Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Laini Taylor

dosaboneAround 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 grows 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 actuallygrows 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?

Find the book on Goodreads.

Well, this was enjoyable.  You’ll no doubt no by now that YA paranormal fantasy is the very definition of hit and (mostly) miss with me, so it’s always nice to read something along those lines that I actually like.

The beginning was great.  I mean, Prague?  In the snow?  With a mysterious and sassy blue haired heroine?  And it only got better with the introduction of her Chimaera family.  I wanted to know more about them, especially Brimstone, because you just know that guy is sitting on some juicy secrets.  The whole ‘portal’ thing was cool, and the tooth collecting errands, it was whimsical and kind of dark at the same time and oh, so enjoyable.

Then the love interest was introduced and I don’t get it.  I liked that the angels were vengeful and fiery, and while not quite the enemy they weren’t exactly the good guys but that’s where it ended.  The middle portion of the book started to verge into straight YA paranormal romance territory and that’s where they started to lose me.  They wasted no time between “I want to kill you” and “I want to jump your bones.”  And sure, this was all explained later (when the story went in precisely the direction I hoped it wouldn’t go) but still.

I did love the writing though.  Like many of us, I really appreciate Taylor’s way with faerietale language.  It makes her stories compulsively readable, for me at least, and it’s kind of lyrical and lovely in the way that it rolls off the tongue and moves the plot forward.
three

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