Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Book review: By These Ten Bones by Clare B. Dunkle

By These Ten Bones by Clare B. Dunkle (Published by Square Fish, February 15, 2011)

Maddie lives in a small town in the Scottish Highlands during the Middle Ages. It is very rare for strangers to visit the town; a couple of times a year, traveling merchants might come by with their wares. One such group of travelers includes a mysterious young man who is extremely talented at woodcarving. Maddie is immediately drawn to the stranger, and he to her. But then strange things begin to happen in the village. The young carver is attacked, and Maddie thinks she saw and heard the monster who did it. Living in a time when most people were superstitious, she readily accepts that some evil creature is responsible.

As the young man recovers in her home, he and Maddie become close. She is the only one he will really talk to. She learns his name is Paul, and she also learns the dark secret he carries. Realizing that she has fallen in love with Paul, Maddie must decide how much she is willing to giving up in order to help him without putting her town and everyone else she loves at risk.

By These Ten Bones is a very original novel compared to most werewolf romances. It was set in Medieval times when most people were still superstitious and believed in the supernatural and the forces of evil. For that reason I thought that the plot and characters were a lot more believable than in most paranormal romances that are set in modern times. This book is written more like a folk tale, and so there isn't as much character development, but the setting really came alive, it was quite spooky at times! The descriptions of the Scottish Highlands were very detailed and I was not surprised to find out the author visited there before writing this book. If you are looking for something to read that is different from the usual young adult paranormal romance, I would recommend this book.

Disclosure: Review copy provided by publisher.

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