Obsessive book hoarder, and intense audible lover.
I loved the beginning but pre-climax to the conclusion of the novel, it became quite predictable. I found the premise intriguing but if the novel loses the intensity of the beginning of the novel-- I'm over it. I'll read her coming sequel and hope the story picks up again for me
The first book of a seven book series, The Bone Season, is a derivative YA tale with just enough of a twist to attract a big audience. Its a stew of Harry Potter, Twilight, and Hunger Games. Overall this novel had the temperment of a teenager: moody, melodramatic, and self-centered. Toss into this mix a little sexuality, violence, and drug use and there you have it.
As a middle aged man, I am definately not the demographic that this writer was trying to reach. I say skip it unless you are way into the YA genre. Despite all of the hype, I don't believe that The Bone Season has the strength to crossover to a wider audience like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games did.
This is both the debut novel by young British writer Samantha Shannon and the first in a lengthy series featuring the protagonist, Paige Mahoney.
Many people are asking whether this series might be the next Harry Potter. This is setting yourself up to be disappointed - comparisons will fall short of expectations. Rather, approach this novel as a fantasy novel set in Britain where magic exists and a host of clairvoyants are eking out their existences throughout the UK.
This is a tale of magic, of the spirit world, of seeking after freedom and liberty, of a world where people are trying to survive in spite of a system that seeks to destroy them. (For a more focusd plot summary that won't spoil things, you can trust the one Audible provides).
If you enjoy getting lost in the idea of another realm and its magic, you'll enjoy the time you spend in The Bone Season. Go in with an open mind, and I think you'll enjoy yourself.
A note on the narration - Alana Kerr reads very well, her accent is a pleasure to listen to, but sometimes you do need to concentrate to determine which character is speaking during conversations (there are no specific voices for many of the characters).
The story was interesting, once I got a grasp on what what going on, but the accent and made up terms made it confusing. (What is a molisher? It's clearly some kind of slang, but...)
Maybe. It seemed a bit of a rehash of Hunger Games and Divergent, with a bit of spiritual mysticism thrown in to make it "interesting"
Wow. Anyone? The narration was monotone, monotonous and not "acted" at all. During dialogue I was constantly losing track of who was meant to be speaking, and even during the action sequences I felt like the narrator was delivering a police report in court. I may have actually liked the story better with a different narrator.
No, the story wraps up pretty well. It did feel like there was a sequel setup, but I can't imagine how that could happen without it feeling like every other teen girl warrior series out there right now.
It's ok. I see why it was recommended for me. But it was a mediocre addition to the genre.
The speculative fiction premise and world-building efforts that have gone into this book are undeniably rich. The author has done a fine job of situating her story in an alternative history which pulls in threads of Anglo-Irish history, the explosive popularity of spiritualism in the 19th Century and the very contemporary rhetoric of the far right. She has also done a wonderful job with settings - especially that of an abandoned and resurrected Oxford.
But this is most definitely a piece of Young Adult fiction. Like 'Twilight' and, its erotic spin-off, 'Fifty Shades of Grey', 'The Bone Season' relies for much of its plot tension on the irrational and mercurial emotional shifts of its young female protagonist. There is little learning process, or actions based on acquired understanding - as one expects from a novel populated with and read by adults. Instead, a repetitive cycle of mood changes power much of her decision making process.
This is a pity, because the author has created some intriguing adversaries and questionable characters who, had they been explored with more maturity, could have resulted in a far more compelling and less irritating story.
I think young adults will love this book. I think they will relate to the main character and her volatile shifts in both intellect and agency. But for me, it felt like waves of artificial emotional tension masquerading as plot structure.
A good narrator can make a mediocre book come alive. I love having a story read to me - it's a wonderful escape.
This book has gotten a lot of hype and I suspect many will think it is warranted. Honestly, I might have enjoyed it with a different narrator. Ms. Kerr has a beautiful voice but it is too monotone and uneventful for my taste. I would probably employ her voice for some poetry rather than this highly energetic story. She left me bored and disinterested and even "sang" me to sleep a couple of times.
Other than that, I believe the story is a good one. It started out very strong, but waned during the middle and didn't really build well into any type of crescendo. I really wanted to like it, but didn't really.
As I understand it this is the first of a new series. I will try the next book in the series, but if the same narrator is used, I will read it instead to see if that helps me enjoy it.
I'm a singer, songwriter, musician, producer and music educator. I've spent the majority of my life wearing headphones . . .
This is less of a novel and more of a litany of things that happened to the lead character, Paige. That might have been OK in the hands of an adept narrator, but Alana Kerr makes the experience excruciatingly tedious.
I'd like to tell you what this novel is about but, to be honest, I really don't have a clue. It seems like a hodgepodge of bad sci-fi and dark fairytale with a nod to vampires and zombies for the sake of being trendy. Throw in a tad of Irish folklore and you need a flow chart to find out where you are in the story . . . which, for me, two thirds of the way through, is mostly nowhere.
I wish I could offer something positive or constructive to say about The Bone Season, but it's is really an awfully bad book. Sorry.
I feel like my headphones have fused to my head and my mp3 player has become a vital body part, it is kinda scary! Audible is my life.
I've found that the more audiobooks I listen to, the more important the narrator becomes and this one is flawless. Despite devouring literally thousands of audiobooks, this is my first review. I could feel these characters, perhaps even see their auras. Only wish I would have waited for the whole series before I began, as it will be torture to wait for the next one.
. . . like your dreams!!! The early chapters laid solid groundwork for a complex world with interesting characters. I anticipated a book somewhere between Magic Study and the Hunger Games, but with a fresh perspective.
However, relationships between characters remained shallow and wooden, and the unrelieved despair following the main character's imprisonment undermined the authenticity of the world, and pulled me out of the story. Foundational elements of the story were just completely unexplained: if this was deliberate, it was clumsy.
Almost as bad: moments of stupid were not infrequent, and quite jarring. (*Spoiler* Really, you have to wait for the friggin train that only comes ever 10 years to escape??? What does the train run on? Does it run on AIR? Could it run on TRAIN TRACKS, perhaps? Could you maybe WALK on those tracks to escape?! Seriously. *End Spoiler*)
The last third of the book was just drudgery.
Lovely accent. Wasted on this story.
Everything after chapter four.
It is reassuring to know that the publishing industry isn't needed as a gatekeeping to sort the wheat from the chaff. As we move toward more self-pub., I won't have to worry about a decline in quality.
I'm 30 years old, from the east coast of America, and my favorite books are realistic, but stretch the truth and the laws of physics.
This book found a great balance between fantasy and sci-fi, it was fantastical and imaginative without being full of fluffy, childish make believe, yet it was also futuristic and gripping, without being full of nerdy technology worship. The tone and essence of the book were somber and bleak, but not to the point of being whiney or melodramatic and overly heavy. The narration really played that up well, I think the reader was very well matched to the story.
It reminded me of the hunger games in its futuristic, dystopian vision of a concentration camp for human beings who had evolved into various forms of clairvoyance, and the new oppressive governments of Britain and Europe which sought to become prison empires. The author was descriptive and imaginative in her creation and detailed definition of the diversity of this advanced world and its neighboring dimensions and species.
The only issues I had with this authors first published work were her tendency to rush the story just a bit, and the rare, yet still sometimes present bit of seemingly unpolished, flowery prose which seemed to be thrown in to break up the concentrated pace of the story telling ("the night was so dark...so cold"...blegh). Yet, altogether it was a skilled attempt without too much emphasis on romance and no reliance on worn out narratives.
This is a really great read in my opinion, and I think it will appeal to a lot of different tastes. I really can't wait for the sequel, you hurry up and gimme it, Shannon! I need it!