Title: Daughter of Smoke and Bone
Author: Laini Taylor
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Publisher: Little, Brown
Publication date: September 27th, 2011
Although I originally wrote this review in July, my feelings about the book have only intensified. At the time I read it, I didn't know that I would no longer be a bookseller when the book was released--but you better believe I'm going to be at the closest independent bookstore on pub date, handing the book to everyone who walks in the door.
Whenever I try to put my feelings about this book into words, they all crowd to the front at once and get tangled up. I'm not sure I can do it justice without a paintbrush and some interpretive dance to express the more visual and kinesthetic ways that I love this book. I'm very, very sad that I will never get to read it for the first time again. This is the jacket copy:
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?Karou.
Karou. She is so awesome. From the moment I met her, I wanted to be her. She's so badass, with a side of lonely and vulnerable. She doesn't always make the best choices. She's definitely not perfect. But I wouldn't have wanted to read about her if she was.
Much of the story takes place in Prague, which is magical even without Karou and her cronies. Laini Taylor has infused the city with sparkle dust, making it somewhere that every reader is going to want to go. It's mysterious, welcoming, layered, and alive.
I can't say much about the plot without spoiling it, but let me just say that you better clear your schedule if you're going to read this book. On the other hand, you might want to drag it out as long as possible so you don't have to come to the end.
In conclusion, September can't come soon enough. I can't wait to share this book with everyone.