It wasn't a bad book at all, but sometimes I don't feel as invested in some aspects. I'm trying to be more discriminating with my stars here! I accept...moreIt wasn't a bad book at all, but sometimes I don't feel as invested in some aspects. I'm trying to be more discriminating with my stars here! I accepted the relationship and saw how it made sense in the end and how everything turned out, but the change in Gwen just seemed too sudden for me. I found both Gwen and Sabin to be interesting characters, but I almost found myself more interested in reading Gwen interacting with other people. I didn't feel this way with Ashlyn, but maybe that's because Maddox was utterly possessive and these later men are often pushing their women away because oh, no, it's a weak point! Maybe I'm cynical from reading books with "fated mates" for a while, but damn. Guys. Seriously. If you feel it in your bones, then maybe stop shoving her away. I'll give it to Sabin, at least his demon didn't just totally roll over for her at first.
I did respect the twists though. Nicely done. I wish the other women could be a little more present, but heck, it's not like all the boys are around every book all the time. Anya sure shoves her way in though, but I wouldn't expect anything else. The thing I really liked is that the story wasn't forgotten, new warriors were brought in, and now you're left itching for a few certain other books.
Also the cameo from the Proto-Valkryie herself was cute. I knew they had some crossover! (less)
"Daughter of Smoke and Bone" is the first book from the book club my friends and I have established. I think it was pretty good, but then I just sat h...more"Daughter of Smoke and Bone" is the first book from the book club my friends and I have established. I think it was pretty good, but then I just sat here trying to shake my kindle in hopes that the second book might just pop up out of thin air. It didn't work.
We follow Karou, a 17 year old girl with naturally growing blue hair living in Prague who loves to draw these mix-matched monsters that her friends thinks are just so creative, but then it turns out that they're real. I'll say it, I started the book late because the first couple of pages just didn't draw me in. "Januaryness"? It's cute, but it's something I'd say in an email or chat with a friend or in a social update, not in a book. I promise you, the writing improved from there. Maybe it was to give a silly, childish start to something that got a great deal more serious as things progressed.The wish concept was introduced in good time and gave Karou's nature and history a bit more depth. She's young, she's mischievous, but who wouldn't use wishes to make your pompous hottie ex-boyfriend get some temporary itches in some bad places when he was staring you down as he modeled in your life drawing class? She was kinder than I think some people might be with that type of power. Still, she's not a girl that wants to pain herself with that male any longer, so you respect her.
Karou herself didn't exactly pull me in, though she wasn't a half bad heroine. Her arguments with Brimstone harkened to your usual teen fights with their parents, not being treated with respect, not being including, wanting more than they may be prepared to handle. I was more interested in her friends. The way she acts with Zuzana is how people act with friends. (view spoiler)[The fact that she eventually couldn't keep this giant secret any longer was believable. (hide spoiler)] I'm curious if she, Mik, and Kaz will find a way to appear in the next book, but at this time I can't be certain how. The chimera and seraphim had an expected relationship, and several characters just seem like throw away people, like Twigga, so I'd have liked maybe more about some of them. Issa and Brimstone were my favorites, Issa with her good-natured nurturing and then Brimstone who cared but didn't easily show it. (view spoiler)[I appreciated that both sides had antagonist characters, like Thiago with the chimera and well, almost all of the seraphim that we met besides Kiva, but I'm expecting to see more about them in the next book. (hide spoiler)] (view spoiler)[The insta-romance always gives me pause. It might have made sense for Akiva and Karou, but I'd have almost liked more doubt. I don't know, insta-romance is hard to find agreeable points in. If two characters are supposed to be soul mates, then how quickly can they know? Do they need to get to know each other or is it just a matter of their souls singing to one another, to pull from the text? But then, how slowly could you realistically establish a romance in a young adult novel where it's clearly a large factor of the story? Even in a series, you would expect a love interest to be established from the first book, and Kaz just won't cut the mustard here. Then there's the fact that Akiva almost killed Karou when they first met. I'd have expected more paranoia on her behalf, but maybe I'm thinking in too realistic terms. (hide spoiler)] I expected the end. (view spoiler)[The longer they stayed in the flashback, the way Akiva broke down when he realized? (hide spoiler)] It was more and more obvious as things progressed, but it still jarred me. The abruptness was a shock! I will be returning to this series when the next book comes out because I have a few questions. (view spoiler)[What's with Akiva's mom's tribe? Is Brimstone really dead? Seriously, he was ancient, they could easily have kept him alive somehow. What did Razgut do to get ousted? (hide spoiler)] Will we ever meet Karou's fake grandma?["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)