Before I launch into my review, how about a few fun facts? (You know you like this idea!) Did you know….
– The Bone Season weighs 750g (1.6 pounds)
– is 4cm (2″) thick
– first of seven books
– and the author is only in her early 20s!
Thank you Bloomsbury Australia for the review-copy! The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon hit shelves in August, 2013.
It is the year 2059. Several major world cities are under the control of a security force called Scion. Paige Mahoney works in the criminal underworld of Scion London, part of a secret cell known as the Seven Seals. The work she does is unusual: scouting for information by breaking into others’ minds. Paige is a dreamwalker, a rare kind of clairvoyant, and in this world, the voyants commit treason simply by breathing.
But when Paige is captured and arrested, she encounters a power more sinister even than Scion. The voyant prison is a separate city—Oxford, erased from the map two centuries ago and now controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. These creatures, the Rephaim, value the voyants highly—as soldiers in their army.
Paige is assigned to a Rephaite keeper, Warden, who will be in charge of her care and training. He is her master. Her natural enemy. But if she wants to regain her freedom, Paige will have to learn something of his mind and his own mysterious motives.
Samantha Shannon was born and raised in West London. She recently finished her degree in English Language and Literature at St Anne’s College, Oxford, where she specialised in Emily Dickinson and Principles of Film Criticism.
In 2012 she signed a book deal with Bloomsbury Publishing to publish the first three books in a seven-book series, beginning with The Bone Season. Film rights to the novel were optioned by Andy Serkis’s London-based production company The Imaginarium Studios in 2012, and acquired by Twentieth Century Fox and Chernin Studios in October 2013.
Well, that was not what I was expecting at all. Wow. I think I need a coffee. Or a nap. I deserve a nap after 460-pages of a book I didn’t understand, right??
The “not what I expected” part is my fault because, a) my eyes zeroed in on the “criminal underworld” part of the blurb and skipped the “clairvoyant” part. And b) Paige is 19 so I thought it was a Young Adult book. Ah, no. Maybe it could be YA, but it reads like Adult. (On Goodreads it’s shelved as both…because that’s not confusing at all.)
My brain died! I just…I just didn’t get it. At all. And my bookish soul is weeping because I wanted to like this book so badly. It was so complicated (and huge) and detailed (and huge) and intense (and huge). Right now I feel like banishing myself to the picture book section, because I just felt like a preschooler trying to read an Encyclopaedia. I feel dumb. And I don’t like reading books that make me feel dumb.
Part of my problem was we’re thrown into a world that basically has it’s own language. Even after 100-pages they were tossing words and phrases that I had noooo idea what meant. And then they started abbreviating everything! No! NO. Like this:
“So they’re not really numa.”
“Still dangerous,” Liss said. “Rotties can use them. The last thing we need is an ethereal weapon Scion can use.”
Julian shook his head. “Scion would never use numa. They’re repulsed by clairvoyance.”
“Not by the Rephaim.”
“I doubt they like the Rephs,” I said. “They’re clairvoyant. They just don’t have a choice but to obey, with the Emim at their doorstep.” THE BONE SEASON (pg. 124)
Okay, sorry, can you run that by me again IN ENGLISH?
But this could very well just be me! I have a looot of friends on Goodreads, and most of them have rated this book 5 and 4-stars! Wow! It’s also sold in 20 countries and shortlisted for awards. Sooo…for now, I’m just going to assume it’s my brain that rejects this book.
But it did have cool aspects! Like it was sort of dystopian (I like dystopian) and it was set in England (sort of). And…and…it was…different.
Characters? Paige was pretty tough. Okay, everyone was tough in this book. Because if they weren’t, they died. Blood splatters, okay? Once they’ve been flattened with a fist, they get up and are flattened because they’ve been dream walking, and then they’re flattened because they’re slaves to sadistic angel/vampire…things. (They’re not called angels or vampires…but they appear to drink blood at times and fallen angels are mentioned.) Basically it’s gritty. I admire the characters just for surviving.
But you know what? This is a series of…wait for it…seven books! Um, yes, my jaw did just drop.
Okay, self-five for me. I did it. I got through it. I’m just going to take that nap now.
Cait loves Goodreads. She likes the clicking sound it makes as she marks billions of books to-read. She likes organising her books by genre. She likes counting them. She likes admiring covers in their neat little lines. When she’s not on Goodreads (which, lets face it, is a sad time), she’s at the library doing pretty much the same thing. Currently, she’s reading FIRE AND FLOOD by Victoria Scott.