Title: Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1)
Author: Laini Taylor
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Blurb: Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.
In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.
And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.
Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.
When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?
My Review: You know those books that you read and enjoy but it’s the ending that blows you away. That’s where I am. Completely blown away. As in WTF and when can I get my hands on the sequel?
I blame my bad memory for not remembering what made me want to read this book. (I swear I’m like an elderly person looking for glasses that I’m already wearing.) But I after adding this book to my TBR shelf, I was immediately assaulted (haha… You know who you are) by people who love this book. As being assaulted by this book lover is a rare occurrence for me I took their words seriously and got right to it. So: a pretty cover, a girl with blue hair and a book that carries the air of mystery… I was all over it.
Taylor is great at spinning a web to catch her readers. From the very first paragraph I was intrigued and hooked. She does a great job of easing the reader into the story. I was little more than a hungry baby atop a high chair as she teased and baby fed me a story I just couldn’t get enough of.
“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well.“
The two protagonists in this book are Karou and Akiva and they are like today’s otherworldly version of Romeo and Juliet. Need I once again mention that I love romance? Well where the romance in this book is involved, it seemed to fall into the category of insta-love and I’m ok with that… But then like with everything else in this book Taylor says to heck with that and throws so many surprises and plot twist that left my head spinning. Their romance is weird but seems realistic and it’s sweet and makes you want to swoon like a little girl.
“Karou was plagued by the notion that she wasn’t whole. She didn’t know what this meant, but it was a lifelong feeling, a sensation akin to having forgotten something. She’d tried describing it to Issa once, when she was a girl. ‘It’s like you’re standing in the kitchen, and you know you went in there for a reason, but you can’t think of what that reason is, no matter what.’ “
So Karou, as you can see, is a girl who feels lost and she struggles with that everyday of her life. She appears to be a regular teen, with regular teen issues and a very creative imagination. Then Taylor begins to reveal who Karou really is. The character development that Karou undergoes is vast and impressive. So much happens to her to change and shape her that by the last chapter of the book she is someone completely different. Taylor does a great job of changing the character so much while maintaining a sense of Karou. She is never forgotten or lost.
Because I feel that anymore than this, I’ll be writing a complete spoiler, I’ll stop here. So for you, reader who is considering picking this book up, I’ll end this with a warning. Remember that Taylor weaves a fine web and you are walking into a trap. One full of mystery, suspense, romance, betrayal and action. She will suck you into this story and she won’t let you go. Unlike most books that release you from their hold once you are done reading them, this one will leave in withdrawal desperate for a sequel.