Daughter of Smoke and Bone – Laini Taylor
Pages: 420 (ARC)
Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton
Release Date: 29th September 2011
Other Titles by this Author: Blackbringer, Silksinger, Lips Touch: Three Times
There once was a young artist called Karou who drew tales of monsters and demons that delighted and enthralled those around her.
But she has a secret, a secret that ties her to a dusty subterranean world chamber, where her beloved guardian brokers dark deals in a place that is not here. A place that is Elsewhere.
Living with one foot in each world, Karou has never really known which one is her true home.
Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing...
From all of the glowing reviews appearing over the last couple of months my expectations for Daughter of Smoke and Bone were sky high. I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest.
Karou’s story is told in a style of prose so sensual and seductive that I literally fell onto the twisting streets of Prague next to Karou. Laini Tayor evoked the romanticism and mythical nature of such an old, cultured and intriguing city and I had such a yearning to visit while reading Daughter of Smoke and Bone. The mythology included in this novel falls seamlessly into the setting and I just wanted more. And more. And even more.
I was completely enthralled by the mythology. I found the chimaera endlessly fascinating and the concoctions of creatures literally broke my brain when I tried to imagine what they looked like. Especially Brimstone and Issa who were the chimaeras most central to the story. I kind of see them as those books I had as a kid that was split into three sections: heads, bodies and legs and you could put any ridiculous combinations together, but Laini Taylor manages to envisage this in a seamless and natural way.
However, my favourite element of Daughter of Smoke and Bone has to be the fantastically drawn characters. As a protagonist you have to be awesome. And Karou has awesomeness in spades. On the surface she’s full of spunk, individuality and overflowing with artistic talent, but underneath she’s lonely, incomplete and desperate to find love. I loved that there were so many layers to her. I had, however, guessed what was revealed about Karou’s past. Though I still loved it. Lots. You’ve also got the quirky and loyal Zuzana and Akiva who I can promise will get your heart beating faster.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a phenomenal start to the trilogy and I absolutely cannot wait to read more about Karou’s world.
A huge thank you to Hodder for providing me with a review copy.