Around the world, black hand prints 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 otherworldly 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?
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* Non-Spoiler Review*
Before I start this review, I never had heard of Laini Taylor until I stumbled across this trilogy for £6! I think I would have not read this book if it hadn’t been on sale. For some reason, I feel like I need to leave this little caveat before the review. One must always follow their intuition.
Right, let’s get into the review. I confess I am kind of conflicted with this book, the overall concept was interesting. There are three worlds in this book, the angel’s world, the human world and the chimaera world. Taylor’s writing was well done and it had a nice flow to it. Once I got past the initial slug of the first three chapters I was away. However, I may have mentioned this before and I know it will always be a thing for me. The fact that Karou was 17 years old bugged me immensely, her character came across as mature in situations I thought she (for her age) would have handled completely differently.
I felt the world-building took a little too long and the mystery behind many storylines ended up becoming a bit boring, I like a good mystery in a book but when there were three different mysteries running at the same time…it was a bit much. Yet, somehow, Taylor managed to tie two of them up by the end of the book – so I wasn’t too mad about it. But it did cause the middle to become a little frustrating.
This book was definitely set up to be a trilogy, I found the concept interesting while a little strung out and the two main characters Karou and Akiva we refreshing on many levels. However, there was a scene where Akiva broke down crying and it just didn’t suit his personality that had been presented throughout the book.
Overall, did I love the book? No, but I did see the potential in it. Will I read the other two? Yes, most likely but I am not in a rush to do so. I would recommend this book if you saw it on sale and wanted a YA fantasy to read.
Spice Rating: 1/6 – See my rating system here
Book Rating: 3/5