My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Happiness wasn’t a mystical place to be reached or won - some bright terrain beyond the boundary of misery, a paradise waiting for them to find it - but something to carry doggedly with you through everything, as humble and ordinary as your gear and supplies. Food, weapons, happiness
They belonged to each other to hold.
Holy mother of words! This was beautiful. More than what Akiva and Karou have gone through, there’s a whole group of supporting characters that contribute to me loving this series even more than I did when I first started it. There are threads of emotion that link one to another then another then another; but better, there are individual stories, too.
Let’s work our way in (oh, and how do I do this without giving anything away?) Book One had it clear: she’s on one side and he, the other. Book Two complicates things further, by delving into what that divide meant for the two of them. (cue: hearts breaking, the book world over.) Book Three allows a peek into the specifics of both their worlds; and what continuing in that way meant. So things change. And behold! Me, loving these books even more.
It’s not like there’s anything new to this set up because strip it down and it’s clear we have read stories like these before – star crossed loves and all that; great best friends, too. But it’s Taylor’s choice of words that render the story of Akiva and Karou, Zuz and Mik, Misbegotten and Beast an experience
I was feeling everything she wanted me to. The conflict and doubt they each experienced had me wanting to sit them down for a talking to; those instances of fun that inevitably came with Zuzana in tow or even those sweet ones between her and Violin Boy, while out of place given all the tense things they’re all faced, brought it home, they all definitely have a part in the story told.
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