Monday, October 17, 2011

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone
By: Laini Taylor
Release: September 27th, 2011
Pages: 420 (hardcover)
Publisher: Little, Brown, & Company
Source: Vine Program + Bought
Around the world, black handprints 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 grown 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 more at Goodreads.
Undeniably enthralling, Daughter of Smoke and Bone is the standout story of the year. And how could it not be, with blue-haired, artsy Karou and the mystery of her past at the heart of the story? With a beaded necklace capable of granting wishes and more talents than she can reasonably account for, Karou fascinated  me as a lead character right from the first page. Whether it's the enchanting (and real) characters in she draws in her sketchbook or Karou's amusing antics against her scumbag ex-boyfriend, every aspect of Karou's unusual life will make you even more curious to continue reading.

But it's not until Akiva - smoldering and intense Akiva - appears that Karou's world gets a little more interesting...and complicated. Laini Taylor takes readers through a journey of love, heartbreak, secrets, and revelations in Daughter of Smoke and Bone. The settings for the story don't disappoint either, whether it's Brimstone's shop1, Poison Kitchen in Prague, or the lively streets of Marrakesh, every word makes this story easily visualized. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a story completely worthy of being on your wishlist - or better yet, on your "favorites" bookshelf. 

Highlights: Utterly unique and completely captivating, Laini Taylor's words keep you glued to the pages. Taylor managed to make her characters 3-dimensional, from Karou, Zuzanna, Brimstone and all the others. But it's the story overall that I loved the most - I was over angels and demons, but Taylor's unique outlook and twist on everything managed to interest me. Even the romance made sense, and I love how it started out.

Lowlights: The latter half was interesting, but felt slightly disjointed from the beginning of the book. The cut-off ending2 about killed me, yet I've read worse cliffhangers. Honestly though, I was surprised that it ended where it did. 

1 Coolest shop ever. Seriously. Even if it's a little twisted and creepy (what with all the teeth and Karou's very unusual adopted family). 
2 Putting in a "To be continued" or cliffhanger seems to be a common theme among series lately, much to my dislike. But I'll give Taylor a pass this time, because otherwise, this story kept me hooked. 


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  1. I loved this book so much although I have to agree with you that the ending could have been better. But at least it will make sure that I'll pick up a copy of the sequel as soon as possible. :D

    Great review, thanks for sharing,
    Carina @ Fictional Distraction

  2. I am half way through this one and while I love the writing and Karou, I am hoping things get a tad more exciting. Great review!

  3. That shop does sound cool. Great review.

  4. That shop does sound cool. Great review.

  5. Ugghhh! I'm so torn right now. I'm debating starting Daughter of Smoke and Bone or Anna Dressed in Blood. I see this review and decided DoSaB then I see in the sidebar that you recommend Anna!
    That's no help at

  6. Loved this book! Like you, I was over angels (gah, another one!) but this one was so very different...awesome.

  7. I LOVED DoSaB. I'm so glad you did too! And the ending just about killed me as well, so you're not alone. Great review, Lea!

  8. Great review, Lea! I have been reading so many great reviews for this one; I need to get my hands on a copy. You have me excited for it! It's sounds so unique!

  9. I want to read this more and more now. I know a lot of bloggers have received Daughter of Smoke and Bone lately and I have yet to read it so I do feel out of the loop a little bit.

  10. Oh, I'm so glad to see you loved this one as much as I did! It's such a rich and imaginitive book! Great review, Lea :)

  11. I had no plans to buy this book, I'd never even read the summary, but I've read so many positive reviews that I'm interested in it now. It seems a lot of people are irritated with the abrupt ending but enjoyed the story so much that like you, they'll ignore it.

  12. Yet another rave review! I need to read this and I need to read this soon. Especially because, like you said, I'm kind of over angel stories - and I'm hoping this one will change my mind!

  13. I loved this book so much!! It's definitely one of my favorites reads of 2011.