Friday, 18 November 2011

FANTASY REVIEW: Daughter of Smoke and Bone - Laini Taylor

Release Date: 29/09/11


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.


I love a new series when it lands as you never know where the tale is going to take you or the way that the author is going to lead you by the hand. However the key trait that I look for in any book, and one that’s key to help keep me glued from the first page to the last, is that its got to have a cracking lead character.

Within this book, that role is taken by Karou who is smart, has many admirable attributes and above all else is as complex as the plot line which means that you can never be too sure which way the story will go. It’s clever, the prose is decent and the pace is something that works very well for the majority of the title however for me, Daughter of Smoke and Bone felt more like a novella stretched with the last third added just to extend it to novel length. It will be interesting to see what happens next and I’ll definitely give it a go, but please stay with it and keep going to the end to get the full flavour.

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