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Emma 2009

Angel book comparisons!

So, even though it’s not remotely close to as good as The Queen of Attolia (but then, how many books not written by Jane Austen are?), Daughter of Smoke and Bone and its sequel, Days of Blood and Starlight, it does do well in comparison to another book series I read last year: the Fallen series by Lauren Kate. Both Daughter and Fallen play on the War in Heaven classical angels and demons scenario. Both dream of peace. Both have “angel in love with a demon" at their center.

But while Fallen rests firmly in the “reskinned Twilight" territory, Daughter is clearly a much more powerful creation. (Note Well: I quite enjoy Twilight, so my problem with reskinning it has more to do with the lack of vim and vigor than the concept in itself.) Luce, the heroine of Fallen, fits all the worst criticisms of Bella Swan, and if you thought Bella’s mumblings about Edward’s sparkling was annoying, Luce’s ramblings about Daniel’s wings drove me up the wall. While Karou and her hilariously tiny con fuoco Czech friend Zuzana are happy to see a pretty guy, their relationships are based around character, rather than abs, and they both have a lot more than “mope" in their emotional repertoire.

Like Fallen, a lot of the fun of the Daughter series is the supporting angel and demon characters. I kept wishing Luce would go somewhere else and let Arriane be the focus of the story (sadly, when she did in a short story, it was just about as drippy as Luce’s). Even though Karou never tries my patience in the same way, Liraz, Ziri, and Issa hint at stories that could be told, and delight when they show up.

Also, I will definitely read Dreams of Gods and Monsters. Not looking forward to it quite as much as Princess Academy: Dragonfly Sisters or the fifth Queen’s Thief book, but I will happily read it, hoping for a happy ending for the chimera girl and the angel she loves and their dream of peace spread across all worlds.
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