Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

by Laini Taylor


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?

Read More
Book #1 in Series

I was hooked from the very first page..

Yes, I can say that again.

My mind is full of beautiful stories of angels and demons (is that the right word?), stories of love and hope, stories of mythical creatures in a war as old as the world itself…

My mind is screaming: I want more, I need more!

One word: Hope
Two words: Amazing story
Three words: I LOVED it!
Four words: Go read it NOW!

Karou was one of the best female characters I’ve ever read about. It’s strange because she was so different than me, but I could so easily relate to her, to her thoughts, her feelings, her deepest wishes.

“Karou?” Akiva knew that word. It meant ‘hope’ in the language of the enemy […] “Who is she?”

She is a beautiful girl with blue hair and a great talent for drawing. Her artworks show a different world with strange creatures and their stories.

For everyone is just a lot of imagination.. for Karou, this is the story of her life.

But what is her life made of?


Oh, how I could relate to her, to her theory about butterflies, to the need to feel them in your stomach.. but can you really miss something that you know you never had? I think that you can…

“Papilo stomachus: fragile creatures, vulnerable to frost and betrayal.”


It’s hard not to know your own story, not fitting in any world, always in between, always in the shadow, always looking for something and not knowing what, always missing something that you never had.. She always wanted more, she always needed more..

“She craved a presence beside her, solid.

Fingertips light at the nape of her neck and a voice meeting hers in the dark.

Someone who would wait with an umbrella to walk her home in the rain, and smile like sunshine when he saw her coming.

Who would dance with her on her balcony, keep his promises and know her secrets, and make a tiny world wherever he was, with just her and his arms and his whisper and her trust.”


I loved her best friend Zuzana.
She was funny and supportive and I wanted to be her friend too.
She was the anchor that kept Karou on this world, the sunshine in her life.

“Hey! My body may be small, but my soul is large. It’s why I wear platforms. So I can reach the top of my soul”

Also Karou’s ex-boyfriend was such a piece of work. His confidence and charm made me smile a lot. I wanted to go in one of his tours, I wanted to know him better..

I know, I was not suppose to like the jerk, but even Karou wasn’t entirely immune to him.


Oh, keep in mind these wishes, as silly as they are. They are the essence of Karou.

“I wish my hair was blue”

I kept asking myself why did she want all those things..

He shook his head, sorrowful. “You can’t know. You can’t know until you know.”

Because nothing is better than eating at Poison Kitchen – to be honest I even tried to google it, in case I get a chance to visit Prague. Deep down I wanted it to be real.


There was a lot of mystery surrounding the 4 creatures that Karou thought they were her family.

And at some point I thought that I had them figured out.

I was wrong, so wrong, I wish I could start reading this story all over again and see the signs, because I bet there were many, I wish I could give them a big hug, I wish I could see them all (as grotesque as their appearance seemed to me), I wish I knew them sooner, and so does Karou.


Karou’s life is full of mystery.. no, it is a mystery.

And as the book reveals new layers of her true story, of her life, of everyone around her, we get the chance to know more not only about Karou, but also about all those creatures that are part of her life.

“I like my story better. I’d rather be made of tears than darkness”


This is the only place Karou can call “home”. She’s been in so many places, trying to fit in, trying to make a life there, but the only place of her own, where she had a friend, was Prague. Even though her heart and thoughts belong to “Elsewhere”.

“The streets of Prague were a fantasia scarcely touched by the twenty-first century – or the twentieth or nineteenth, for that matter. It was a city of alchemists and dreams, its medieval cobbles once trod by golems, mystics, invading armies.”


If I should put this story into a word, it would be “hope”.
Not only because this is Karou’s name, but because this story is about a magical world, and magic in fact is hope.

“Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there’s no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.”

I left Akiva out of this review on purpose – I will let you uncover his story on your own, but I will give you some clues:

  • eyes like fire
  • love
  • wishes
  • cathedral
  • hand-print
  • battle field
  • masked ball
  • Madrigal

You might think that I’ve said a lot, well I said nothing.. There so many stories and twists into those stories – this book will have you hooked from the first page until the very last one, and let me tell you this: sometimes the ending is just the beginning.

Happy midnight reading!

PS: Oh this series!! So beautiful – all of it! I love it so much! I can’t imagine a world without this story in it.

My only wish:

… Is now to find this set, to have it on my shelf and love it forever


… And if someday the graphic novel will become reality.. Oh my, that will be a dream come true!


Favorite Quote:

Image sources: Karou and Akiva, KarouElectric blue girlRain girl, Wishes in the Moonlight, The Amazing Dancing Puppet

« »


14 responses to “Daughter of Smoke and Bone”

  1. Giselleco says:

    I love this review! This is what I’m reading now! I’m just starting it though.

    Xpresso Reads

    • Ari says:

      Great to hear that, I hope you will love it too 🙂 The writing is amazing, to story is incredibly interesting and vivid, and the ending .. well, let’s say the ending is perfect and will only make you want more.

      Enjoy your reading, can’t wait to see what you think of it 🙂

  2. Miss Page-Turner says:

    Oh wow, glad you loved it as much as I did!

  3. Niahara says:

    I love this review! It’s great and it got me incredibly curious about the book.

    • Ari says:

      The book is really amazing – the concept, the writing, the story, the characters. I loved it all! (well, except for the insta-love, but there’s an explanation for it, so it’s OK)

  4. Sophy says:

    Beautiful review. Love the graphics and the quotes!

  5. TheBrokenShelf says:

    I loved the first book but haven’t had the motivation to get the second one. My brain screamed, “ANOTHER Series?! Seriously?! ugh” so this will just be one series that remains at book one for me.

    • Ari says:

      That will be such a shame as my favorite so far is the second one 😉
      But I know the feeling, I have a few series that I don’t think I will ever get past book one with. I like standalone books as well, but they are so rare these days *sigh*

  6. Milla says:

    I love the review! I just got this book for my birthday, and now it’s definitely the next book I’m reading. Right now I’m reading Jellicoe Road (another birthday present), but I’m super excited for this book now!! 😀

    • Ari says:

      I loved to pieces both ‘Jellicoe Road’ and ‘Daughter of smoke and bone’. Enjoy reading them! These 2 authors are my very favourite 😉

  7. Laura Likestoreadalot says:

    Loved the graphics!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Discover more from Reading After Midnight

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading