Fast-paced, fun and dramatic – if stark and cold – The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

Book Reviews, Book Thoughts, children's books, teen book reviews, Writing, Writing Thoughts

Paige Mahoney, a dreamwalker who can break into people’s minds, has lived in danger of discovery for years – but when she is captured on a train and taken off to an unimagined separate society she discovers more and more about the corrupt and restrictive world she lives in. She is assigned to a gaoler who doesn’t seem to be what he is meant to be, forms alliances and makes enemies in the strange world that has become hers, desperate for the rest of her crew back in London. But forces are rising all around her, and Paige seems to be key to it all…

Sorry the synopsis is a bit vague, I read this ages ago now and have leant someone my copy! I read this because I had heard so much about it, because the author Samantha Shannon is extremely responsive to her fans on twitter, and because I found it for sale on the book barge. I was even more excited when I realised that the author had signed it! In general, though I wasn’t really captivated by the world it was set in, I really enjoyed this book!

This would be better if it wasn’t trying to reference Arabian Nights – A Thousand Nights by E.K.Johnson

Book Reviews, Book Thoughts, teen book reviews


When the infamous Lo-Melkhiin whose 300 previous brides died comes to her village to choose a bride, our unnamed narrator knows he will choose her sister, the most beautiful girl there. Determined to save her, she ensures she will be chosen, and journeys with across the desert. Plunged into a new world where death probably awaits her every morning, she finds that her sacrifice has bestowed her with powers that might just change everything…

I expected, and wanted this to be a retelling of Arabian Nights. Understandably, surely? But though a lot of the basic set up was the same, this story really was about magic, power and demons rather than stories. Which I was a bit disappointed by – I’ve yet to read Arabian Nights (SO I COULD BE WRONG ABOUT THIS WHOLE THING) but have always been fascinated by the idea of stories so compelling that they save Scheherazade’s life night after night. That disappointment aside, the story was pretty decent and kept me reading!