Night of Cake and Puppets (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #2.5) blurb:
It’s a treasure map.
And the treasure?
There she is,
In the centre of the page,
Zuzana is the treasure.
Life doesn’t need magic to be magical.
(But a little bit sure doesn’t hurt.)
Petite though she may be, Zuzana is not known for her timidity. Her best friend, Karou, calls her “rabid fairy”, her “voodoo eyes” are said to freeze blood, and even her older brother fears her wrath. But when it comes to the simple matter of talking to her crush, Mik, also known as Violin Boy, her courage deserts her.
Now enough is enough! Zuzana is determined to seize the night, and she has a fistful of magic and a plan. It’s a wonderfully elaborate treasure hunt of a plan that will take Mik all over Prague on a cold winter’s night before finally leading him to the treasure: herself! Violin Boy is not going to know what hit him.
This is genuinely one of the sweetest novellas that I have ever read. I won’t go into it too much because it’s not excessively long, but Zuzana is one of my favourite characters in the Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy, and suffice to say, the story of how she and Mik started dating is by far the cutest book ever.
The story is about the time that Zuzana worked up the courage to send Violin Boy on a grand adventure across Prague. Zuze, along with the help of some scuppies gifted by Karou, works her own unique brand of magic to show Mik the night of his life on a magical quest with the greatest prize of all at the end — Zuze. Now, I don’t really think I’m spoiling this for you by saying that, as you’ll probably want to actually read A Daughter of Smoke and Bone before you get into this, otherwise I’m not entirely sure it’ll make much sense. And if you have read the trilogy then you already know how this book ends…
The book is split into a couple of chapters at a time from each of their perspectives. But it does this so well as they are actually not physically together until the very end of the book where they meet up properly. The reason that this is done so well is that you get to ‘see the magic happen’ with Mik, and then you get to hear how Zuze does it when we switch back to her POV.
The illustrations in this book are quite magical on their own. The entire book is illustrated by Jim Di Bartolo and they are amazing — and here’s something for all you book nerds out there: Jim and Laini are together in real life. So sweet!
All in all, despite being a novella, this book was super cute and while it didn’t really add that much to the story, I loved it all the same.