Book Report: Dreams of Gods & Monsters

Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini TaylorWhat’s The Buzz?: A few years ago, a handful of wildly popular trilogies hit the bookshelves. Among them, Lauren Oliver’s Delirium, Ally Condie’s Matched, and Veronica Roth’s Divergent. While those books all shared a vision of a dystopian future, Laini Taylor’s series opener Daughter of Smoke & Bone was something entirely unique, given its heavy fantasy elements blended with a world that was simply blind to the possibilities of magic and other universes existing so close to our own. Dreams of Gods & Monsters is the final entry into the series, and has been eagerly anticipated by anyone that’s been following Karou from the beginning.

What’s The Plot?: I’ll do my best to sum up the series as a whole, without giving away too many key elements for those of you that haven’t dived into the first book. Karou, a blue-haired (yup) beauty, is an art student in Prague. On the surface, her life is pretty normal, but in reality, she keeps very odd company. Specifically, half-beast, half-human creatures known as chimaera, a species that has long been at war with a breed of angels called the seraphim. Karou’s world is turn upside down and around multiple times through the series as the seraphim cross paths with her life. Dreams of Gods & Monsters, the final installment, hopes to resolve the everlasting battle between the sides – but on a grander scale, it’s also about protecting both Earth and Eretz, and perhaps all the galaxies, from an entire apocalypse that is greater than any of the characters could have imagined.

Do I Need To Read The Entire Series?: Absolutely you bet. And why wouldn’t you want to? If you’re tired of the dystopian YA stuff on the shelves, Daughter of Smoke & Bone is a genuine breath of fresh air. Karou and her best friend Zuzanna are full of wit and intelligence, unlike your typical simpering Bella Swan-esque protagonist. Beyond that, the writing seriously transcends the relatively young age of the characters. Calling to mind high fantasy blockbusters like Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones, this is a very accessible yet beautifully written trilogy that is really best consumed in one go (i.e. if you don’t start reading it till now, you’re in luck, as the books are relatively seamless which can make for a challenge if you, like myself, had to wait an entire year plus for each title to come out).

Fantasy, You Say? Tell Me More: Truth be told, I’m not usually a huge fantasy reader. I like my dystopian books and a bit of magic a la Harry Potter, but that true mythology-based fantasy novel usually isn’t my cup of tea. But Laini Taylor’s world, or worlds, as it were, are so richly imagined, it’s hard not to fall in love with them. She takes the things of nightmares and makes them utterly and heartbreakingly human. From the breathtaking description of the vengeful angels to the elaborate process of resurrecting the dead (a significant plot point in all three novels) to the BIG picture reveals within this third entry, there’s a lot of lovely writing and thinking here. But I’ll also point out, Taylor has a lot of fun with magic. She posits the idea of ‘What would you do?’ or say or think if you were to encounter any of her creations in the real world. The result is some tongue-in-cheek application of magic and wit throughout. Let me put it to you this way: be careful what you wish for.

Who Should Read This Book?: If you’ve already delved into the series, then now’s the time to finish it out – and possibly re-read the earlier entries. If you’re looking for a new, buzzy YA fix and haven’t encountered this one yet, then ditto. And if you love fantasy novels but are tired of waiting for George R.R. Martin to satisfy your needs, well then here you go. Oh, and if you enjoy a good, passionate romance, there are not one, but two epic love stories that thread together the books. Enjoy.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone seriesNow for those of you whose interest I’ve piqued, great news: I’m giving away a copy of the entire Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy to one lucky reader, including Dreams of Gods & Monsters! If you’re ready to get lost in this fantastical world, here’s how to enter:

1) Tell me in the comments below by May 16th, 2014 – why would you like to read this series?

2) Entries are limited to one per person / per email address / per household (or more if you score bonus entries). A random draw will be conducted on or around May 17th, 2014 to select the winners, who will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen in their place.

3) Entries are limited to Canadians that have reached the age of majority in their province. Quebec is not eligible for this promotion.

4) Bonus Entry #1: Like Hachette Book Group Canada on Facebook and leave a comment on the wall as to why you’re soooo psyched to read this series. You don’t have to mention CGG, but you do have to leave a link to your comment below.

5) Bonus Entry #2: Add Dreams of Gods & Monsters to your ‘to-read’ (and the others if you feel like it) list on Goodreads. Leave a link back to your to-read list on the page where the book is included to earn yet another bonus entry.

IMPORTANT: Please ensure all entries are submitted as separate comments. That means your base entry, and each of the bonus entries, should be 3 individual comments – otherwise your entries won’t be counted!

50 Responses to “Book Report: Dreams of Gods & Monsters”
  1. Joan G says:

    I want to read these books because you’ve got me excited by your comments.

  2. dorcontest says:

    I love epic romance. This series would keep me going from book to book. I am off for 6 weeks this summer due to surgery. This series would keep my busy and happy being lost in them.
    dorcontest a t gmail d o t com

  3. Evan says:

    I would like to check out the series as I’ve heard favourable reviews online of Laini Taylor’s work. Thanks.

  4. Holly says:

    It just sounds interesting. I like fantasy books.

  5. I love fantasy. Its awesome to be able to get lost in a good book and forget real life issues for awhile. This sounds like a very captivating series, I’ve heard quite a bit about it, and am very interested in reading these books. Thanks for the chance.
    andrea_hockeygirl at hotmail dot com

  6. neednewspace says:

    I have been waiting for this series to come to a close so that I can read all three back-to-back. I’ve had my eye on Laini Taylor’s books since the release of book one. Would love the chance to win the set. Thanks for hosting this great givraway!

  7. Susan says:

    I would like to read a trilogy with well-developed and intelligent characters.

  8. Angela Mitchell says:

    I’m late to the party I know but I’ve recently started reading some of the super popular YA series that are out there as well as some of the lesser known ones. I haven’t read this one yet and you give it such a glowing review, I am interested now:)

  9. Audrey Skinner says:

    I had not heard of this series of books but now that I have, I am intrigued. It would be a great win.

  10. linnett says:

    Would love to read this series, you always manage to writing interesting reviews, thanks

  11. GARRY S says:


  12. nikki robak says:

    I haven’t read these books but they do look interesting

  13. mousecat says:

    I’d like to read this series ’cause it sounds like something a little different from what I’ve been reading lately. The series sounds really good!

  14. cookie3 says:

    I’m trying to branch out in the types of books that I read. I haven’t tried fantasy as yet but would like to.

  15. Nicole B says:

    This sounds like a great series and I really need something new to read!

  16. Grace says:

    This series sounds great! I love books with female protagonists.

  17. Susan T. says:

    I’ve heard that this series is really unique and awesome! Bloggers and Goodreads don’t lie! Lol! I feel like I’m missing out because I haven’t gotten to it yet.

  18. Crystal Kordalchuk says:

    You’re comments intrigued me and it seems like a change of pace and breathe of fresh air from my usual reading choices.

  19. Darlene Boyle says:

    love trilogy boks

  20. kathy wilson says:

    need some summer reading

  21. Shawna says:

    I would love to read this trilogy

  22. diane p says:

    I’d like to read these – you’ve got me interested.

  23. intensev5 says:

    I would love to win them for my daughter — she loves this genre

  24. Carolyn says:

    my daughter would love to have a new series to read

  25. lucy kabatoff says:

    My granddaughter would love to read this series.

  26. truckerofbc says:

    These books look great to read especially Gods and Monsters

  27. Chris W says:

    Never really heard o this series but now that I’ve been introduced by this contest/page, sounds like an interesting read.

  28. Rekha says:

    Looking to expand my YA reading experiences, and I read a bit of SF&F so this sounds definitely appropriate. A modern mix of the vampire/werewolf/mage fantasy, also a bit urban like Dresden files, which I enjoyed.

  29. Kamla says:

    would love to have a new series to read

  30. Jacquie Hess says:

    I would love to read this series. I thoroughly enjoy sic fi and fantasy novels.

  31. I would like to read this series because they sound interesting, and are unlike other Fantasy books I have read in the past. Different than all the Vampire books we’ve been flooded with lately.

  32. Taps says:

    I agree with Wnedy’s comment.. Need something other than Vampires!

  33. Wanda Bergman says:

    I’d love to read this series because it looks like a unique storyline.

  34. Nancy says:

    It would be a whole new reading experience.

  35. Anne says:

    Nice to know of new series to read – this looks good.

  36. janicour says:

    I have started the series, would love to finish it! Fantasy books take me to a different world.

  37. aly3360 says:

    I’d like to read these books because they sound like they’re right up my alley. I think it’s a series i’ll really enjoy

    ayoung3360 (at) hotmail (dot) com

  38. Maegan Morin says:

    I would like to read this series because I have heard so many amazing things about it! I have been wanting to get my hands on it for a while now!

  39. Tanya C says:

    I want to read this because I love to read! I think I would enjoy this series and even if I don’t win, I’ll make sure I read them!

  40. Heather Arnould says:

    I love trilogies that give the chance to immerse yourself in another reality. This one sounds awesome.

  41. Aimee says:

    This would be great to take to the lake

  42. julia g says:

    I have read the first book and really enjoyed it; I would like the chance to read the rest.

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  1. […] chance for a bonus entry into my awesomesauce Laini Taylor Daughter of Smoke & Bone Trilogy giveaway! Tell me in the comments below: can you see yourself picking up this nifty lunchtime […]

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