It is not every day that I read a book that leaves me wondering so much about how the world exactly fits together and what parallels there are to our own world. Beware, this is by no means a bad thing. The worldbuilding was superb and thus left me completely invested into this mysterious continent that still suffers from the Blink, and no place so much so as Voortyashtan, once the city of the Goddess of War, Death and Destruction and no completely in ruins.
The story takes place roughly five years after the events in the first book, City of Stairs. When you look at the review I wrote about it, almost a year and half ago, you can see I really enjoyed the aspects of the world that were revealed, but the book in total didn't live up to my great expectations. It's funny really, because now, when I think back to City of Stairs, I feel like I liked it a lot more. Time can change our perceptions of how we think of books, but either way, because of this, I was looking forward again to reading City of Blades, especially since the world really is a fascinating one.
I could spend hours talking about the world and everything, but I won't. Just let me tell you that the death of the Divinities definitely caused a lot more problems than were foreseen. For the Saypuri, winning the war certainly wasn't the end of their hardship and problems. The society consists of a lot different layers, often with complicated relations between them. I always like to put a date on when the story is taking place, but it is really difficult with this one. It's 17something in their calculations, but cars have been invented, as well as photography. Other things are more primitive still. What I really liked is that this is one of the first books where there actually seems to be a gender equality. It is neither conservative nor feminist, but I got the feeling that literally any job in the book could have been done by anyone, also without anyone making a big deal about it. It was really refreshing.
I found this books much less confusing than the first one, some questions actually get answered. For some reason I could connect to the story better, and Mulaghesh was a more likeable main character. Her struggle seemed genuine and was very interesting. I know it is a bit early to say this but I think this could very well be one of my favourite books of the year!
I received a free copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review!