Title: The Bone Season
Author: Samantha Shannon
Series: The Bone Season
Book #: 1
Reading Level: YA (?)- NA (?)
Goodreads Rating: 4.02
T.B.Published: Aug. 20th, 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 is not the next J.K. Rowling, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Sure everybody wants to read the next Harry Potter series, but truth is there is only one. What Samantha Shannon has been able to create resonates more to me with authors like Cassandra Clare, the way she created her world and characters. The Bone Season has great characters, a fascinating plot, and good writing. Overall it was a no brainer why this young author got that 7 book deal, she totally deserves it.
I can definitely see how this book is such a big deal around these parts, and how it got such a huge deal. While slowly paced for the most part it still manages to pack a punch. It felt very mature, much more than the rest of the YA novels out today. Maybe it's just the author's way of writing the story, but The Bone Season felt not quite YA, more like NA on the precipice of becoming a flesh out adult novel.
While there is no witty banter (sigh, I am a sucker for that, that would have made it a 5 star) the world created is fleshed out and has layers to it. It isn't simply futuristic London that might as well just be like the London of today, but it is placed in a completely different historical time line. The plot is very interesting and I cannot wait to see how exactly this series is going to be fleshed out to cover 7 books. There must be a plan already worked out, and I think I can trust miss Shannon to truly give us a series that will not only entertain us but leave us begging for more. I see a lot of potential.
Paige, our heroine, reminds me of Katniss in The Hunger Games. Her instinct to survive is very finely tuned, and she has a "I won't bow down to you" attitude. She is very strong and her clairvoyant ability is very cool. As the series progressed we got to know her better, looking at her past in flash back scenes, but I still think there is more to her. By the end her hard exterior started to crack and we were able to peek into the soft gooey middle, but just barely. I want to get to know this girl. I also want to get to know Warden a little better. He is Paige's Rephaim "master". The one to take her under his wing once she is captured and turn over to the slavery colony. He trains her, and helps her throughout the novel... and I still don't know exactly why. He is at the beginning very cold and distant but you could tell he was trying to walk a fine line between how his people thought the humans should be treated and how he thought the humans should be treated. I liked Warden, he reminded me of Dimitri from Vampire Academy, only with no western novels (instead Warden liked to listen to old records). Yes, Warden is kind of a badass.
While Paige and Warden were very well explored I still feel like we should know more about the Seven Seals, who they are, their background, etc. But then I have to stop and remind myself that there are 7 BOOKS in this series, so there is time to further explore everything to finer detail.
The one thing that did bother about The Bone Season is that at times it was a drag. It moved quite slowly, even though it had quite a few action scenes. I understand the need to take it slow with the plot, but it might be something that might turn people off. My advice? Don't put it down, read it to the very last page. The complexity of the story/world/characters... it's just at the end so very worth it! I really cannot wait for the second novel, I want to see where Samantha Shannon is taking this series. Hopefully we don't have to wait a year for every single book... but I would certainly wait if I had to.
PS: I am really hoping the Glossary for all the different terms in this novel is in the front of the book when it is released because having it by the end of the novel was annoying! I didn't even know it was there until like halfway through! So yeah, Glossary is better in the front.
ARC acquired via BEA in exchange for an honest review.