Thursday, February 26, 2015

Audiobook Review: The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

The Bone Season (The Bone Season #1) 
Author: Samantha Shannon
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA 
Publication Date: August 20, 2013

Narrator: Alana Kerr
Listening Length: 14 hours and 57 minutes
Audiobook Publisher: Audible Studios for Bloomsbury

From Goodreads:
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 for ever. 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.

The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine and 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.

Sometimes the narrator makes all the difference in the world and Alana Kerr is the perfect narrator for this book. The voice of Paige has just enough of an Irish accent to remember where she's from but not so much that you're distracted by it.  Warden's voice holds just enough detachment and concern that I was never sure if he was helping Paige or following orders. 

It's truly hard to believe that this is Samantha Shannon's first book and that she wrote it so early in her life.  The world she has created is unique and has so many layers that I can't wait to read to future books.  I also loved all of the secondary characters that are introduced from her gang in London, her life in Ireland, and her friends and enemies in Sheol 1.  Shannon did a great job using the gifts of the other clairvoyants as a way to reveal more about the larger society and as an opportunity to learn more about Paige.  My only complaint about the book was the end, which seemed very abrupt and unexpected. 

As a sociologist I found myself thinking about all the ways I could use this book in the classroom.  The most obvious discussion would focus on how societies define "deviance" and what they do with "deviants."  Another theme would focus on social unrest and social protest and identifying what factors push individuals to protest versus accept their situations.  Finally, there would be several opportunities to discuss gender exploitation and the men Paige relies upon who simultaneously care for her and take advantage of her. It's probably been awhile since most of you read this book but if you can think of other themes I should discuss please share your ideas.

Now I can't wait to listen to The Mime Order.

Posted by:  Sheri


  1. Long, detailed audiobooks are always a certain challenge to me and I do better with some than others. I struggled to fully grasp this world and I want to give it a re-read before I listen to the Mime Order. But I did like it and am excited to continue in the series. I can't believe it is going to be 7 books though!!

  2. 7 books does seem a bit unnecessary to me but it must because we get to learn more about the other colonies and the back story to the Rephaite.

  3. I've been debating reading this one. Mainly because of the 7 book aspect. I might wait until at least the first few are out before I start the series--and the audio might be the way to go. I'm glad you enjoyed it!