The Bone Season
Author: Samantha Shannon
Published: Bloomsbury, August 2013
A major event- the first book in a seven-part series of dizzying imagination. Welcome to Scion: no safer place.
The year is 2059. Nineteen- year –old Paige Mahoney is working in the criminal underworld of Scion London, based at seven dials, employed by a man named Jaxon Hall. Her job: to scout for information by breaking into people’s minds. For Paige is a dreamwalker, a clairvoyant and, in the world of Scion, she commits treason simply by breathing.
It is raining the day her life changes forever. Attacked, drugged and kidnapped, Paige is transported to Oxford- a city kept secret for two hundred years, controlled by a powerful otherworldly race. Paige is assigned to Warden, a Rephaite with mysterious motives. He is her master. Her trainer. Her natural enemy. But if Paige wants to regain her freedom she must allow herself to be nurtured in this prison where she is meant to die.
This novel has attracted a lot of hype and I can assure you none of it has been misplaced. I can’t wait for the movie that is practically guaranteed (the film rights have been optioned by the Imaginarium Studios.) It’s very easy to see why this novel is so sought after and applauded. Samantha Shannon is an extraordinary young writer and this novel, her debut, is simply stunning. It is an unbelievably self-assured novel, beautifully and eloquently written. I was engrossed, in fact I read the entire novel in one sitting it was far too satisfying to put down. The fact that there are still six novels to go fills me with great joy, I want to delve deeper and deeper into her beautifully crafted world. I cannot wait to see where her other novels take me.
The novel’s strength really does lie in the world building; London 2059 under Scion rule is a place that gripped me with awe, fear and a sense of wonder over Shannon’s incredible imagination. The explanations of the various levels and types of clairvoyance and Paige’s abilities as a dreamwalker include charts and diagrams which help the reader adjust to the hierarchy of this world. This novel has a level of depth to rival even the Lord of the Rings.
Paige is a very likeable character; I was rooting for her throughout the whole novel. She is the perfect heroine neither badass nor weak, leaving her with room for growth and progression. She is smart but not beyond careless mistakes which give her a realistic human element and makes her relatable for the reader. I also admired the characterisation of Warden and the constantly changing and evolving dynamics of the relationship between them.
This is beyond a doubt the best book I have read this year and the start of a series that I’m positive will be a favourite of mine for years.
Five out of five nerds
Check out our interview with Gollum himself, Andy Serkis, who’s production company are making the Bone Season movie here