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Radiant Shadows

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Daughter of Smoke and Bone - Karou was raised by chimaera - half man/half animal creatures - and has access to making frivolous wishes come true, like having her hair grow in blue. With no explanation as to how she came to have chimaera as a foster family, and an uncanny feeling that she is missing something important inside, Karou can't help but question who she is.The pacing is absolutely wonderful! Slightly frightening details are almost casually revealed, and as the secrets of "Elsewhere" (the world Karou enters when visiting Brimstone, her foster father) are slowly and enticingly revealed, you begin to piece together an amazing tale involving a centuries old war between the Seraph and the chimaera - and Karou's place in between. The anticipation of having the full explanation is continued throughout the entire book, leaving you guessing and hungering for more. Just when you think you have something figured out, another clue is revealed and you're back to racking your brain for answers.Every feeling Karou has comes alive on the page. Her aching loneliness, her all-encompasing curiosity and her dawning understanding as things are revealed are all emotions that you experience with her. I was so invested with her character, that I was unable to see things beyond her perspective, and thus all the hints that had been accumulating only became clear when it was too late. Akiva's admission in the final chapter left me feeling hollow and empty, and I felt Karou's heart break alongside my own.I just don't even have the words to properly explain how well written this book is, how alive the worlds are as you're reading and how invested you become in each character; even the supporting characters are all well done!There's a popular quote from the beginning of this book going around, but I'm going to be a little different and go with a different one, that makes the most sense once you have finished the book:Once upon a time,a little girl was raised by monsters. But angels burned the doorways to their world,and she was all alone.All that being said, even though I really enjoyed pretty much everything about this book, there's something unmemorable about it, and for that reason I can't give it 5 stars. (Again wishing I had half stars, cause this definitely deserves a 4.5!)Originally published on my blog, Radiant Shadows