Saturday, December 22, 2012

Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

Title: Daughter of Smoke & Bone
Author: Laini Taylor
Publisher:  Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Release Date: September 27, 2011
My Rating: 5 Stars *****
Pages: 420

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 otherworldly 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?

Daughter of Smoke & Bone is a novel by Laini Taylor. I was a little worried about how the writing would be but I'd heard so many good things about this book that I decided to just plunge in and read it. I was not disappointed. At all. For a first time novelist, Laini Taylor hit the nail on the head, meeting her mark perfectly. The writing was nearly perfect. It was descriptive, it flowed, and above all it was unique. I'm very impressed with this debut novel and need more Laini Taylor.

The plot was stupendous. It was always moving and yet it still managed to pick up 2/3 of the way through the book.  Karou was never normal. Her "family" consisted of otherworldly beings and she could never tell her friends the truth. But she was happy. She enveloped herself in art and school and lived as normal a life as possible. All that changes when she finds out about a war that destroyed numerous lives and is destroying her family's. When she meets Akiva, she realizes who she is and what she must do. Even if it puts her life at stake.

The main characters of the story were Karou and Akiva. What I liked most about Karou was how bad she was. She loved her family and friends, would do anything for them, but wasn't afraid to stand up for herself either. Akiva was mourning a lost love and it showed. However, he used this to better himself and help Karou. Karou's family did what they had to do during the war. They were good people and loved Karou deeply. They appeared a bit scary and mysterious at times but it was all revealed differently at the end. Kauro's best friend, Zuzana was hilarious. She always lightened the mood and was a great best friend to Karou. These characters were a major reason why the story was so good. Without them, it would've been a grand ship that sunk without the supports.

There wasn't really anything I didn't like. I know that makes me sound like a suck-up but this book was fantastic. It was a thrilling read and I need to go out and buy the next book. Now. I can't believe I hadn't read this book a year ago but I'm kinda glad because it means I don't have to wait for Days of Blood and Starlight.

I would recommend this book to any hardcore ya reader. If you like ya you want to read this book. Especially if you love fantasy. It has a great fantasy element to it, which made the story. Laini Taylor is definitely a new favorite of mine.

Memorable Quotes
  • “Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well.”
  • “Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there's no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.”  
  • “It is a condition of monsters that they do not perceive themselves as such. The dragon, you know, hunkered in the village devouring maidens, heard the townsfolk cry 'Monster!' and looked behind him.”
  • “Oh, Hell. Must. Mate. Immediately.”
  • “Hey! My body may be small, but my soul is large. It’s why I wear platforms. So I can reach the top of my soul.”   


  1. LOVE LOVE LOVE!!! One of my favorite reads ever! Writing is just beautiful! So many good quotes and you picked some of my favorites! Second book is just as good!

    1. :) I know, it was amazing! Laini Taylor can definitely write! Oh that's good. Aaaah I'm so excited to read the second book! I can't wait until I get my hands on it :P

  2. Daughter Of Smoke And Bone is my single favorite book. It hit the nail on the head of all my favorite things in a book, and Laini Taylor's writing is just amazing.

    I loved your review! Though this wasn't Taylor's first novel, she has two middle-grade books about faeries, Dreamdark, and another YA novel - or, collection of three short stories, Lips Touch: Three Times. They're all AMAZING. But nothing can compare with DOS&B

    I found you through goodreads, and I'm a new follower! I would absolutely love it if you could check out my blog, Paper Fantasies, when you get the time.


  3. An amazing tale. Beautiful storytelling and rich characters. Taylor is an instant favorite with this book. You won't be able to put it down!

    Maycee Greene (Great Website Designs Anchorage)


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