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Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone) (edition 2012)

by Laini Taylor

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,3653931,615 (4.14)256
Member:ajt81
Title:Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone)
Authors:Laini Taylor
Info:Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 448 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:fantasy, romance, young adult, Prague

Work details

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor (Author)

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Showing 1-5 of 391 (next | show all)
Okay, this series has officially made its way onto my favorite books list. It's one of the top few, in fact. It astounded me, dazzled me...there's an almost magical touch to it that makes you want to immerse yourself in it forever. You have to read this. It's very likely to change some part of your life. ( )
  KendraJ. | Dec 29, 2016 |
4.5

I am not really a fan of this particular genre.

I tend to avoid hyped books and Daughter of Smoke and Bone was definitely one of those.

I would be so wrong if I didn't start reading it.

It has one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking story of star-crossed lovers. It has one of the loveliest protagonist with a likeable friend (considering the whole story, Karou definitely deserved Zuzana). If that isn't enough, you get Akiva. My plan was to read a bit and continue the next day, but then Akiva was introduced into the story and I blinked and I was half way through it.

The world building is not neglected. Although the first book only sets the stage for the future conflicts, most of the relevant points are perfectly presented. From the characters' personal histories to the folklore and myths of the opposite sides, you get enough to love it all.

There is one thing I hate and this book has it in abundance. There was too much foreshadowing. I don't enjoy reading a story waiting for that thing to happen. It happens so many times here and it was painful. Note the I here. It is just my personal preference. It didn't manage to ruin the story though. You probably won't mind a cliffhanger in the end either. ( )
  Aneris | Dec 29, 2016 |
I loved Dreamdark: Blackbringer and checked this book out from the library based on that. I'm so glad I did. I thought that pretty much everything had been done in the realm of fantasy but this book has the feeling of something brand new. Admittedly, there are some big classic themes that have been done many times in many ways, but you could say that of just about any book. What makes this book stand out is the imagination of the author and her ability to make disbelief disappear. The details are vibrant and the story very hard to stop reading. Now I'm going to have to find the others in this series. ( )
  aurelas | Dec 23, 2016 |
Just look at that cover! Back in high school I would have snatched this book up so fast. And I bet I would have fallen in love with it too. I'd heard so many nice things about Daughter of Smoke and Bone, so I couldn't wait to read it and be blown away. My expectations may have been unfairly high, but while I did like it, I didn't swoon like other people did.

The world Laini Taylor builds is so spectacular, and I was hooked from the first page. Blue-haired, whip-smart Karou is a 17-year-old art student living by herself in Prague. Much about her is a mystery, even to herself. She is an orphan, she has no idea how she got the hamsa tattoos on her palms, and she can use the beads on her necklace to grant wishes. Her adopted family runs a shop where the only accepted currency is teeth. Oh, and this family is made up of literal monsters.

They are actually chimaera, physical hybrids of different animals. Their boss is the gruff Brimstone, whom I picture as some kind of enormous reptilian minotaur. Brimstone is the Wishmonger, giving wishes in exchange for teeth from pretty much any species. He sends Karou through magic portals to various places - Paris, San Francisco, Marrakesh - to collect teeth. Karou loves the chimaera but is getting tired of running errands that she doesn't know the purpose of. She also has to keep her life hidden from everyone, including her best friend.

I lost some of my enthusiasm when this tortured, impossibly gorgeous angel named Akiva arrives on the scene. He and his brethren have a thing against chimaera, and they are marking the portals to Brimstone's shop with black handprints. Akiva sees Karou leave the shop and, curious about her connection to the "devil sorcerer," follows her. Karou is forced to confront Akiva when he attacks her outside the Marrakesh portal, but something about her causes him to spare her. And yup, the first thing the love interest did to our heroine was try to kill her.

This is where I began losing interest in the story, and it didn't help when I read things like "He was the most beautiful thing Karou had ever seen. Her first thought, incongruous but overpowering, was to memorize him so she could draw him later." Girl, he's also trying to kill you! (To be fair, that's her second thought.) Some readers really dig the romance, and that's great! To me, it was obvious that Karou and Akiva would get together; what else are two awesomely beautiful people supposed to do? I was also disappointed that their love seems to be based on mutual physical attraction. They don't really have conversations or share any experiences. Even when it's revealed why they are so drawn to each other - which I kind of figured out beforehand - their relationship doesn't gain much more depth.

I really did enjoy the writing, though. Like I said, I loved the worldbuilding - I haven't been this amazed since [b:The Golden Compass|119322|The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials, #1)|Philip Pullman|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1333617993s/119322.jpg|1536771]. Taylor also has this vivid writing style that is almost poetic at times. It really sounds like Karou is in a chilly street in early-morning Prague, or surrounded by the heat and noise of the Marrakesh marketplace. And I have to give Taylor mad props for taking cliched elements - star-crossed lovers, angels versus demons - and creating a story that is uniquely her own. I will definitely be reading the sequel.

Three and a half stars. ( )
  doryfish | Dec 13, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 391 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Taylor, LainiAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Caplan, DaveCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hvam, KhristineNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Impey, AllisonDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Santen, Gert vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well.
Dedication
First words
Walking to school over the snow-muffled cobbles, Karou had no sinister premonitions about the day.
Quotations
Humanity, perhaps, that quality of benevolence that humans have, without irony, named after themselves.
She tastes like nectar and salt. Nectar and salt and apples. Pollen and stars and hinges. She tastes like fairy tales. Swan maidens at midnight. Cream on the tip of a fox's tongue. She tastes like hope.
Wishes are false. Hope is true. Hope makes it own magic.
If it's not chocolate, it's not breakfast.
Evanescence was not, in itself, a grim fate. It was the way of things, to be unmade; it happened in natural death, every day.
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Haiku summary
Karou leads double
Life: art student and errand
Girl for wishmonger.
(passion4reading)
A fantastic tale
Of teeth exchanged for wishes
And forbidden love.
(passion4reading)

No descriptions found.

(see all 2 descriptions)

Seventeen-year-old Karou, a lovely, enigmatic art student in a Prague boarding school, carries a sketchbook of hideous, frightening monsters--the chimaerae who form the only family she has ever known.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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