Daughter of Smoke & Bone, by Laini Taylor
Karou is just like any other 17 year-old girl. She goes to school. She hangs out with her friends whenever she’s free from work. She’s recovering from the heartbreak of first love. But Karou is also different as much as she is the same. Her blue hair isn’t just a dye job, it grows from her head that way. Karou attends art school in Prague and hangs with her friends at the Poison Kitchen, a place known for its WWI gas masks and tables made from coffins. As for her first love, she’s getting over him even though he keeps trying to win her back by jumping from the shadows pretending to be, what else, a vampire.
As for her parents, well that’s where things get interesting. Karou doesn’t exactly have parents, she has the Chimaeras. Brimstone is larger than life with rams’ horns and the ass of a lion. Issa is apparently a Victoria’s Secret model on top but her bottom half is a little cold-blooded, being mostly serpent. Twiga has trouble with low ceilings, having the neck of a giraffe and Yasri might snap with her sharp beak. Not the kind of family you bring your friends home to meet. But the Chimaeras are the only family Karou has known and she loves them and works for them gathering teeth from all over the world using portals to move from city to city…
By this point, I hope you’re at least a little intrigued by Karou because I certainly was and am glad I opened the pages to this wonderfully fantastic and lyrical novel. With its old world aura, Prague’s atmosphere suggests that any shadowy doorway may open to an unknown and unexplored world. Adding to Prague’s mystery, and layering her story, Taylor’s exquisite writing and turn of phrase draws the reader in with her expressive style, flashes of humor, and empathy. It is easy to get lost in the pages and wake up Elsewhere… Whether in our world or another, it’s always important to find acceptance and make your own place. This book is followed up by Days of Blood & Starlight.
Check the WRL catalog for Daughter of Smoke & Bone