That can't be the end! Dreams of Gods and Monsters was full of interesting twists and surprises. The end though... There was an end, and then there were so many more chapters to go. Not an epilogue, but chapters of story still to happen. I loved the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series and Dreams of Gods and Monsters was a good conclusion. I loved Karou, I loved Akiva. There will be vague spoilers ahead.
The ending was not the ending. There was so much build up to fighting Jael and the Dominion at the Vatican, that I thought there would be more. More blood, more loss. The twist was good though. Clever. I would have liked a little more time with Haxaya. I can only imagine what they said to her off the page. I would have like to see what the ramifications on Earth were. When Jael comes back through the portal though, when he sees Liraz and the Shadows That Live, that was pretty wicked. I would have liked to dive deeper into what happened to him after, and what happened at the capital. It was a conclusion that didn't feel conclusive enough. But we leave the conflict with the Seraphim and Chimera behind.
Instead, the real conclusion is with the Stelians. I wish there could have been more Eliza and Scarab. That's where the real power is. Karou says as much. The Stelians can't be bothered with the Seraphim and Chimera, and finding out about the Seraphim's history, wow. The Stelians are the ones who hold it all, Akiva's life, his future. I loved all of that, but wish there was more. I wanted more with Eliza and the people she knew from Earth. I wanted more with fake grandma. I was so happy with what happened with Liraz and Ziri. I was scared for a while, but then, by the end. I'm okay with not knowing exactly what happens with them, because it was implied and the implications were fantastic. The growth and change in their characters, they were the only ones where I was okay with the conclusion. For a book that was over 600 pages, I wouldn't have minded if it was longer.
That final sequence though, that final time we see Karou and Akiva, that was beautiful. I loved how their lives came full circle. It wasn't all perfectly tied up in a bow though. Even after Jael lost, they still had things to do, things that kept them apart. That was almost realistic. Happy endings aren't neat, war isn't neat. The ends don't always mean that people are reunited immediately. There's still work to do, rebuilding. In that way, I really liked the ending.
I thought that there should have been more. There's still a threat to Eretz, a subsequent threat to Earth. There are people whose stories don't feel done. I hope that Laini Taylor continues their story. Another book would pull everything together, tie up all the threads. It doesn't and probably shouldn't centre of Karou and Akiva. They would still be important characters, but it should be a story about Eliza, Scarab and the Stelians. I think there's still a story to be told there, more of Laini Taylor's world to be explored. Maybe she plans to write another book, maybe not. I can certainly wish for one though. Dreams of Gods and Monsters was exciting and hard to put down. I'm glad I finally read the final book in this fantastic series.