Synopsis : . . . 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 [a ]--beautiful, haunted [stranger] 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?
A while ago, I borrowed Daughter of Smoke and Bone from the library and never got around to reading it. So, I just returned it unread.
That was a big mistake and I'm so glad that I purchased the audio book
Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a magical tale, seamlessly weaved together by Laini Taylor. The words tell a compelling story and drew me in from the first paragraph.
Karou is a little different. No one really knows who she is, not even Karou herself. She can speak numerous languages, has peacock blue hair that seems to grow out of her head and most of all she has her art; sketches and drawings of monstrous creatures.
However there is something more to Karou's drawings. There is something more to this pen and paper world she has created. Something otherworldy is breaking thorough to our world; an ancient battle with Karou and a mysterious young man named Akiva at the center.
The plot of Daughter of Smoke and Bone breaks the mold of the usual YA story line. The surreal and twisted story methodically and deliberately reveals the true destiny of Karou. I was mesmerized by this book, and found the novel's slow mysterious pacing similar to that of The Night Circus.
This novel takes two YA genres (that I won't name in fear of spoilers) and transforms them in a completely original way. As the truth slowly gets revealed I kept finding myself wanting to scream "OUT WITH IT ALREADY" but the slow build pays off as the novel takes a turn in an unexpected (if not slightly predictable) direction.
What I enjoyed most about Daughter of Smoke and Bone was the global settings. So often YA books have a tendency to be U.S.-centric and it's refreshing that this book opens in Eastern Europe.
The voice actress for the audiobook, Khristine Hvam, was spot on. She had a wide variety of range and her interpretation of Karou was just how imagined it. I also enjoyed the music that was played during pages with poems or anecdotes on them. I highly suggest this audio book
With its blooming world building and striking originality Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a story of hope, destiny and love.