Book Reviews, YA book reviews

The Bone Charmer by Breeana Shields


My Rating ~ Five stars


RELEASE DATE:  21 May 2019

Publisher: Page Street Publishing

Format: Hardcover

Pages: 391



In Saskia’s world, bones are the source of all power. They tell the future, reveal the past, and expose secrets in the present. Each village has a designated seer who performs readings for the townsfolk, and in Midwood, the Bone Charmer is Saskia’s mother.

On the day of her kenning—a special bone reading that determines the apprenticeships of all seventeen-year-olds—Saskia’s worst fears come true. She receives an assignment to train as a Bone Charmer, like her mother, and even worse, a match-making reading that pairs her with Bram—a boy who has suspicious tattoos that hint of violence.

Saskia knows her mother saw multiple paths for her, yet chose one she knew Saskia wouldn’t want. Their argument leads to a fracture in one of the bones. Broken bones are always bad luck, but this particular set of bones have been infused with extra magic, and so the break has devastating consequences—Saskia’s future has split as well. Now she will live her two potential paths simultaneously. Only one future can survive. And Saskia’s life is in danger in both.





When Saskia’s bone reading, which will determine her future career path and future love match, goes wrong, her future is split into two paths.  On one path, Saskia will go on to train as a bone charmer and be matched with a boy she fears has a violent past, and on the other she’ll train as a tutor and be matched with the boy she already wants to be with.

As we follow Saskia’s parallel paths, she realises she’s in danger in both of them, and only one path can continue in the end – but which will it be?

I absolutely loved this book.  The whole ‘Sliding Doors’ theme was fantastic and I found myself not wanting to put it down until I’d finished!  It was full of intrigue and betrayal and to be honest, I was hooked from the first sentence.  The magic system was interesting, not too complicated and well described, which kept the book moving along at a good pace.  Sometimes I feel like authors either gloss over how particular magical abilities work, or go the other way and overcomplicate it. The Bone Charmer got it just right for me.

Saskia (in both timelines) was a wonderful and flawed character and I appreciated a deviation away from ‘ordinary girl suddenly becomes all powerful and saves the world’.  I also really loved Bram and enjoyed piecing his history, and the meaning of his tattoos, together.

I was completely captivated by this book, and although I’m not sure whether there will be a sequel, I really hope there is!





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