Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor was recommended by a librarian friend of mine when I complained that the book I was reading at the time wasn’t holding my interest (despite its high recommendation from a few good friends, I just can’t read Swordpoint).
DSB is a fantasy novel that makes you feel like it could actually be real. This is mostly due to the fact that Taylor sets and starts the story in modern day Prague. I do not know anything about the layout of Prague except that it is a place many people consider worth traveling to. It is known to boast old world architecture and the author makes reference to many places within the city. Again, I know nothing about Prague but Taylor has been there before so I trust she knows the area.
The story starts off with Karou, who by all accounts is a normal girl. Except she has no parents. And nobody knows where she came from before she came to Prague. And the fact that she’s a foreigner who speaks perfect Czech (as one of the characters says “who speaks Czech besides the Czechs?”) among other languages. The reader soon learns that there’s more to Karou than one believes, but even she does not realize who she really is. Not until the end of the story anyway.
The novel is filled with the supernatural, but only Karou is aware of its existence for most of the story. There are chimera and angels, and you never know who is in the right and who is in the wrong. There is magic and wishes, but everything comes with a price. It doesn’t take long for Karou to see that there is more to the world than even she knows.
By the end, both the reader and Karou come to grips with who she really is. But then it all ends…on a cliffhanger. And you are literally left wondering: what happens next?
Luckily, everything continues in Days of Blood & Starlight. Stay tuned for its review.
My rating: 5/5