Thursday, May 10, 2012

Book Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

I'm just going to come out and say that while this book is brilliant and unpredictable, it just wasn't my thing. And that's odd because I'm all about the fantasy genre. I support this book, I am glad this book was made, I think the author must be wonderful, but through the book, I just kept waiting for the end. After my questions were answered, "Who is Karou?" "What is Karou?" "What are the teeth for?", I lost interest. Those were the only things keeping me going, and then I was like, "Okay, good times. Thanks. Off to the fourth Green Rider book for me." It was very odd, because I feel that I really am part of the intended audience for this book, but we can't all like everything. There have been plenty of things that I've seen or read or heard where I've said, "This is a masterpiece, but I really don't care to see any more."

Okay, onto the rest. Karou is an excellent character, capable of taking care of herself and living her own life, which she does. She was raised by Chimeras, who are part human, part animal, and she enters their world through a doorway that works as a portal between the worlds. Her "family" deals in wishes and teeth, and it's every bit as weird as it sounds.

Karou currently lives in Prague in her own apartment, and she's been pretty much "on her own" her whole life (typical YA heroine, but that's to be expected), and visits the otherworld pretty frequently. She often goes to barter for teeth in other countries, which she uses the portal to get in and out of. Even though she has blue hair (a wish, not a natural thing), is well-traveled and knows many languages (more wishes, not a natural aptitude), she's not an annoying person.

Conflict of course comes, and I won't spoil the book for anyone, but Karou must bear the conflict and find out all of the answers to her questions: who is she? What is she? What are the teeth for?

It really was an excellent book, but there was a lot that didn't hold me. I guess that since I'm no longer a teenager, someone living on their own at a young age doesn't really appeal to me, nor does being an art student, staying out really late, having an ex-boyfriend to prank, or going to an uber-cool restaurant for goulash. If I were a teenager, I'd probably have been eating it all up, but as a single thirty-something with a career and responsibilities, Karou's life seems empty and sad to me. When the action started, though, I was really riveted. But then I got to the end, with a very clear cliffhanger, and I was able to shrug and put it away and move onto other books.

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