The Bone Season

In the dystopian England of 2059, the population has splintered into those with clairvoyant powers and those without, with "voyants" ruthlessly hunted and exterminated by the normals in power. Voyants who escape detection, like Paige Mahoney, are forced to earn their keep as members of violent crime syndicates or face capture and euthanasia. Samantha Shannon's The Bone Season (the first in an ambitious series of seven novels) follows 19-year-old Paige as she struggles against an oppressive system for survival and freedom.

The Bone Season has already garnered Shannon comparisons to J.K. Rowling and Suzanne Collins, among others. In many ways, the novel lives up to the hype. While the premise of a dystopian society that exploits supernatural powers is certainly not a new one, Shannon peppers her story with unexpected plot twists (including a major one very early in). As a narrator, Paige is entertaining and accessible; her sardonic observations often evoke an almost noir sensibility.

A forewarning: though The Bone Season will certainly win over fans of supernatural YA fiction, light science fiction and romance, it may not appeal to all. The plot, while engaging, sometimes beggars the belief of the jaded reader, and Paige's voice can wear thin as the novel progresses. However, the denouement hints at interesting developments throughout the rest of the series--if this debut is any indication of things to come, Shannon will certainly be an author to watch. --Katie Montgomery, book nerd

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