Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

ThAround 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?

I just finished this book and am in deep mourning.
First of all, it's finished. No matted how many times I read it again, I will never again get the experience of discovering this world again. This world, these characters, this plot.
Second of all, it has ruined (ruined, I tell you) every other book I have read and loved in the past, and seriously every book I could possibly read next. 
This is just sad.
On  the other hand, how can I be sad when such a story is in existance in the world?

This was not a book. It was an experience. It was steps into another world. It was magic. 

Karou is a lovely, strong, mysterious heroine. Mysterious to everyone, including herself, which makes for a really amazing character. She is in search of answers, and the reader searches with her. I saw pieces of myself in every charcater, but mostly in her. She has a feeling of emptiness which she is constantly trying to fill -or pretend it doesn't exist- but she doesn't learn how to begin to face it, because she doesn't know who she is. By the end of the book, she has done some impressive progress and has grown a great deal.

The fantasy world in this book is the most exceptional I have ever encountered. 
Can I even compare it with Narnia? If I could, Narnia would fall short, so I won't do it. This world is original, and brilliant, and really really intricately drawn. I actually forgot myself and was expecting to see one of the strange but lovely creatures of the story as I was walkint in the street. 
Yes, it is that good. 
I would so love to visit it, although I would probably have to just contend myself with Prague, which is even more magical emerging from the author's pen, seeping with romance, mystery and theatre.

There is a unique romance in the book, and even talking about it doesn't do justice to its depth and fierceness, so I won't say anything more about it.

The best part about this book, hoever, is this:
It raises questions. A lot of questions.
About the meaning of life, the point of life, about love, about human relationships, about origins. 
About differences and the everyday war we all engage in. 
I loved the way it just put these themes out there and then let you, the reader, think them through without pushing the answers down your throat. 

I loved the lyrical way this book it was written, I loved the fact that I didn't breathe normally while I was reading it, I loved the fact that I want to meet this book in person and shake its hand in awe. 
I loved everything about this book.

This pic is a still from here

Rating: 5/5, or, to be more precise, a sky full of stars (and two moons).
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