The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones
The Bone Houses is such an enjoyable, original, and fast-paced read! I’m really glad that OwlCrate included this book in the September 2019 box (just look at the cover 😍)!
About the Book
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers | Release Date: September 24, 2019
Pages: 338 | Genre: YA, Horror | Format: Hardcover | Source: Purchased
The risen corpses are known as “bone houses,” and legend says that they’re the result of a decades-old curse. When Ellis, an apprentice mapmaker with a mysterious past, arrives in town, the bone houses attack with new ferocity. What is it that draws them near? And more importantly, how can they be stopped for good?
Together, Ellis and Ryn embark on a journey that will take them deep into the heart of the mountains, where they will have to face both the curse and the long-hidden truths about themselves.
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My Review of The Bone Houses
It’s a weird feeling writing a full review six months after reading a book, but trust me when I say that The Bone Houses is a memorable read that’s stuck with me long after finishing it. It is truly a crime that more people aren’t talking about this fantasy horror with a soft relationship and truly touching sibling relationships!
“The forest did not scare her; rather, she wanted to be like it: ageless and impervious, cruel and beautiful. Death could not touch it.”
The descriptions and atmosphere are fantastic. I was immediately drawn into the world that Lloyd-Jones carefully crafted. The words flow easily and beautifully, gloriously toeing the line of purple prose without bogging down the narrative. The feeling of unease and tension build, leading to a completely wild and intense last quarter of the book that had me on the edge of my seat. I had to put my book down for a minute to recover!
“Our lives depend on people dying. And old people tend to die more quickly than young ones. But they won’t be paying for your services, not so long as they think the dead will rise.”
I did struggle a bit with the worldbuilding, particularly surrounding the king, magic’s presence or lack thereof, the overall mystery of the bone houses and where they came from. A lot of it comes together in the end, but there are some things I just had to suspend my disbelief for and not poke with logic. The book has excellent pacing and there’s never a dull moment. Even though I wasn’t completely sold on the worldbuilding, it didn’t detract much from my enjoyment of the book because of how I was invested I became with the characters.
“She knew how things died. And in her darkest moments, she feared she did not know how to live.”
The characters most definitely shine in this book. I will die for the goat and I absolutely love Ryn. She will do anything for her family, making great sacrifices to make sure her brother and sister have a good life; and the beauty is in the character relationships. This book made me cry. The sibling relationships are precious and we must protect Ceri at all costs; I love her snark!
“Pain doesn’t make a person weak or strong. Pain just is. It’s not a purifier, it’s a part of living.”
The book is as much about grief, love, and family as much as the horrific bone houses (basically zombies). The theme of loss and pain runs throughout the story and is a journey of acceptance which I found incredibly moving.Are you looking for a unique and atmospheric fantasy/horror read with lovable characters and amazing character relationships? How about a goat as a faithful companion? You should check out The Bone Houses! Click To Tweet
Overall, The Bone Houses was such an enjoyable, original, and fast-paced read! I’m really glad that OwlCrate included this book in the September 2019 box (and look at the cover! 😍😍😍)! This is a book I would highly recommend to people who enjoy fairytale style stories with the vibes of the Brothers Grimm to it.
Content warning: animal death, bullying, classism
Have you read The Bone Houses yet? If so, what did you think?!
If you had a faithful companion during an essential zombie apocalypse, what animal would you want on your team?
Let’s go on another adventure together!