Monday, 3 June 2013

The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

GoodReads Summary: 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.

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Expected publication date: 20/08/13

The Bone Season is a highly original and engaging read.  

The Bone Season has been classed as an ‘Adult’ book by the publisher, but it definitely has crossover appeal. It features characters that are 18+, touches on adult themes, and contains curse words (not much.) As someone who is over the age of 18 I would love to see more books like this, as it offers the best of both worlds – not YA, but not quite adult either. When I first heard the term 'New Adult' this is what I thought it would be. I was hoping that it would cover a wide range of genres, not just contemporary as it does now.

There have been articles floating around the internet saying that Shannon is the next J.K. Rowling, and this of course is a lot of pressure to put on an author. To me, The Bone Season is stylistically very different to Harry Potter. I think that it's best to go into it without the comparison in mind, because in my opinion it’s amazing in its own right. The only similarity I found between the two is the book deal: 7 fantasy books to be published by Bloomsbury.

Before I start gushing about what I loved about The Bone Season, I must admit that I had some issues with the opening of the book. There is quite a bit of info-dumping, so many new terms were thrown in without explanation that at times it felt a bit awkward. However, once my initial confusion had somewhat lessened I could not put the book down. In all honestly the info-dumping didn't take away from my reading experience, I was still able to enjoy and appreciate the world Shannon had created, because info-dumping aside the world building was very thorough.

The amount of imagination and detail that has gone into the world building is stunning. This is a book that I think will require patience from the reader, because it takes a while to grasp some of the ideas, and just when you think you've grasped them something new is thrown in. However, when everything does eventually fall into place the complexity of it all will just blow you away.

The story is set in London, 2059. In this world there are two types of people: Clairvoyants and Amaurotics. Clairvoyants have been out-casted by society. They are treated like criminals, and this ironically enough has forced them to join the criminal underworld of Scion London. Paige Mahoney is a part of a syndicate known as the Seven Seals. She works for Jaxon Hall, a notorious mime-lord who uses her to scout for information by breaking into others’ minds. Being an unusual type of voyant, a dreamwalker, means that she commits treason just by breathing. So far, though, she has stayed hidden under the radar. That is until one fatal day she is forced to use her abilities to get out of a life threatening situation and is discovered by the Scion. Chased down and thrown into Sheol 1, a prison of sorts run by a race known as the Rephaim, Paige is determined to escape.

Paige was a likable protagonist, strong and intelligent she adapted quickly to new situations. Warden was an equally intriguing character; it was interesting getting to know him as the story progressed. I didn't know if there was going to be a romance, and was surprised towards the end when the inkling of one began to form. Shannon does a brilliant job of straying away from the usual clich├ęs as the relationship between Warden and Paige is one that develops at a slow and natural pace. There was a build up of trust, respect, and friendship before the romance and I appreciated that. Another thing that the author excels at is creating tension, the chemistry, although subtle, had me glued to my Kindle.

The Bone Season is the kind of book that will stay with you long after you've finished reading it. Quite simply it is a riveting story, with complex characters and a richly crafted world. 

Rating:


39 comments:

  1. Oh, Wow! The next JK Rowling! That is a lot of pressure. I love when the world is well developed and detail oriented, it makes the story so much more engaging. Great review, Renu! I'll definitely look forward to reading The Bone Season.

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  2. You can't believe how happy I am right now! Those five hearts makes me so excited. <3 I'm a little happy that The Bone Season had nothing in common with Harry Potter plot-wise, because it would be bad news if TBS turned out to be some HP rip-off. Can't wait to get started on this! Lovely review, Renu. :)

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  3. I don't like it when book starts with many new themes and ideas and so on..It's hard to catch up but once you start reading you get to connect everything. Surprisingly I haven't heard of this series but it goes straight on my to-read list :) Great review.

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  4. I have such an issue with books and the info-dumping at the beginning. lol But I love stories that stay with you and it does sound good! Thanks for sharing!

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  5. Eep, I'm so glad you loved this! I just got it for review and can't wait to dig into it! :) I hope I love it as much as you do, despite the stylistic difficulties in the beginning. Lovely review, dear! :D

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  6. I really wasn't going to request this book, but your 5 star rating and gorgeous review has me convinced that I need to give it a try! I'm glad that you were able to stick through the initial info dumping and end up with a book that you thoroughly devoured!

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  7. I was looking for a good review for Bone Season! Thank goodness it rated 5/5. The world-building is stunning? I'm going to buy this book.
    Thanks for the lovely review :D

    -Dannielle

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  8. I often find it hard to get into a book with a lot of info dumping at the start, and usually have my post its handy in case I need to flip back to remember something. I'm glad to see you enjoyed it so much anyway though. Great review Renu :)

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  9. This seems like a story that might have been hard for me to get into, but likely worth it. I'm glad you enjoyed it so much. Great review!

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  10. Ahh, awesome review :D Sigh. Haven't really heard about this book until about a week ago. And now I neeeeed it. You make it sounds amazing. Except for the info-dumping, but I think I can enjoy that :) Maybe. But oh. The world sounds awesome! As does the characters :D Sigh. Thank you for sharing. <3 So glad you loved this book :)

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  11. Ahhhh sounds so GOOD!! I dislike it when they say a book will be the next Harry Potter or Twilight or what have you. A book should be good in its own right and not have to be compared with anything else - so I'm glad you feel this was good in its own right. You've made me so excited to read this one with your review!!

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  12. When I got onto your blog and saw The Bone Season cover, I did a little dance on my seat. After all the hype it's getting, I'm pretty nervous. Bloomsbury sending me a copy right now acually and cannot wait to begin. Such a shame the start was hard to get into- not a big fan of that. :/

    Brilliant review, Renu! <33

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  13. This actually sounds like an NA novel that I might just want to read. I've been so hesitant to try this new genre because I'm not sure it will satiate my literary appetite, but you definitely make a strong case for this one, Renu. The characters sound phenomenal, and the plot...well, I'm sold! Great thoughts! :)

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  14. Treat people like criminals and expect them to not be, I don't think so either. Fantastic review Renu! I also wish NA was scene as more then just contemporary books, but also books that college students can appreciate in a paranormal realm. Info coming at once is annoying to me too, but I'm sure I'll like the story. Thanks for introducing me to the Bone Season!

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  15. YAY! I'm so glad you liked this! I am super excited to read this. I was warned of the info dumping beforehand so I shall keep that in mind. It sounds so unique. Wonderful review. <3

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  16. I've not really read any New Adult novels. For some reason I never seem to empathise with older main characters than I do with ones around my own age.

    This book does sound pretty cool though. Maybe not really my thing as my mind tends to drift from complex storylines but I'm sure loads of other people could love it just like you did!

    Great review! :D

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  17. Wow ... this is the first I'm really hearing about this book. It sounds great! I love that it's set so far in the future.

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  18. I completely agree that this has crossover appeal! Books like this is what I consider NA, and I'm hoping that it will be the start of more NA stories outside of the contemporary genre. I enjoyed this one too, as you know, but I do agree that there is some info-dumping here and there. Despite that, I thoroughly enjoyed the world-building and can't wait to dive into the next one once it's released. Lovely review, Renu!

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  19. 5 hearts Renu!!!!! I just got a copy of this at BEA last week and I'm so excited to know you loved it so much. Thanks for sharing about the info dump at the beginning, now I'll be braced for it and it likely won't bother me at all. Love that it's in between YA and Adult, as someone who's also over 18 (okay, a good ways over 18), I just love time period in life New Adult encapsulates. Beautiful review!

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  20. How haven't I heard of this before now? Imaginative world-building and a slow-burning, chemistry filled romance that took you by surprise? AND it's devoid of the regular cliches? I'm loving the sounds of this!

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  21. Sounds good even though I haven't heard of it, and that it has good crossover potential

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  22. Ooh, I really do love books that linger so, so much, and I'm glad that's exactly what this book was for you, Renu! Even though I seriously dislike info-dumping, I think I'd be able to get over it and really enjoy this book, as you did. The crossover appeal is really exciting- maybe this book will open up another side of the New Adult genre? Just a thought. That aside, this book seems like it has everything that I want in a book- unique ideas, likable characters, and a slow developing romance.

    I'm already so excited for this book! Thanks for putting this one on my radar, Renu. Lovely review, my dear! <3

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  23. This is my first time seeing this book and I am convinced I must check it out. I am all about unique ideas, Likable characters slow romance and great world building. I just dealt with Richelle Mead's Gameboard of the Gods so I am all practiced up in my patience. I will see if I can still snag a copy of this. Thanks for the heads up!

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  24. Fantastic review! I definitely can see how you didn't like the info-dumping, but I'm so happy that the crossover appeal of it and the fact that Paige was a likable protagonist redeemed that beginning part! :) I got The Bone Season at BEA and it looks SOO good and I'm really excited to see how the seven books work out, even though it sounds tons different from Harry Potter :) Harry Potter was kind of like a kid to YA crossover, too, and The Bone Season sounds like a YA to adult crossover :)

    PS—Thank you so much for the birthday wishes <333

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  25. Excellent review! I am so looking forward to this one! I adore the cover too.

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  26. Wow this sounds really good. I am happy to see that you loved it so much. I have been seeing ARC's of this one making their way around but didn't know too much about it. The world building sounds phenomenal! I am definitely going to have to look into this one! Great review!

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  27. I haven't see this one around but it sounds like something I would really enjoy for sure! I think I will add it to my Goodreads books.
    Great review!

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  28. I'm glad you liked this! I'm beginning to see a lot of great reviews pop up for it all over the bookish community, and I'm super excited to get my hands on it in August.

    New follower via bloglovin'. :D

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  29. Wow, this review has me SO excited to read this! I've heard a bit of buzz about this book, but I really haven't read many reviews yet. I'm so glad to hear you found the world so fascinating and that the info-dump didn't even get to you. Normally I hate that, but it sounds like the author handled it well enough. What a fascinating futuristic world! I can't wait to read this. Lovely review! :-)

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  30. Great review, Renu! I think this would be the coolest 'NA' novel I've come across- it would certainly change my opinion of the genre :) Definitely my sort of book, thanks for the heads up on this novel :)

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  31. Awesome!! I've seen The Bone Season pop up on Goodreads before, but never bothered to even read its summary. Now I have to immediately add it to my wishlist and get a copy ASAP! This truly sounds like an orginial story, it sounds like a mixture of almost everything. I'll give it some time in the beginning. Thanks for your review!

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  32. I had never heard about this book before, but wow, it sounds awesome. The details and everything! Will keep an eye out for this one! :)

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  33. Okay, now I'm SUPER glad I picked this one up at BEA. I was slightly nervous when the publicist at Bloomsbury pitched this to me, but combined with the lure of maps and Mandee from Vegan YA Nerds's urging, I felt less anxious. Then I got home with it and I grew unsure again. THIS MAKES ME SO CERTAIN I'M GOING TO LIKE IT. I can't wait to start it!

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  34. This sounds AMAZING! I have heard of this before but not really been intrigued by it. I'll definitely look out for this :) Thanks for the great review!

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  35. I'm a huge fan of slow building romances and likeable protagonists so this one sounds fantastic, Renu! I also really like that this is New Adult and have to agree that books under that label that I've skimmed have been disappointing. They all seem to be contemporaries with similar plots and become more about sex than anything else once the MC decides to get together with the romantic interest.

    Oh, and did you by any chance update your page recently? Your posts aren't getting updated in my blogroll :(

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  36. This is the first review I've read about this book and BOY does this sound good :D I'm really interested in this book. Info-dump can be a bit confusing in the beginning, but I don't really mind it if it's fixed later on. The setting and the protagonist sound really good and I love it when there is a slow build-up & chemistry in the romance :)

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  37. I really hadn't thought of picking this up until your review, Renu. It sounds very original and I like that the romance progresses at a natural pace. If I know going in that a read requires patience I'll hunker down and take it slow to get the details to soak in. Great review! :)

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  38. The Bone Season is a highly complex novel with an incommensurable set of characters and an intense plot line. While the first quarter can be fairly daunting- with ranges of bumps such as platitudinously boring snippets and info dumping- The Bone Season has a lot to give and promise for future instalments.The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine—a young woman learning to harness her powers in a world where everything has been taken from her. It also introduces an extraordinary young writer, with huge ambition and a teeming imagination. Samantha Shannon has created a bold new reality in this riveting debut.

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  39. Currently reading this book! :D So far, so good about half way through.

    Also, I can't for the life of me figure out how you get grey boxes like the ones you use in your blog posts, any help please?

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