Book Review: Unravel the Dusk (The Blood of Stars #2) by Elizabeth Lim

Book Review: Unravel the Dusk (The Blood of Stars #2) by Elizabeth LimUnravel the Dusk by Elizabeth Lim
Series: The Blood of Stars #2
Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers on July 7, 2020
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: 416
Buy on Amazon

The thrilling sequel to SPIN THE DAWN, a magical series steeped in Chinese culture.

Maia Tamarin’s journey to sew the dresses of the sun, the moon and the stars has taken a grievous toll. She returns to a kingdom on the brink of war. The boy she loves is gone, and she is forced to don the dress of the sun and assume the place of the emperor’s bride-to-be to keep the peace.

But the war raging around Maia is nothing compared to the battle within. Ever since she was touched by the demon Bandur, she has been changing . . . glancing in the mirror to see her own eyes glowing red, losing control of her magic, her body, her mind. It’s only a matter of time before Maia loses herself completely, but she will stop at nothing to find Edan, protect her family, and bring lasting peace to her country.

YA fantasy readers will love the sizzling forbidden romance, mystery, and intrigue of UNRAVEL THE DUSK.

It’s going to be difficult to write an unspoilery review, but since this book doesn’t come out for another six months, I’m going to do my best.

Spin the Dawn (The Blood of Stars #1) was my favorite book of 2019. I loved everything about it. You can read that review here if you’re not sure you should read this series (spoiler alert, you totally should). Imagine my sheer delight when I was almost instantly approved for the sequel on Netgalley the day after it was uploaded.

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Literally me when I saw the email.

When we last saw Maia, her cover had been blown. The news was out that she was not, in fact, a boy, but a girl *GASP* who had won the role of Royal Tailor. What the court doesn’t know is that her victory came at a price. She now is slowly but surely turning into a demon.

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Creepy black eyes included.

We get to see quite a different side of most of the characters introduced in book 1. Maia, of course, is going through some stuff with the whole demon thing, and she struggles for most of the book with staying true to herself and her country, working to ignore the demon that is literally whispering into her mind. Meanwhile Edan, now mostly magic-less, works to essentially re-learn how to live with far less magic. Lady Sarnai takes on a more important role, and we see her step onto the board as a major political player.

Everything that made me love the first book is still here: the magic, the romance, Amana’s dresses, the palace politics, Maia’s continued journey of self discovery…and then we get war added on top of that, just to add some tension.

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Throw in a few more almost impossible to kill demons (not of the Maia variety), some enchanted paper birds, more Maia and Edan quests, and you’ve got the makings of a truly breathtaking sequel. It all leads up to a satisfying ending, though I wish it could have gone on longer. This series is firmly planted on my favorites list now, and I cannot wait to see what else Elizabeth Lim has in store for us in the future.

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No pressure Liz. You’re a star in our book already.

5 Stars

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