I have read and reviewed the previous book of the series: here
I read the first book a long time ago (actually I read this one a while back as well and have only delayed typing this up). I was not sure I was ever going to find and read it till I saw it sitting very enticingly on a shelf in my library. At the end of the first book, the fences between the multiple sides in the narrative broke. People (for want of a more generic term for all the sub-divisions) have to confront each other and their collective pasts.
The concept, world-building and the unravelling of the years of secrets were unique. I am yet to read another story like it, even if I tried to synthesize it into a convenient blurb, it would still not convey the actual narrative. As a reader, one has to read the revelations as they come.
There is a ‘but’ that follows all this praise. I do not know if it is because of the genre or the fact that I may not be in the target age bracket, but a large portion (and I mean a big chunk) of the narration was used to depict the physical expressions, explorations of our lead pair’s relationship. I drowned so much in their emotions that I wanted to get out of it and enjoy the world-building, but was not given a chance. I got the intensity of their feelings with just a few critical scenes and could have done with lesser chapters focused on just that.
Reading this book without having read the first would ensure that nothing in it will make appropriate sense. It was a satisfying culmination of the concept, but it took me a very long time to actually finish it, making this one of my most counterintuitive rating vs review combination.