Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Story of Beasts and Beauty

"Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love.
It did not end well."
--Laini Taylor, Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Genre: YA Fantasy
Publisher: Little Brown and Company
Pages: 417 pages
Publication Date: September 27th, 2011
Source: Bought
Find on Goodreads

Goodreads Description

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 grows 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 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?

*Swoon* If I had to describe my experience reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone it would have to be summed up by that. Oh my goodness, this book is just...gah! I can't describe it! For those of you haven't read it yet this book is about Karou, a blue haired young woman living in Prague and going to art school. She is extremely talented and her sketch books have a cult following around school due to her creative genius and rendering of characters called Brimstone, Issa, Twiga and Yasri. Mythical looking creatures that have both animal and human parts...but here's the catch...they're all real. Karou's blue hair isn't dyed, it grows out of her head, her hamsa eye tattoos on her palms have been there since she can remember, and her mysterious lack of a past is as true and tragic and real as she is standing in front of you. 

First and foremost, if you can't tell already, my love for this book is deep. I don't even know if my words will be able to give you any idea of how amazing this piece of literature is. I originally read this earlier this year but with the next book coming out I know I had to let myself take a day and re-read it in order to adequately prepare for the next book. It was a fantastic decision. This book is beautiful. The writing is enchanting, the characters are mesmerizing, and the whole world of the angels and chimaera is honestly breathtaking. The little breaks in the book with the feather and a concise statement about angels and devils were some of my favorite parts. I never knew that one sentence at a time intermixed in the middle of the book could be so powerful...but they were. You never really knew what they meant until you continued to read the next section. So cool. 

And the writing! I can't gush enough about how amazing it is. I could just feel the passion and love oozing out of the pages and I was completely transported to another world entire. I could so vividly see the world of both Prague and Eretz. The different chimaera, the caged city, the angels. OH THE ANGELS! Akiva...*swoon drool slack-jawed faint* Repeat. Seriously. I love angels, I love reading about them, I love all the different versions and interpretations of them and their origin, I can't get enough and this was no exception. These angels were warriors. Fierce, broken, vengeful, and beautiful. So different than a lot of other books I've read but I loved it. Unique and intense and their city was another I could completely see in my head as if I were there.

Hope. The main theme that is laced throughtout this book. Hope is magic unto itself. Every philosophical mention of hope and its power gave me chills. The message is just so powerful and fierce it makes the reader feel strong while experiencing the story.  And Brimstone's teaching, though sparse, were lovely. His monologues to Karou about magic vs hope were so right on that I got chills while reading. The love between them was so pure and paternal that I could not get enough of the tender moments between them. SPEAKING of love, the battle Karou and Akiva go through is unlike any other I've read. It is raw and heart wrenching and tender and at the end of the day makes your chest ache for them! *sigh* Just so good, seriously. 

I have Days of Blood and Starlight next to me right now but I had to get my thoughts down on Daughter and Smoke and Bone first. Reading the next one for my thoughts, like, in a day :)

Did I mention how beautiful the writing was?...No?...Enchanting also...I love that word...Just like I LOVE this book...k, I'm done...for now...Until I finish Days of Blood and Starlight...*swoon*

If you love amazing storytelling, vivid imagery, and true love...this book's for you.


  1. I love Brimstone too! I definitely have a soft spot in my heart for him.

    1. Oh me too! Like a big teddy bear...that looks like a ram...

  2. I haven't read that book yet but I might have to put it in my "to read list". Thanks for the post!

  3. Okay, I am now convinced. I mean, I shouldn't have doubted it since Cassandra Clare recommended it too! I am going to put this on my "to read" list and add it to "wish list" on Amazon!

    Really nice review! Thank you for convincing me!!! :D

    1. Oh thank you so much! I still feel like I blog to myself so anytime somebody takes my opinion or likes my reviews I do a little happy dance :)

  4. Lovely review! I've heard great things about the books but I've been wary because, like you said, they were overhyped. It sounds like they deserve all the love that they're getting though!

    Maycee Greene (Anchorage Great Web Design)


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