Sunday 2 October 2011


Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a book unbounded by genre but located at a magical crossroads where The Passage meets Philip Pullman and Twilight meets Pan's Labyrinth.

Errand requiring immediate attention. Come.

The note was on vellum, pierced by the talons of the almost-crow that delivered it. Karou read the message. 'He never says please', she sighed, but she gathered up her things.

When Brimstone called, she always came.

In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance. On the one hand, she's a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family. Raised half in our world, half in 'Elsewhere', she has never understood Brimstone's dark work - buying teeth from hunters and murderers - nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself, plagued by the sensation that she isn't whole.

Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing, and Karou must choose between the safety of her human life and the dangers of a war-ravaged world that may hold the answers she has always sought.

After hearing so many good things about this book, I was looking forward to reading it myself. And I have to say that it's definitely worth the hype.

Karou is an art student who lives in the wondrous city of Prague. She's also the member of a family of monsters. Brimstone is her guardian. He has a shop that deals in wishes, and gets her to run a bunch of errands for him. Errands that take her all over the world, via magical doors, and has her gathering teeth. She enjoys her job and loves her art, but she's filled with many questions that Brimstone doesn't want to answer. She also feels as if something's missing inside her. Something she's sure she's lost, but can't remember.

However, the day she meets the wrath of an angel, her life is thrown into a downward spiral that separates her from her family, and challenges everything she's grown to believe about Elsewhere. Suddenly, she's feeling things she doesn't understand. The most baffling being her connection to this strange angel who is throwing her life into chaos.

What follows is an amazing adventure of self-discovery and unbelievable truths, through a world more complicated than she could ever have imagined...

Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a beautifully written and intriguing book. The more I read, the deeper I got into the mystery surrounding just who/what Karou really was. The story also got better with every chapter, leading to an amazingly, unexpected end. One which answers a lot of questions, but also paves the way for many more. 

This was a truly wonderful journey into a dark, elaborate world of fantasy with a very human backdrop. I absolutely loved every minute of it, and can't wait to read more.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone, October 2011, ISBN 9781444722635,  H&S Fiction Paperback

H&UFRC books read: 46/24

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