Hello everyone and welcome to my stop on blog tour for Bones of Ruin by Sarah Raughley. I am so excited to review this ownvoices, richly developed story in the vain of books like Caraval and The Night Circus
About the BookThe Bones of Ruin by Sarah Raughley
Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books on September 7, 2021
An African tightrope walker who can’t die gets embroiled in a secret society’s deadly gladiatorial tournament in this thrilling historical fantasy set in an alternate 1880s London, perfect for fans of The Last Magician and The Gilded Wolves.
As an African tightrope dancer in Victorian London, Iris is used to being strange. She is certainly a strange sight for leering British audiences always eager for the spectacle of colonial curiosity. But Iris also has a secret that even “strange” doesn’t capture…
She cannot die.
Haunted by her unnatural power and with no memories of her past, Iris is obsessed with discovering who she is. But that mission gets more complicated when she meets the dark and alluring Adam Temple, a member of a mysterious order called the Enlightenment Committee. Adam seems to know much more about her than he lets on, and he shares with her a terrifying revelation: the world is ending, and the Committee will decide who lives…and who doesn’t.
To help them choose a leader for the upcoming apocalypse, the Committee is holding the Tournament of Freaks, a macabre competition made up of vicious fighters with fantastical abilities. Adam wants Iris to be his champion, and in return he promises her the one thing she wants most: the truth about who she really is.
If Iris wants to learn about her shadowy past, she has no choice but to fight. But the further she gets in the grisly tournament, the more she begins to remember—and the more she wonders if the truth is something best left forgotten.
About the Author
Sarah Raughley grew up in Southern Ontario writing stories about freakish little girls with powers because she secretly wanted to be one. She is a huge fangirl of anything from manga to SF/F TV to Japanese Role Playing Games, but she will swear up and down that she was inspired by ~Jane Austin~ at book signings. On top of being a YA Writer, she is currently completing a PhD in English, because the sight of blood makes her queasy (which crossed Medical School off the list).
She is represented by The Bradford Literary Agency
So far, you can also find her on Twitter, where work ethic goes to die.
A YA historical fantasy novel featuring an African tightrope walker who cannot die, even when she is injured fatally. Bones of Ruin kicks off an exciting new trilogy that promises plenty of action, adventure and mystery. Set in an alternate history, almost steampunk-like London.
Iris remembers very little about her past. In fact, she can recall nothing before she joined the small circus where she works as a tightrope walker. Keeping her secret of immortality even from those she calls her friends, her life is thrown into chaos when a man by the name of Adam Temple finds her and, through a series of events, her secret is revealed.
Adam is part of a secret society that is the real authority of the country and is hosting a tournament to help determine a leader for the imminent apocalypse. It’s a tournament to the death and Adam wants Iris to be one of his champions. In exchange, Adam will help her remember who she truly is.
There is so much to unpack about this one. Clocking in at nearly 500 pages, it’s a slow building, intricately plotted story with strong character development and a mystery at it’s center.
But there is a lot more to the novel than just a war over who will lead the end of the world. It’s a story about belonging and found family. It tackles important issues of racism and colonialism. It’s a important book and a fantastic addition to YA fantasy as a genre it’s hard to believe it’s a debut!
Overall I gave this one 4? if only for the inconsistent pace in some places. I would recommend it for people who enjoy longer novels and adored books like The Night Circus and Caraval.
Up for grabs will be TWO (1) finished copies of The Bones of Ruin by Sarah Raughley. This giveaway will be open to U.S. residents only and will run from August 29th to September 13th at 11:59 PM CST. Two winners will be chosen. To enter, click the link below!
What About You?
Have you read The Bones of Ruin? What did you think of it? Will you be adding it to your TBR? Let me know in the comments!