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4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (51,957 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Laini Taylor Narrator: Khristine Hvam Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy Release Date: September 2011 ISBN: 9781611139655
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Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages—not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

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Quotes & Awards

  • “In a literary landscape teeming with all things supernatural, it’s an impressive feat for a YA fantasy book to come along that feels thrillingly fresh and new. But that’s just what Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone does. The smartly plotted, surprising, and fiercely compelling read will hook you from its opening pages. (Seriously, cancel all plans once you begin; you won't want to put it down)…In Taylor’s richly imagined universe, angels are not always good and wishes come from pain, but teenagers are reassuringly the same. Bring on book 2! A-”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Heart wrenching and beautiful, this novel’s story line is addictive and romantic, and the characters, even the secondary ones, are multidimensional and interesting. But what stands out most is Taylor’s ability to bring to life a sleepy, snowy Prague, a sun-drenched Marrakesh and a fantasy world entirely of her own making. The magic is seductive and dangerous, as magic should be, and when the focus shifts suddenly from the present to the past, the reader is somehow not thrown off course—in fact, it is there that the book becomes impossible to put down.”

    RT Book Reviews (4½ stars, Top Pick!)

  • “A masterful mix of reality and fantasy…exquisitely written and beautifully paced, the tale is set in ghostly, romantic Prague…Talro interlaces cleverly droll depictions of contemporary teenage life with equally believable portrayals of terrifying otherworldly beings.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “The plot hinges on major contrivances, but along with writing in such heightened language that even casual banter often comes off as wildly funny, the author crafts a fierce heroine with bright-blue hair, tattoos, martial skills, a growing attachment to a preternaturally hunky but not entirely sane warrior and, in episodes to come, an army of killer angels to confront. Rarely—perhaps not since the author’s own Faeries of Dreamdark: Blackbringer—does a series kick off so deliciously.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Taylor has created a variety of worlds, time frames, and creatures with such detail and craft that all are believable. Blurring the boundaries of good and evil, slaves and owners, human and beast, she careens readers from sadness to love, from the predictable to the amazing, and from the outlandish to the bizarre. Readers will look forward to the suggested sequel to this complex, exciting tale.”

    Booklist

  • “Interwoven with this deliciously romantic tale of loss and hope are the gorgeous imageries of ancient cities, mythical creatures, and mysterious other worlds. Laini Taylor’s storytelling is masterful and her character development is outstanding. Brought to brilliant life by narrator Khristine Hvam, this fabulous story will enthrall listeners—and the cliffhanger ending will leave them clamoring for the sequel.”

    School Library Journal

  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month, September 2011
  • A 2012 Booklist Best Book for Young Adults
  • A 2011 Publishers Weekly Best Book: Children's Fiction
  • Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books for Teens, 2011
  • Winner of the 2012 Audie Award
  • A 2014 Abraham Lincoln Award Nominee
  • A 2014 California Young Reader Medal Nominee for YA
  • A 2011 New York Times Editor’s Choice
  • A 2011 New York Times Notable Book for Children
  • A 2011 Library Journal Best Book
  • A 2012 Children’s Book Award Nominee for Teen Choice Book of the Year

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Calvertjones | 12/17/2013

    " This is a quietly thrilling, marvelous novel that I found extremely moving. To give a quick spoiler-free synopsis, it takes place in Prague, where readers are introduced to an eighteen year old named Karou. There are several mysterious aspects of Karou, which are gradually presented to readers in smallish doses that effectively inspire curiosity and ultimately create significant suspense. All these curious aspects of Karou, rest assured, come together in a brilliant, heartrending, and curiously believable package revealed toward the end. (So, this is not a "Lost"-like situation, with strange minutia and puzzles presented apparently just for the sake of it, with limited long-term planning.) As an example, Karou travels around the world to collect teeth. She also wears a necklace whose beads allow her to make small-scale wishes, such as turning her hair blue or causing another person to experience uncontrollable itching. And, her home seems to be an old-fashioned shop where a father-like figure serves as a merchant and bears a curious resemblance to our myths of what the devil looks like--horns and all. Giving more away would lead to spoilers, so I'll leave it at that. Why is this book so great? First, you will find that the novel is written and paced with extraordinary skill, which places it, in terms of artistry, a cut above, say, The Hunger Games. I also loved The Hunger Games, and comparisons are bound to be made because of the female-centered action/adventure element in common. The way The Hunger Games was written, though, always felt somewhat manipulative to me, lacking in nuance, as if instructing the reader with cue cards to "Cry here!" and "Clap here!" and "Feel sorry for Katniss here" and "Reflect on the burden of war here!" Again, I do love The Hunger Games, but I'm trying to illustrate why Taylor's writing is superior. It is far more nuanced, and there is genuine openness to interpretation; you will not always be sure "how to react" or how the writer wants you to react to situations. The Hunger Games had brilliant pacing--I dare anyone to stop reading it. But Daughter of Smoke and Bone had superior artistry in writing. Second, the plot is extremely creative and original. I can almost guarantee that you don't know what's coming in Daughter of Smoke and Bone. As a hint, she's not secretly a witch, she's not part of a long bloodline of vampires, witches, ghost hunters, were-humans, etc. She doesn't possess secret powers. She's not part alien. She's not a vampire hunter or a spy. She's not involved in a government conspiracy, in fighting one, or in a secret Matrix-like prison or Hunger Games-like arena. The plot is genuinely new, and fascinating in its depth and richness. Third, secondary characters are fantastic. They are not as predictable and dull as is often the case. (Fortunately, Hunger Games doesn't have this problem either--great secondary characters there too, such as Haymitch.) Fourth, Karou herself is complex and interesting. Fifth, the love story aspect of the story is absolutely fascinating, done almost "in reverse" though I won't give away how that might be the case. Great novel, though it does end on a cliffhanger--it is the first of a trilogy, and the second novel is out and even better. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Elif | 12/17/2013

    " I tried to like this book, because I've heard so many good things about it. But I didn't like it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mohsena | 12/5/2013

    " This book is absolutely amazing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Blackinky | 11/26/2013

    " The romance part made me gag too much and miss everything else. Not interested in continuing the series. I did like Brimstone, though "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jess | 11/8/2013

    " loved it, read the second one and cant wait for the third. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michelle | 9/25/2013

    " This was such a great read! It was creative and engaging. I would definitely recommend it to other YA lovers. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marie Godley | 9/9/2013

    " an amazing read full of mystery and deep characters. can't wait to read the next book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nicola Fordham | 9/1/2013

    " Couldn't put this down & I hate fantasy, but it's like a painting of words, I fell in love with the characters the way they look the story & it's parallels with Romeo & Juliet. I am really concerned already that there isn't a 3rd one yet!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amelle | 5/3/2013

    " So much love for this book! Just wow! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Scarlet | 4/21/2013

    " OMG! I love love love this book.... Must read this book!!!... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Caroline Morris | 2/4/2013

    " Captivated - absolutely loved this book - straight onto number two :) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Abby Kirkness | 1/12/2013

    " Love this book the story was amazing really sucked me in! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ninjagaltnw | 12/30/2012

    " AWESOME BOOK! CAN'T WAIT FOR THE 3RD!!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lane | 10/28/2012

    " There are so many incredible layers in this book, and combined they equal more than just the some of their parts. An amazing book! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pauline | 6/10/2012

    " Enjoyed the plot, though the writing was subpar at times. The last part--where Karou realizes who she is--really brought it together. Looking forward to reading the next one, though not so happy about having to wait until 2014 for the third book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melanie Mobijohn | 3/20/2012

    " i loved, loved this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shannon | 11/7/2011

    " I would give this 10 stars if I could. An absolutely amazing, beautifully written, gripping story. I loved it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Yasmary | 11/7/2011

    " Loved it. The writing is funny, upbeat and so easy to follow. The only thing I wasn't too sure about was the change of pace 3/4 of the way into the book. Other than that, the book is wonderful! Can't wait for the next. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Catarina | 11/5/2011

    " The story was pretty great. :) Issa is awesome, being half snake and all. Light read but really good. And she is in a Art´s scholl? Loved it so original, and her wishing necklace - i would love some of them xD "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shannon | 11/4/2011

    " Beautiful! The imagery was amazing, as was the story. Loved the book! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Emalee | 11/3/2011

    " the daughter of smoke and bone is a must read. Laina taylor brings a beautiful new aspect to angels,demon and makes us question our very world and the religion we choose to follow. her charaters will stay stuck within ur soul as u flip through this brand new world she has created:) "

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About the Author
Author Laini Taylor

Laini Taylor is the author of several novels, including Days of Blood and Starlight, Daughter of Smoke and Bone, the Dreamdark books Blackbringer and Silksinger, and the National Book Award finalist Lips Touch: Three Times.

About the Narrator

Khristine Hvam has won five AudioFile Earphones Awards, placed three times as a finalist for the prestigous Audie Award, and won the Audie for best narration in 2012 and 2013. She studied acting for the theater and film, and her voice can be heard in Pokémon, World of Warcraft, and in various television and radio commercials.