I cannot believe I doubted this for a minute. Brava, Ms. Taylor! *standingovation*
Karou, a seventeen-year-old, lives in Prague and has a few..Show More » friends at the art school she attends. With her naturally blue hair and gifted drawings of a magical world her classmates don't believe exists, Karou has more secrets than even she knows what to do with. Regularly called on by Brimstone, a creature with a ram's head who runs a curious shop filled with teeth, to complete mysterious tasks requiring her sudden departures, it's not a surprise for others to write off her disappearances. While her best friend, Zuzana might raise an eyebrow to Karou's answers, she doesn't pursue more detail. No one knows that Karou speaks multiple languages and uses magic to travel from Prague to Morocco and other cities within a blink of an eye. Brimstone, almost a father-figure for Karou, regularly reminds her that, while magic may be fun, it always comes with a price. It's only when Akiva comes into her life, a glorious angel who knows much more about her past than she does, that Karou learns just how much of a price it actually is. Her own mysterious past could be even more than she can handle.
With love, magic, battles, and loyalty, the creative tale from author Laini Taylor unfolds with style and intrigue. Each and every character was crucial to the story, thoughtful and compelling in their own ways, whether innocent, selfish, or even creepy and malicious. I particularly loved Zuzana, but that could be attributed as well to the incredible narrator bringing her to life. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is an adventure that in its last few pages becomes so incredibly amazing with each event that I was left thoroughly breathless and awestruck at the creative tale.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: fantasy stories are just that.much.better in audio. Even more so in this case, as Daughter of Smoke and Bone is read by Khristine Hvam, one of the most talented narrators in town. This was my first time listening to her voice, but I can assure you, it will not be my last. With Hvam in control, every character became so immensely distinct that the story stepped up with its magical moments.
My absolute only issue is pretty ridiculous and more than likely to be expected, as I'm well out of my teen years. *sadface* At first, all of the "ooey-gooey-lovey-dovey" stuff was a little over the top, but I had to remind myself I'm not the intended audience. As a general reader who is appreciative of Young Adult fiction, however, the initial first blush of romance was a little more than actually needed. But, no matter. It's simply my own gentle reminder that you should push through it; a little elderly eye-roll every now and again is no big deal when the story ultimately is so incredibly worth it.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone will not let you down; it will likely make you stamp your feet, though, annoyed that you have to wait for Days of Blood and Starlight, the next installment in the series, to be released on November 6, 2012. I think I'm going to just pre-order it right now because I am so impatient. *hatestrilogies*
Khristine Hvam was absolutely wonderful for this story. She clearly felt comfortable voicing each of the characters, easily punching up drama and emotion and love when necessary. What a talent she is! I can't wait to listen to more from her.
I really liked the premise for this book. The mystery of the teeth and why Karous is running the mysterious errands is enough to keep you hooked but ..Show More »ultimately I didn't....
... buy into the chemistry between Karou and Akiva. There just wasn't enough to it and I found that I didn't care enough about their relationship. I would also have loved to hear more about Karou's other family but there just wasn't enough details on this either.
I really liked Karou as a character, she was interesting and brave but otherwise I don't know if I will bother with the next book. This book just didn't draw me in enough.
It's hard to write a review of this book without giving away too may spoilers, so I will keep this as general as possible. This book is amazing! ..Show More »If you loved Daughter of Smoke and Bone (a must read on my list) then you will LOVE this book too. It's darker then the first and not as much romance (to my disappointment) but it is exquisitely written and the story will suck you in from the beginning. Once this story gets going you will find it very hard to stop listening. I was obsessed! I was happy to see Zusana is back (she is one of my favorite characters) and there are many new ones introduced in this one. I wouldn't suggest picking this book up before reading Smoke and Bone as it might be too confusing given all the new character developments. As before, Khristine Hvam is brilliant at the narration. Thank you to Hachette Audio for sticking to a narrator that works!
I highly recommend this book/series and I can not wait for the next installment.
Magical listening experience with a deeper meaning
Days of Blood and Starlight is the second book in a trilogy and follows the events of Daughter of Smoke and Bone. After Karou has found out about ..Show More »her past life and that Akiva is responsible for the demise of her own race, the chimaera, Karou decided to leave Akiva. Now she is allied with the chimaera rebells and helps them by resurrecting their fallen. Meanwhile Akiva thinks that Karou is dead and plans his own rebellion against his father. In Prague, Zuzana is worried about her friend and tries to decipher an email sent by Karou that might help her find her friend.
I had some more troubles getting into this volume than I had with the first book. The book only grapped me once I had listened to about a third of it; but then it enfolded its whole charme and proved to be just as good as the first volume.
It is more than just a fantasy book or a romance novel. It is an intricately woven story of two worlds, two leaders bent on war and cruelty and a few people trying to bring peace to their world. It is a story about hate and politics, but it is also a story about friendship.
The unabridged audiobook is narrated again by Khristine Hvam, who already narrated the first book. I fell in love with her way of narrating in the first book and enoyed her interpretation of this second book just as much. She has a wonderful voice and I particularly liked how she gave life to Karou's friend Zuzana (whom I find a great character).