Saturday, 2 April 2016

The Map of Bones

The Map of Bones is the sequel to The Fire Sermon and therefore this review may contain spoilers for the previous book.

Cass’s visions of the blast are getting more frequent, straining her mentally. She sees her future in Xander who has been driven mad by the visions all seers share. But there is no time to lose if she must stop the council’s plans, those that would see the end of the Omega problem as far as Alpha’s see it but would condemn their twins to an existence without living.

At the end of The Fire Sermon, Cass discovers Kip’s true identity and as well as being spared by her twin, leaving her with a whole host of unresolved feelings whirling round her head. Zoe has little patience for her suffering or woe-be-me attitude and spends most of her time teaching her to fight, at least so the symbol of the resistance doesn’t get killed before she can bring about change.

The Map of Bones is another slow paced journey across the post-apocalyptic landscape. I know a few people weren’t a huge fan of the length of time wandering in The Fire Sermon but I do think it’s a reflection of the post-blast life. Without cars and planes, travelling just takes longer and the time that passes getting from one place to another gives Cass time for reflection. It’s a rather introspective trilogy, and that’s just not going to be to everyone’s taste.

This instalment reveals a little bit more about the blast and some of the world that lived before. Cass hasn’t given up on the idea of Elsewhere and she learns where that hope came from, the seed of something else that turns into legend.

Watching Piper and Zoe, I couldn't forget that even their games were made of blades.

It’s an interesting concept, a civil war where the destruction of one side means the destruction of both. The link between twins was explored more in the first book but it still hangs over every action. When they kill an enemy, they also kill an innocent. The lines between Alphas and Omegas also start to blur, not everyone has the same agenda. Maybe being born into one side doesn’t have to define your actions after all…

Middle books are often tricky and it doesn’t come with a whole lot of resolution. It does raise some more intriguing points about their world, what came before and what could come again. I feel it lends a little more hope to the story at least, and I will definitely be eagerly awaiting the final instalment.

The Map of Bones is published by Harper Voyager and will be available in hardback and ebook editions from the 7th April 2016. Thanks go to the publisher for providing a copy for review and check back next week for a Q+A with Francesca Haig.

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Disclosure: I received a copy of this book free of charge for review purposes only. Receipt of a book does not guarantee a review or endorsement. My reviews are my honest opinion and are not biased for the purpose of personal gain.

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