Title: Daughter of Smoke & Bone
Author: Laini Taylor
Genre: urban fantasy, young adult, romance, paranormal
Order in series: Book # 1 in a trilogy
Release Date: September 27, 2011
Length: 418 pages
(total of 60 chapters + an epilogue)
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 beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery 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?
Walking to school over the snow-muffled cobbles, Karou had no sinister premonitions about the day.
What made me get it and thoughts on the cover
What— Before 2016 I heard nothing about this book or series, NOTHING… until I heard 2 book tubers name this series as their favorite series ever and how even the 2nd and 3rd book are as great as the first one. Oddly enough neither of the 2 girls said anything about the story, claiming that it’s best to dive into it not knowing anything about it. So later when I went to the bookstore that rarely does any discounts I bought a few stand-alone novels that were 10% off and of course I had to take a look at the box sets, they were at 20% off; I was debating on whether getting The Hunger Games, Divergent series, John Green’s book collection, or a set of 3 Dan Brown books. Then I saw this book series and thought “You know what I’ll just get it since I don’t know anything about it.” Debate over.
The cover — The cover is great, the feathered mask gives you that masquerade feeling (I was so excited to find out as I was reading that it’s actually from a scene in the book)… on the internet I also saw the UK cover, the one with the red door, it’s also amazing but I think this one looks more like a young adult book. Though I also love the other cover (so haunting). Anyway, this is the one I have. The pages feel very rough when flipping them with your fingers, still it’s a beautiful book.
Speechless. this book was AMAZING. I read it in 2 nights, and it was torture having to keep thinking about what will happen next during work.
I usually write the page numbers of pages with a quote or line that I like on a small notebook but here from the start I knew that I wouldn’t need to do that ‘cause every line is so beautifully written I’d end up writing all the pages ahead of me and that stayed true to the very end. Such beautiful writing. The author created a beautiful world in Prague, Morocco and in ‘Elsewhere’. Her descriptions of the different settings were stunning, especially Prague (I wanna go there so bad).
I got lost in the whole world of angels and chimaeras. It was so easy to relate to Karou and her relationship with the chimaeras who raised her and whom she considered as her own family; her friendship with Zuzanna; her self discovery and of course her love relationship with the beautiful angel Akiva.
Akiva considers himself in battle with the whole race of chimaeras and has killed so many of them as shown in the marks on his wrists –whenever he kills one of them he adds a scar to his arms as a tally- he suddenly finds himself curious about this blue-haired girl he saw coincidentally. One he was supposed to kill but couldn’t. I kept on wondering why he did what he did? Why he feels a certain attraction towards her? Why does he hate the chimaeras so much?….…. Pages flew by until I got an idea of what happened and even though I figured out the answer to all those questions above and to the weird things that’s happening to Karou, reading the scene of Akiva’s breakdown on the bridge and revealing everything that we already know (since the writer gave enough hints for everyone to figure out what Karou was by then) was amazing. Seriously that scene was so epic and beautiful.
Then of course there was this whole part after Karou broke the wishbone that was dedicated to the past, now those chapters were very important since they played out a very important period. I’m impressed with the way the writer got us to love Madrigal with her bat wings and how she managed to mention all the events and objects in the past that are related to present (the present that we read about earlier) in a seamless and smooth manner. And oh that heartbreaking scene in the past where Akiva had to witness Madrigal getting killed right in front of him…. Oh boy!
I loved the meaning behind the marks on the Karou’s palms (mark of Hamas) and how it changes a ‘pure’ chimera (one that hasn’t been resurrected as a different creature body) to a revenant.
One of the other things that I liked about this book is that there was no love triangles, I really hate stories that revolve around a love triangle. Luckily we didn’t have that here. Karou only had an ex-boyfriend and Madrigal was chased by the hateful Thiago. I hope it stays that way in the second book.. though after what Akiva mistakenly did to Karou’s family I have my doubts.
Obviously I loved loved this book and I can’t wait to read the next two.
If you’d like to get lost in an epic love story and mythical world then I highly recommend you pick up Daughter of Smoke and Bone ASAP. 5/5 stars
“It’s a wishbone,” she’d told him, holding it out. “You hook your finger around the spur, like this, and we each make a wish and pull. Whoever gets the bigger piece gets their wish.”
“Magic?” Akiva had asked. “What bird does this come from, that its bones make magic?”
“Oh, it’s not magic. The wishes don’t really come true.”
“Then why do it?”
She shrugged. “Hope? 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 make things happen, almost like magic.”