The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

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In 2059, Scion has taken over most of the world’s cities, promising safety for all the citizens it deems worthy and wiping out clairvoyants wherever it can find them.

Paige Mahoney, though, is a clairvoyant–and a criminal just for existing. Paige is determined to fight Scion’s power, and as part of the Seven Seals, Paige has found a use for her powers: she scouts for information by breaking into others’ minds as they dream.

But when Paige is captured and arrested, she encounters a power more sinister even than Scion. The voyant prison is a separate city, controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. These creatures, the Rephaim, value the voyants highly-as soldiers in their army.

Paige is assigned to a Rephaite keeper, Warden, who will be in charge of her care and training. He is her master. Her natural enemy. But if she wants to regain her freedom, Paige will have to learn something of his mind and his own mysterious motives.

The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine-a young woman learning to harness her powers in a world where everything has been taken from her. It 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.

This was probably a good introduction to Samantha Shannon. If the rest of the books she’s written are anything like this she will likely be a new favorite author. As this is the first book I’ve read by her though, I’m reserving judgement.

I was engaged in this story pretty much from page 1. I loved the plot, characters, and setting. Not that the setting is any place I would want to live, but I felt it was something a bit new, and different from what I’ve read previously.

The story is set in a world with normal people, and those with special abilities, like Paige who is a clairvoyant. Not just any clairvoyant, but one of the strongest if not the strongest. There is a catch to her using her ability though; she stops breathing. This is where working for the criminal underground comes in handy. Jaxon, the man she works for and leader of a syndicate, has provided a machine to keep her breathing while she uses her ability for him. He also works to keep her and the others working for him safe from the government who is trying to kill them, or so they think.

There is a sense of secrecy and almost like a spy game that happens once Paige is kidnapped. She gets ideas her owner knows things about her, but isn’t sure what exactly he knows, and if he can be trusted. Paige also pushes the limits, and gets into some tight spots. I can’t say much about a certain friendship that occurs in the story due to spoilers. I will say, I have some hopes for this friendship in the next book.

I greatly enjoyed the way things played out in the end, and look forward to picking up The Mime Order.