Publisher: Little, Brown
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Summary (from Goodreads): 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 one of the strangers--beautiful, haunted Akiva--fixes his fire-colored 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?
My Summary: Karou was raised by a loving family ... of monsters. Living with them in their shop, Karou was raised in the world of chimera and magic. She's had everything she could ever wish for, but Karou always felt that she was supposed to be doing something else; supposed to be somewhere else....
But its not until mysterious burning handprints begin to appear on the doorways to her family's world - cutting her off from the only people who have ever cared about her - does Karou discover the truth about who she is and where she came from. In the midst of all this, Karou is drawn to the mysterious stranger she met with the piercing eyes; he almost killed her the first time they met, but she's determined to figure out what his role is in the disappearance of her chimera family.
My Thoughts: Once in a while a book comes along that's unlike any other in its genre - Daughter of Smoke & Bone is definitely that book. When I read the first stopped to read the first few lines in the bookstore, it turned into the first few pages, and then into the first two chapters. At that point I checked my watch and realized I was going to be late for work, so I grabbed a copy, paid for it, and ran out the door. My thoughts were still stuck on the book all through my shift, and when I finally got home, I didn't stop reading until I was done the book.
The writing was flawless, and I adored the use of Prague as the setting - I mean, it's Prague! It added to the whole mysterious atmosphere of the novel and made me want to book a ticket on the next plane. I also really liked the fact that it's not a typical YA romance where boy meets girl and they find out they're meant to be together forever and music starts playing and everything is pink and smells like cotton candy... you know what I mean. This novel was edgy (which I love) and didn't have that typical YA story-line.
Final Thoughts: If you haven't already, pick up a copy of Daughter of Smoke & Bone! I recommend it to anyone over 16 who enjoys more complex and mature paranormal YA.