Night of Cake and Puppets by Laini Taylor, illustrated by Jim Di Bartolo
Expected publication: September 12th 2017 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Goodreads Summary: In this stand-alone companion to the New York Times bestselling Daughter of Smoke & Bone series comes the story of Mik and Zuzana’s fantastical first date—as a gorgeously illustrated gift edition with bonus content included.
Petite though she may be, Zuzana is not known for 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 Mik, or “Violin Boy,” her courage deserts her. Now, enough is enough. Zuzana is determined to make the first move, 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 leading him to the treasure: herself! Violin Boy is not going to know what hit him.
New York Times bestselling author Laini Taylor brings to life a night only hinted at in the Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy—the magical first date of fan-favorites Zuzana and Mik. Originally published as an ebook, this new print edition will include breathtaking black and white illustrations, plus bonus content in a gorgeous package perfect for new and current fans of the series.
Review: Earlier this year, Strange the Dreamer was my first experience with Laini Taylor’s words. I instantly fell in love with her writing. So I was really eager to get into her previous series, Daughter of Smoke and Bone. When I read Daughter of Smoke and Bone, I really loved Zuzana’s character. She was so spunky and had a great sense of humor. Her friendship with Karou reminded me a lot of my own friendship with one of my best friends. When I heard about Night of Cake and Puppets I was so excited to be able to read about how Zuzana and Mik come together because, let’s face it, they’re absolutely adorable. I’m a big sucker for romance and big romantic gestures so this seemed like it was going to be a really great read. Plus there is just something special about having Laini and her husband, illustrator Jim Di Bartolo, teaming up to take this book to the next level. I read this ARC in a few hours because I could not put it down! The first section is from Zuzana’s POV and it totally took me back to those times when I had a huge thing for a guy and wasn’t sure how to approach that. I also really loved the little flashback stories of when Zuzana and Karou first became friends. One of the things I really love about Laini Taylor’s writing is that it is so visually descriptive without overdoing it so it is really easy to visualize the scenes in your head. I’ve dreamed of going to Prague for years and with her help, I feel almost as if I have been there. When it got to the section from Mik’s POV, I couldn’t help but swoon. This story was everything I hoped it would be and more. The illustrations that were included in the ARC were absolutely incredible so I can’t wait to see how they look in the final copies!