When I first read this book a year ago, I couldn’t wait to reread it. Literally the second I turned the last page, I looked forward to starting it again. So when the sequel, Days of Blood and Starlight, came out, I was ready to dive back into that world. And I have to say, the second read-through was just as satisfying as the first.
Karou is a normal girl living in Prague, doodling fanciful creatures in her sketchbook, and avoiding her boisterous ex. Except the pictures in her sketchbook are far more than just doodles, and when she visits home, its through a mysterious door that only opens from the inside; and the family waiting for her on the other side is decidedly not human.
Some books are less interesting the second time through, especially books that have a mystery woven into them. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is the opposite. Knowing the mystery just makes the story all that much more interesting, because this time you know what to look for.
This book has some really interesting, well-developed characters that have stuck with me since I first read it, and the lush writing creates really striking scenes; some books are hard to envision, but this one isn’t, even given it’s unusual settings and characters.
On this read-through, I was once again struck by how gorgeous the language is. However, now that I wasn’t so focused on trying to solve the puzzle of who Karou is, I was also able to notice some flaws. No book is perfect, and I found that this book’s greatest strength is also its greatest weakness; the descriptions are gorgeous, but sometimes there is too much describing and too little experiencing. It doesn’t change my love for this book, but it makes me really excited to read the sequel, because I love watching authors grow with each book they write.
This book was sort of two stories in one: one in the present, and one in the past. You really don’t discover that past story until the last forth of the book. I can’t wait to find out how all the characters react in the sequel; how all the consequences fall together.
Check out my first review of Daughter of Smoke and Bone on RainTown Press’ BlogTown.