Reading The Bone House reminded me why I love the writings of Stephen Lawhead. He always makes me believe that the fantastic is possible. Reading this book made me want to research ley lines and go out and find one, just to see if anything would happen.
While The Skin Map seemed to spend a lot of time setting up the story, The Bone House does a great job of moving the story forward as the characters continue the search for the skin map. Although the story skips around between different characters who are in different time periods and on different worlds, the action is easy to follow, and each chapter is a piece of a puzzle that is coming together to create a complete picture.
The characters we met in The Skin Map continue to grow and learn, and new characters join the ranks of those searching for the treasure that Arthur Flinders-Petrie found. We find out early on in the story what exactly that treasure is, and in the final pages, Kit also gets a glimpse of the place everyone is searching for. With time-travel and multiple universes, with Archelaeus Buleigh and his men continuing to hunt down the other ley travelers, there are both endless dangers and endless possibilities for the characters.
While there is the feeling that anything at all can happen, a big theme throughout the story is the idea of Providence, that nothing happens by chance. While the story of the skin map is pieced together, so too is the bigger picture of a divine Being who is infinitely interested in every person and guides their smallest steps. In a story where there are an infinite number of choices to be made and an infinite number of ways things can go wrong, the idea that nothing is left to chance is a powerful one.
With a strong message, rising action, and ever-developing characters, The Bone House will keep your attention from beginning to end and foster the mindset the our world is a bigger and stranger place than could ever be imagined.
(In conjunction with the CSFF Blog Tour, I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.)
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