This has been a rollercoaster of a book. I went from loving it to becoming irritated by some of the elements, then right back to loving it towards the end. I love Laini Taylor to bits and pieces, but I am surprised by some of the writing devices in DoSaB. First off, Karou came off as selfish, rude and downright self-serving. I didn't really care for her at all. And Akiva was fine, yet I felt he got some of the "Edward Cullen" treatment by the main character. I do not want to read 50 pages describing how beautiful he was, and how Karou and him were SO IN LOVE right off the bat. But I will say that the external storyline and the world were BEAUTIFUL. And introducing Madrigal to the story helped boost the chic factor. I LOVED the starcrossed storyline of Akiva and Madrigal meeting and falling for one another. The backflash gave the story a solid backbone, and I found Mad so much more attractive than Karou. My main interest was not the bland "love story", but in the story of Brimstone and Karou's dynamic. Building Brimstone's character helped me connect to the story. I found it shocking what role he played in Karou's life, and how he really embodied the sense of peace and hope. I'm going to give the 2nd book a chance, because I am hoping that Karou matures and takes on Madrigal's personality. Not the best Laini book, but bits and pieces really allowed her talent to shine and gain my fangirlish love of her stories.