Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a nicely dark urban fantasy featuring an unusual setting (Prague) and a variety of interesting characters. This is definitely a Romeo and Juliet story playing upon several mythos but at its heart a devil and demon pairing in the midst of a centuries old war.
Story: Karou is a human art student raised by 'monsters' - beasts made up of several different types of animals living in the underground. Then an angel appears trying to kill her and slaughter her friends/family, and she soon realizes that there is a lot more to her life and family then she ever knew. But will she learn enough in time to save those important to her - or even herself?
I fully understand why there are so many 5-star reviews for this book - it's decently written, interestingly dark, and makes a lot of moral dilemmas for the main characters. And yet, it never really captured me. Not enough happens and a lot is remembering a past that already happened - making half the book feel very passive. I listened to the audible version and I found myself oddly disconnected and even bored with the story. I didn't really like Karou, her friends, or the angel. As well, the villains were almost cookie cutter macho bad guys and the good guys just a bit too good. That lack of complexity warred with a story that was trying very hard to not be so simplistic.
I attribute my malaise more to my personal tastes and interests rather than the fault of the author, however. So for me it was a 2 star book but recognizing the appeal, I offset that against the 5 stars and find a 3.5 star rating.
Don't let my experience discourage you from this book - it is by no means a bad book at all and I can definitely see why so many enjoyed it.
I listen to a bit of everything. Mostly Fantasy and paranormal romance with my wife. Along with mysteries/thrillers, even some sci-fi.
The characters in this book are fantastic. From Brimstone and the rest of the chimera, to Karou and her human friends, and the angels, they all have unique characteristics and are brought to life in by both the author and the performance.
Khristine Hvam's performance is right up ther with Jim Dale's performance in the Harry Potter series. She breathes a different life into each character and gives them their own voice no matter how big or small their role. She treats them with respect and gives them a completeness that is hard to find in books with a large cast.
The book makes me smile and warms the heart, but it also tears at the heart strings when the situation calls for it. It really runs the gammut of emotions
While I felt the ending was a little weak, I'm really excited to see wher Ms. Taylor takes the characters next.
Mommy of twins
Laini Taylor’s DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE is such a different kind of modern fantasy; it’s hard to know where to start. So I guess I gotta just jump right into it.
I really liked this strange world Taylor created of humans, angels (Seraphim & Fallen) and mix of demon like creatures (pure & resurrected). The story takes place in “real” time and flash backs, as well as on earth (mostly Prague) and a demon realm.
Although DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE fascinated me from the start, the story did rollercoaster a bit. I was immediately drawn in by the oddly captivating tattooed artist Karou; with her blue hair and magical ways, then Smoke and Bones lost me a little in the middle and yet, re-captivated me again with Akiva and Madrigal story. So yes, I really liked this new and innovative tale of Love and Brimstone (pun intended ~_*) but the lulls midway through, dragged the story some, preventing a 5 star over-the-top declaration of love from me.
Slow bits aside, I did really love all the colorful characters and appreciated the uniqueness and imaginativeness of the story as a whole. I’d recommend DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE to any fan of curious dark worlds of demon creatures and angels... Oh yes and ‘love of overcoming’, of course.
I love the descriptive nature with the depth of character. It's a sensual treat with a little whimsy thrown in. The world sucks you in right away and I throughly enjoyed it.
Among my top favorites.
I always have the same issue with this question. How do I say this without spoilers? Well let's just say, the part where Akiva realizes who Karou is.
No. But I was very impressed with her work. She's among the best I've heard. Her narration helps to flesh out the characters and to get an accurate feel of the story.
Love will save you
This book is top notch. The writing is a cut above the rest. The characters are well thought out, they are complex and endearing. And the romance? Lord have mercy on my swooning soul! It's genuine, unique, heartbreaking, need I go on? I will say though, the only thing I wasn't ecstatic about was that Karou was physically too perfect, too beautiful. However, the author manages to make Karou a character that you care for and root for, in spite of her 'perfection', unlike so many other authors, that make me roll my eyes and want to punch their heroines in their stupid faces.
Review originally posted at YA Love
It took me some time to get into this book both physically (my first attempt at reading it) and aurally. I’m so thankful I kept with the audio because it is one of my favorite audiobooks. To put it simply, the narration is wonderful. Khristine Hvam used a believable accent and differentiated between each character so well that I was never questioning which character was speaking. I love listening to audiobooks when I’m getting ready for work, driving to and from work, and getting chores/cooking done. I know I really love an audiobook when I find myself making excuses to drive somewhere or to get more cleaning done, which is what I did while listening to Daughter of Smoke and Bone.
The first thing I want to say about Daughter of Smoke and Bone is that I love Laini Taylor’s beautiful use of vocabulary. Her writing is lush and vibrant. I don’t know if I would have appreciated it as much if I wasn’t listening to the audio, but it’s seriously wonderful. I’ve never read a book that uses vocabulary and description to the degree that Taylor does, at least not recently.
The story itself is layered and engrossing. I love Karou and the incredible life she leads. She’s feisty, which I thoroughly enjoyed, but she’s vulnerable as well. I was a little lost during the Akiva back story, but when everything came together I was so impressed and excited. I’ll admit that the back story was beginning to bother me since I didn’t know where it was going, but it did make me love Akiva that much more.
I’m not sure if any movie rights for Daughter of Smoke and Bone have been purchased, but I would love to see this story come to life on the big screen. I know a movie wouldn’t do it justice (they rarely do), but I think I’d still enjoy it just the same.
If you decide to read Daughter of Smoke and Bone, which I hope you, make sure you have a copy of Days of Blood & Starlight handy because you’ll want to start reading it as soon as you can!
Graphic Designer. Culinary Enthusiast. Mostly User Friendly.
I really enjoyed this. It felt pretty substantial -- especially for a young adult novel -- with interesting characters, decent writing and a story that had some depth. I was kept completely engrossed by Khristine Hvam's narration. I've already downloaded the next book and can't wait to listen!
Very interesting and thought provoking story of prejudice, love and war. There's meat presented here for those who wish to ponder the beautiful and ugly in each soul, but it's wrapped into a pleasing package of fluid and unusual prose. The setting is described in lovely and haunting terms. The performance is very *very* good (brava on the male roles!), though I have given it 4 rather than 5 stars because of some jarring mispronunciations.
The second half of the book lags in a series of flashbacks that - in my opinion - might have been more interesting broken up and scattered more. However, I can see the wisdom behind presenting them as they are, as well, so I have not rated the story down.
Based on a simple overall concept, this is a creative and well written story: a very enjoyable bonbon of a book.
Refreshing, totally unbound, well narrated, and just completely worth it! I quickly bought book 2 ( just couldn't wait for more credits to be added, I paid anyway) I am holding my breath for the next addition. I can't wait to see where this author goes with this!
Acupuncture student with a long commute to school who loves quirky horror and sci-fi/fantasy
I loved this audio book! It was engaging and the narrator brought the characters to life
I wish I knew as I loved it
she did a great job separating all of the characters and really making you feel like you knew each of them
yes!! I was obsessed with it, I listen in my car when I commute and I found myself sitting in my driveway when I got home and not wanting to come inside because I was so into it