Sunday, May 4, 2014

Review: Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #1)

“Yearning for love made her feel like a cat that was always twining around ankles, meowing Pet me, pet me, look at me, love me. Better to be the cat gazing coolly down from a high wall, its expression inscrutable. The cat that shunned petting, that needed no one. Why couldn't she be that cat?” 

Author: Laini Taylor

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 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?


Main character Karou is artistic, mysterious and can exact a funny vengeance on the spot.

Fan Rendition of Karou

“She had a sadness that was so deep, but it still could turn to light in a second,and when I saw her smile I wondered what it would be like to make her smile. I thought...I thought it would be like the discovery of smiling.” - Akiva

As an errand girl and a loyal friend, she is trapped between living in two worlds (err, not the Hannah Montana type, her blue hair is so not a wig or even dyed). It was like she's standing in the middle of a boundary line. Stuck. One foot on the side where normal things happen, and the other, on a place where mysterious magic is at work. She's not living a boring life, by all means, far from it. It's exciting, magical and scary at times. But she is lonely and empty. Like there is something missing. Do I sound like a sentimental fool? Geez.

This fantastic novel is full of vivid imagery. Most of the chapters happened in Prague.

I have never been to Prague. I have never read any brochures or travel guides about Prague.

I was not in interested in Prague until this book came along. Prague is beautiful. It's a place rich in secrets, artisans, elegant houses and horror-filled stories. I was there with Karou, Zuzana, Mik and even the good-for-nothing Kaz. I was lost in Prague while sitting on my own bed munching on chocolate-coated almonds.

Such a romantic city...

And speaking of romance, OHMYGOSHFREAKINGGOSH!!! Yes, the capslock is a must. The romance is SAPPY with an extra sauce of sappiness in an adorable kind of sappy without the puke-inducing sappiness!!! Am I making any sense? It was sweet, intense, and cute.

“He was right. It made no sense at all, but the feeling flooded through Karou, and whatever it was, it was as sweet as a patch of sun on a glossy floor and, like a cat, she just wanted to curl up in it.” 

I am not going to lie, the romance is predictable. Not kind of, not even a little but really predictable. I won't elaborate on it because that might give away the plot of this book. Let's just say that I know where it was going from the start but I still lapped it up. It was the writing that mesmerized me and I guess the kind of love in it. It was the selfless kind. I was love struck with the romance and Akiva!

“Oh, Hell. Must. Mate. Immediately.” - Zuzana

Akiva was delicious. First he was scary then he was like a zombie coming back to life AND then he was delicious. And a bad-ass. He's one of those rare heroes that is totally fine whether he is an angel, vampire, fairy, prince, barbarian, zombie, mammoth, monkey, werewolf, or even just a mere human. Yes, he is that likable.

The friendship between Zuzana and Karou is amazing and believable. Zuzana is hands down the best-best friend in the history of YA!

“Hey! My body may be small, but my soul is large. It’s why I wear platforms. So I can reach the top of my soul.” - Zuzana 

I honestly cannot remember a single character that I hated. Even the asshole ex-boyfriend and the main antagonist were alright.

The predictability of this novel did not hinder me from giving it a perfect rating because the plot is beyond interesting and well-written. An absolute recommended read with Bluest Ribbon's seal of approval!



“Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there's no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.” - Madrigal Kirin


  1. The romance was the weakest part of the book. I counted down a lot because of that reason. Also, welcome back! I've missed you!

    1. Hi Lyn! Thank you and I've missed you, too. I miss blogging so much especially my blog friends. :-)

  2. This is one of my favourite book of recent years, such a beautiful book that sticks in your mind because it's just so beautifully written!

    Thea @ Gizzimomo's Book Shelf

  3. Exactly, Thea! I hope the author writes lots and lots of book. Like gazillion of them! *looked at the air and sighed* Definitely a must read.