Author: Laini Taylor
Publisher: Blackstone Audio/Little, Brown Books
Released: April 8, 2014
Series: Daughter of Smoke and Bone #3
Duration: 18 hours, 8 minutes
Source: Audiobook from my public library
"In this thrilling conclusion to the Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy, Karou is still not ready to forgive Akiva for killing the only family she's ever known.
When a brutal angel army trespasses into the human world, Karou and Akiva must ally their enemy armies against the threat—and against larger dangers that loom on the horizon. They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves—maybe even toward love.
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."___________________________________________________
"Nerve thrum and screaming blood, wild and churning and chasing and devouring and terrible and terrible and terrible...
A voice. Bright light, and Eliza fell awake."
I would like to start out by noting that the audiobook is over 18 hours long. I mean... that's insane. It took me forever to get through it - even though I loved it. Guess I just didn't have enough empty days to do a marathon listen. *Also, this is a review of the third book, so expect some spoilers for the first two in the series!!*
This is the conclusion to the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series, so there's a lot to wrap up. Karou and Akiva are on the brink of an all-out war, but they have to bring unlikely allies together to succeed. Several worlds hang in the balance while they try to save as many people as possible. There are lots of people to bring back from the dead, lots of magic to learn about, lots of relationships hanging in the balance, and lots of enemies butting heads.
As you can imagine, there are tons of loose ends to tie up in this final book. The biggest being the relationship between Karou and Akiva - it starts out really rocky because of what happened in the last book. They really aren't sure about each other throughout the story, lots of second-guessing. But having to work so closely together to save the world(s) really pulls them back. Really, you're left until the acutal epilogue to find out their future.
There is a new character introduced in this book - and is part of the quote above. Eliza... and she changes the tide of the entire story. She's raised as a human in a very strange situation. Her family is part of a cult that believes they are descended from angels. Eliza is the first to actually exhibit some signs that something is different and she is treated like a prophet. She escapes that world, but she still has frightening dreams and can never fully shake it off. Honestly, I think she became my favorite character in the whole trilogy. I wish she had been introduced sooner, but I think the flow worked really well in this final book.
You also get a whole new group of people who are fully invested in the saving of their world. I'm not going to go into them, because they really change the course of the ending. They have an extreme relationship with magic and the ability to quickly dispose of people that are threatening their world.
One other thing that I found very interesting about this book is the treatment of the angels that appear on earth. What do you think would happen if thousands of angels came from the sky and landed in the Vatican City? Thinking about the different groups of people and how they would handle things - the fanatics, the cynics, the world of science... etc.
In the audio version, it's a little crazy with the various viewpoints. Things change quickly - especially in the end when the pace of the whole book kicks up a notch. I'm sure there are clear breaks in the actual text, but it doesn't come across as easily in the audio. But I will say that I have continued listening to this series (instead of getting a print copy) because the reader is so wonderful.
Honestly, if you haven't read this series and you're into urban fantasy, angel stories, otherwordly lurv... then you should really pick up this series. Plus side: it's now complete! You won't be waiting for the next one to come out. The ending does leave a little room for the imagination and there are so many side characters that I wonder if there will be a spinoff. One can only hope!
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Living for the Books
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Notes in the Margin
Always Lost in Stories
Love is Not a Triangle
A Belle's Tales