly unique and actually developed. This is a story that didn’t forget about the loose ends or the lesser explored areas. It grabbed them as needed and wove them back into the plot. I don’t think I encountered a single plot hole, which was crazy considering all of the dying and resurrecting that was happening. The lies, the secrets, the magic… it all made sense.

The trilogy was filled with emotion and heavy subjects. When losses were incurred, I felt them. When hope was lost, I truly grasped the despair hanging from the characters. When Zuzana cracked a lame joke, a smile tugged at my lips just as they did on Karou’s face. These characters were deeply affected by each and every event and I felt it all. This was not a fun fantasy with teen characters who fall in love and get distracted. They were like real people, trying to steal their precious moments of romance in the midst of battle.

I rarely reread books, but I can tell you that I will reread these. I’ve put myself on the waiting list for my library to listen to the audiobooks. A fellow blogger recommended listening to them and I imagine it would help me savor the amazing writing.

I highly recommend this series. There aren’t enough words to praise it. It’s a must read for anyone who enjoys fantasy concepts. Like any good fantasy, it created this awesome unique world that is still relevant to ours. Lessons, themes, philosophical questions, and choices matter and can be applied to real life, which is one of my favorite things about fantasy. It’s not just a made up world, but a made up world that tells us things about our own world.

The only criticism I have for the series is that I dislike the covers. While cool looking, I think they make the story blend into other YA books, especially paranormal romances. It doesn’t look like a book that can be taken seriously at first glance. I wish the covers didn’t feature a giant face with masks, but I think it came out at a time when that was all the rage for any book cover. I wish it wasn’t such a trendy cover, if that makes sense.

5%2520star
 
If I could give this more stars, I would.
Quotes:
Or were they skeptical? Some would be, but who would be louder? Who was always louder? The righteous. The fearful.

“What do they want?” she asked. “I think that’s the bigger question. They came from somewhere.” There is another universe. “And if that somewhere has nothing to do with ‘God’ ”—It doesn’t.—“then they’re acting on their own behalf. And that’s scary.”

Soon the sun would rise. Seeing it from here, such a horizon, and such a sky, it really made you mindful of being plastered by gravity to a giant, hurtling rock, and from there it was a hopscotch to picturing the immensity that surrounded it: the universe, too big for the mind to compass, and that was only the one universe. Too big for the human mind, perhaps.

Absence has presence, sometimes, and that was what she felt. Absence like crushed-dead grass where something has been and is no longer. Absence where a thread has been ripped, ragged, from a tapestry, leaving a gap that can never be mended. That was all she felt.

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