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Bone Gap Paperback – April 26, 2016
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From School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up—It is a rare book that sits comfortably on the shelf with the works of Twain, McCullers, Conroy, Stephen King, and D'Aulaires' Greek Myths-rarer still that a novel combines elements of these authors together. Bone Gap does just this, to superb effect. We start with a boy named Finn and his brother, Sean. Sean is the classic hero: strong, silent, great at everything he does. Finn is a pretty boy whose otherworldly goofiness has earned him the nicknames Spaceman, Sidetrack, and Moonface. Along comes Rosza, a beautiful and damaged young woman, fleeing from some unknown evil. When she disappears, only Finn witnesses her abduction and he is unable to describe her captor. He is also unsure whether she left by force or choice. The author defies readers' expectations at every turn. In this world, the evidence of one's senses counts for little; appearances, even less. Heroism isn't born of muscle, competence, and desire, but of the ability to look beyond the surface and embrace otherworldliness and kindred spirits. Sex happens, but almost incidentally. Evil happens, embodied in a timeless, nameless horror that survives on the mere idea of beauty. A powerful novel.—Nina Sachs, Walker Memorial Library, Westbrook, ME --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
“It’s a novel about actual changes in worldview, and all its science and myth and realism and magic are marshaled, finally, to answer crucial questions about empathy and difference, and the way we see people we love.” (New York Times Book Review)
“BONE GAP marks Laura Ruby as one of fiction’s most original voices. She is capable of moving you to tears, terrifying you on deep and dreamlike levels, and making your heart shout with happiness. This book is magic realism at its most magical.” (E. Lockhart, author of WE WERE LIARS)
“Ruby’s novel deserves to be read and reread. It is powerful, beautiful, extraordinary.” (SLJ)
“With rich characters, captivating world building, and a stunning secret at its heart, BONE GAP is utterly bewitching.” (ALA Booklist (starred review))
“Cleverly conceived, and lusciously written.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“The real magic in Bone Gap is the discovery of love, an idea many stories misrepresent but Bone Gap explores with the utmost honesty and truth.” (Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) (starred review))
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Roza is a foreign exchange student from Poland who finds herself the object of a cruel man’s world, the object of the dark man’s affection. He can give her anything she wants, a castle with servants and beautiful clothes, her own personal chef – just love him, just love him. But she does not, she loves Sean and longs for his rescue. She longs to go home to her “babcia”, her grandma in Poland.
In the meantime, Finn finds summer love and someone who finally believes in him. Priscilla, (don’t call me that!), “Petey” Willis lived with her mom and the bees. They made the sweet honey cakes for the café, and Petey made sweet honey kisses in the light of the moon. Finn snuck away every night on the black mare (which appeared in the barn just as suddenly as Roza did) and the two rode in between the worlds and back again.
Then Finn saw that man again, only this time he was across the street at old man Valentine’s house. That dark man knew everything, he knew about Petey and Sean, and where was Roza? What did Valentine know? He knew enough to confirm to Finn that he was the only one who could go after her, he was the only one who could “see” her. No one in the town believed him, not even Sean. He was too blinded by his pain, his anger at having been left by everyone he loved. Finn had to do it, he had to save Roza.
He left that night in search of the gap, the place where the two worlds collide, where the corn whispers “here, here, here.” The mare couldn’t take him, he had to do this alone. How will he ever find Roza? Will he find his way home again, or be lost to the other world forever?
I know how it ends, but I would not want to ruin it for you. You will have to read it yourself, and I would recommend you read it. This book was full of surprises, although it took until the second chapter of the first section before I got into the “flow” of the way the book was going to go. It jumps back and forth between characters, which is good for a young audience with a short attention span. Two things I really liked about this book. First of all, it was not a typical, scripted, predictable, cliché fantasy teen romance. Secondly, it was full of little metaphors within the writing which gave the story a deeper, twofold meaning – just like the two worlds presented in the story. For example, “least, that’s what it looked like. A roped-off room in a castle somewhere, a room made entirely of blocks of stone, icy and cold, even though a fire burned low in the hearth. A room where doomed queens went to die” (Ruby, 2015).
This book is a great read for teens and adults!
Most recent customer reviews
Overall I really enjoyed this book. It was an interesting choice, definitely not something one sees often on the shelves.Read more
Well... I liked BONE GAP, but after having read other YA magical realism novels that blew me away, this one didn't hold the same...Read more
What an treat to find this special little gem!
Set in a small town in Illinois it has all the charm and mystery of...Read more