Daughter of Smoke & Bone-Laini Taylor
Publisher: Little, Brown
Publication Date: September 27, 2011
Source: Review copy provided by publisher
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?
I think we live in a world of average. I enjoy most books I read, but I think they fall on either the low or high side of average. That is not a bad thing at all, as I'm sure if I publish, odds are I'll end up on either side of that average scale. So, when something extraordinary comes along, I get really, really excited. Daughter of Smoke and Bone lands high on the extraordinary scale. So high that it lands amongst some of the favorite books I've ever read, and since I've been a reader for many, many years, this is a big thing for me to say.
This book has everything. Poetic writing, a beautiful sensuality, and intriguing characters that you can't help but fall in love with. I parceled out reading this book because I was reluctant to leave this smartly imagined universe.
Who doesn't dream that there is a secret world, existing just outside of the corner of our eyes? Karou is a messenger for Brimstone, the er, man, that has raised her since birth. She runs creepy errands for him, without really knowing what he does with all the teeth he collects for her. She doesn't know where she came from, or anything about her parents, but she's happy enough in her life. She's a talented artist, has a great best friend, and a bright life in front of her.
When black handprints start appearing on doorways, Karou's life quickly begins to unravel. I loved that Karou doesn't fall to despair, she rises to the occasion and is determined to get to the bottom of what's going on.
Her journey to the truth will leave you flipping pages as quickly as you can, because this story pulls you in and won't let go! I absolutely adored this wonderful novel, and I am so, so thrilled that there will be further books in this series. I can't wait!