Thursday, October 20, 2011

Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Book Description via Goodreads:

Paperback,420 pages
September 27, 2011, Little Brown

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 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?

Source: Bought

My Thoughts:

Set in romantic and enchanting Prague, the story breathed a life of its own. I was awestruck and mesmerized with its beauty. Taylor introduced a one of a kind heroine and painted a rich history of this world and of Elsewhere. In the middle of it all, was a love story like no other. My words could never, ever capture the beauty of it all.

Karou, the blue-haired heroine of Daughter of Smoke and Bone was truly an admirable character. She was unique, fierce, charming in her own way and strong. She was a true artist, an errand girl, a daughter and a friend. Having been raised in a shop filled with teeth and four Chimaeras – creatures that were part human, part animal of different kinds – she was bound to be different. She led two separate lives: one in the world, in Prague as an art student with the company of her sketchbook and Zuzana and the other, as a daughter and an errand girl for a teeth collector. Karou carried many, many secrets and it affected her relationship with anyone outside her Chimaera family.

Brimstone raised Karou in his shop. He was always working and always sending Karou on errands for him. He collected teeth and in exchange, he gave out wishes. He was a serious and wise figure who had fondness for Karou. He was a mystery.

Akiva was one of the three angels sent to the world to mark the portals that lead to Brimstone’s shop. With his wings of fire, golden eyes and good seraph looks, he was a sight to behold. He was incredibly strong and excessively attractive but he had an abyss-deep pain, sadness and longing that had made his gorgeous golden eyes look dead. He was the embodiment of purpose and vengeance, devoid of any emotion on his face until he met Karou. I found Akiva very interesting, surpassing all the other angel characters I’ve encountered in the past. Girls will be fangirling over this guy.

Akiva’s relationship with Karou was a hesitant but unavoidable one. The pull between them was just too strong for him to fight off. Like two pieces of a whole they had drifted close to each other, almost forgetting that they were supposed to be enemies. The attraction built up until it fizzed and sparked like lightning between them. They had cute, hesitant moments together, as well as awkward and silent ones. I like how it developed through the book. It seemed realistic enough for me.

Caught in the middle of chaos, Karou discovered that the world that Brimstone belonged to was smeared with the pain and blood of war between the Chimaeras and the angels. The world that Taylor created was so vivid, so full of life and death, joy and pain, wonder and magic. I never imagined anything like it. The history that came with the knowledge of this world – Eretz – was colorful, tragic, wondrous and overall, amazing. Taylor’s storytelling was perfect and it gave justice to the story – not rushing it and not slowing it. It had the right pace.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone is my favorite paranormal romance novel of the year. It’s beautifully written and perfectly delivered, with well-developed characters, two vivid worlds, a colorful history and an amazing love story. Hypnotic, breathtaking and absolutely unforgettable, this book will take readers to faraway places and let them experience everything from love to action to tragedy. I highly recommend this to paranormal romance readers! Everyone should read this! I mean it, it’s THAT amazing.



  1. Wow. I keep hearing awesome things about this book! I am so going to put this on my TBR pile. I cannot wait to get hypnotized and be taken to another world!

    Awesome review Precious! :)

  2. Omg Omg Omg Omg OMG this book. This book is just..... *SPEECHLESS* And when Brodie is speechless, you know something out of the ordinary is going on haha. Amazing review, Precious! DOSAB just blew me away. By far, my favourite paranormal romance of the year too!

    I had to go back and reread certain parts when things were.... revealed.... because they made so much more sense and were filled with all the more power. Like the bridge with Akiva? That was just so raw and full of emtoion and MY HEART *clutches* Damn you, you're making me want to reread haha.

  3. I just brought this! Your depictions of Karou and Akiva make me want to read this NOW!