Series: Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1
Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers on September 27th 2011
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
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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?
Do you remember that Taylor Swift song about Romeo and Juliet, Love Story?
It’s lyrics go something like this:
I’m a pretty little girl who knows nothing about literature
So I sing a song about starcrossed lovers
Whose only problem is that Daddy doesn’t approve
But it’s all good because we get married anyway.
Just like that cliffnote’s story about Romeo and Juliet!
We have a tendency with YA literature today, to have stories with the super duper happiest of happy endings where everything works out and true love’s only real complications are external difficulties, and self-esteem issues for the girl.
I’m trying to think of the perfect example here and because this review is full of cheap shots at easy targets I’m going to go with…
Come on down, Bella and Edward!
Now, don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with happy endings and butterflies and rainbows and kittens. They’re lovely, lovely things and in the hands of an accomplished author, they do well. There’s also nothing wrong with having a relationship that’s troubled by only external forces. Once again, in the right hands it’s fine. I’m not being a miserly old Grinch here. Okay, maybe a little bit, but moving on!
The problem is that in real life, relationships are usually impacted by internal factors. So when you base your story on perfection that can only be tainted by evil people trying to destroy your true love, and twist the story to finally reach that happily ever after, then what you sacrifice is often the very real, almost-tangible, relatable emotions that a more realistic, thoughtful storyline could bring.
And also, Romeo and Juliet is a TRAGEDY, Taylor Swift. A fucking tragedy. You know, like your singing? And that surprised face you make every time someone compliments you? You do it. You totally do it. You know you do.
Thank you, Kieran Culkan. You’re a fresh breeze amongst the stagnant world of apathetic performers.
Now what I love about Laini Taylor, other than everything, is that this woman is made of fairytales. I swear she’s like woven together by sweet kisses and dewdrops. She’s been sung into being by blind minstrels bathed in moonlight. She’s wrapped in gossamer and shrived in pure white swan feathers. You know, all that magical shit. She’s that. The woman is magic and she writes magic. If anyone could take Romeo and Juliet, mate it with a YA paranormal romance and produce a love child that people don’t want to drown at birth – then it would be Laini Taylor.
This book is powerful, emotive, heart breaking, anguishing!
What I’m saying…the point I’m trying to make here…the truth is… Laini Taylor kicked my heart in the ass.
And I LIKED it!