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Bone Quill (Hollow Earth) Hardcover – 9 Jul 2013


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Aladdin Paperbacks (9 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1442489286
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442489288
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.5 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (103 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,205,664 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Fast paced - exciting - full of twists and turns - excellent characterisation - compelling storyline - what more can you ask? (Parents in Touch) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

John Barrowman was born in Glasgow and moved to the U.S. with his family when he was eight. He is well known for his roles on stage and television. His sister Carole is a Professor of English and Director of Creative Studies in Writing in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, has regular US newspaper columns and has written two hugely successful books about her brother John's life. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Grey Lady on 21 Jan. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I admit it: after reading Bone Quill, I read Hollow Earth all over again just to remain close to the characters. It's an exciting new adventure for the Calder twins, despite being an independant adventure - or actually half an adventure - which can be read without foreknowledge. That won't apply to the third installment which will hopefully come soon. Because you just want to know what happens next, not just to the twins themselves but also to many other characters. Although Solon from the Middle Ages wasn't so interesting in the first book, you surely want to know more about him now, especially since he's now got a companion to work with too.

Surprisingly, and I already noticed that in the first book, it is the boy twin who hits into puberty first while generally this happens to girls first. Obviously that is necessary for the story as girls don't fight the way boys do when they disagree or distrust someone else of their own age (and among boys that is a more regular feature of behaviour - they generally make up more easily too) while this particular fight was a great way of getting the two boys - one from the 21st and the other from the 13th century, to start working together.

The only negative point I have, is the fact that the father is a bit too simple in character. He is just a megalomaniac who furthermore manages to incite a rebellion in an monastery in 4 (!) days time while being a complete stranger to them. Of course, he is a strong guardian en well able to "inspirit" many monks, but it still seemned a bit unlikely.
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Format: Paperback
Last week I reviewed the first book in the Hollow Earth series, which I really enjoyed. The second book, Bone Quill, was just as big a treat as the first book was, perhaps even more so as some of the elements I enjoyed in the first book had a larger role in this book and we got to see more of the adults and their history. As this is book two in a series and this book starts where the previous book leaves off and deals with the fall out of that earlier book, it is impossible to discuss Bone Quill without giving spoilers for Hollow Earth. If you want to remain unspoiled it would be wisest to not read any further.

The biggest new element in the story is Em and Matt's discovery that they cannot just animate themselves into a painting, they can actually time travel using the paintings. This is quite a cool application of Animare powers I'd never had thought of in the last book. Imagine all the possibilities of such an ability! Of course, Em, Matt, and Zach do and they have quite the adventure. Bored out of their minds after having been confined to the Abbey grounds after the events in the last books, Matt decides to animate himself into a painting of Victorian London to alleviate his boredom, something expressly forbidden by his grandfather and Simon. I loved the short adventure the kids had in the Victorian age, which focused on the awful living conditions of the poor and on the dangers of Victorian society for a deaf boy, but I did have some trouble with Matt's all but black-mailing Em and Zach into accompanying him. It's something he does repeatedly and mostly without any lasting repercussions and I just wish Em and Zach would just stand up to him for once as he can be a bit of a bully.
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Format: Paperback
I confess that I only bought the first book in this series to fuel my John Barrowman obsession and didn't really have very high expectations of it. Then I read it and loved every second and desperately wanted book two already.

Luckily for me, Liberty recieved Bone Quill for review (having borrowed my copy of Hollow Earth and loving it, too) so I didn't have to wait long before I could borrow it.

I raced through Bone Quill because it was fast-paced and gripping, the story carying on from where it left off at an unrelenting speed.

There was the all the previous excitement of the Animare with added time-travel and the complications that brings to any story.

The two storylines of past and present, previously not directly connected, suddenly become intertwined and the peril notches up several levels. Matt and Emily suddenly find themselves having to choose between their family and the world - a choice no 12 year olds should have to make - and they hit all of the obstacles you would expect, plus a couple of extras (such as flaming Hellhounds).

The world of the Hollow Earth series is beautifully crafted, rich and well-thought out and so carefully described that it is very easy to lose yourself in it and really feel like you are there with the characters. Everything is covered, not just the sights but the smells and sensations - the world-building is one of my favourite things about this series because it is so thorough.

If you liked Hollow Earth then you will love Bone Quill, no second book syndrome here!

My Rating: 5/5*
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