Ashleigh Paige

I'm a full-time college sophomore pursuing my B.A. in English with hopes of one day working as an editor. Cats, musicals, documentaries about cults/disasters/tragedies, and curse words are just a few of my favorite things. Also, check out our blog or I WILL FIND YOU.

Daughter of Smoke & Bone - Laini Taylor Also appears on The Screaming Nitpicker. I received my copy through Amazon Vine.It was difficult to come up with a review that was more intelligent than "YESYEYESYESYEYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYES" times infinity, so here goes something.Raised by the chimaeras from birth, Karou is an art student living in Prague and runs errands for Brimstone, the chimaera she pretty much considers her own father. Picking up teeth for him here and there isn't so bad (usually) and she gets wishes in return, letting her do things like give her wings or make her hair grow out of her head naturally blue. Then the black handprints begin showing up on doorways and Karou meets Akiva, a seraph soldier in the war against the chimaeras.They fall hard and fast and he may be the key to helping Karou find out where she came from and who she is. But could knowing cost her everything?I could swear the author has been silently watching and reading all the grievances YA PNR readers have with the genre because the book manages to avert pretty much all possible problems even when they come close (like a guy watching a girl while she sleeps--don't worry, he doesn't do it for long because he figures out he shouldn't). The characters are vivid, the world-building with the seraph and the chimaera is clear and original, and I want to read it all over again when I just finished it a few hours ago. The descriptions of Prague and all the other locales visited over the course of the book really come to life and you can see the Poison Kitchen as if you were standing right in front of it.A little more on the characters: Karou is exactly the kind of heroine I like. Flawed, but human and very enjoyable to read about instead of painful. Akiva, the love interest any maybe even co-protagonist considering the sizable portion of the book he narrated, wasn't too bad either. While they fall in love very quickly and this is normally a turn-off for me, something clicked this time and it felt right. Their relationship even has a healthy dynamic! Imagine my surprise that for once, the love interest didn't keep things from the heroine just to keep her from falling out of love with him or getting angry and he actually trusted her.I'm not a prosey person. I'm not. In the never-ending battle of pretty prose vs. constant plot, the plot always wins despite my appreciation for good prose. When I run across those rare books that have both plot and prose so beautiful I wish I could write like that, they have my heart and my attention. Smoke and Bone is one of those books. I don't like omnipresent third-person point of view either, but it was the perfect type of narration for the novel. It read almost like a fairy tale, similar to the writing in her previous YA novel Lips Touch: Three Times, a book I also loved and that led me to Smoke and Bone.The book isn't even out yet and I'm hungry for the next installment! I guess I have only two things left to say. One is that you--yeah, you, with the funny look on your face--should read this book. The second is screw the ARC, I want a hardcover. I'm so happy and lucky I snagged an ARC before they ran out, but I want final copies of the books I really loved and I want to give it a proper sale. For writing such a wonderful book, the author deserves the slice of the money pie she'll earn when I buy it.