Published: December 4, 2018
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Series: Chronicles of the One #2
Pages: 453 (Hardcover)
My Rating: 4.5/5.0
They look like an everyday family living an ordinary life. But beyond the edges of this peaceful farm, unimaginable forces of light and dark have been unleashed.
Fallon Swift, approaching her thirteenth birthday, barely knows the world that existed before—the city where her parents lived, now in ruins and reclaimed by nature since the Doom sickened and killed billions. Traveling anywhere is a danger, as vicious gangs of Raiders and fanatics called Purity Warriors search for their next victim. Those like Fallon, in possession of gifts, are hunted—and the time is coming when her true nature, her identity as The One, can no longer be hidden.
In a mysterious shelter in the forest, her training is about to begin under the guidance of Mallick, whose skills have been honed over centuries. She will learn the old ways of healing; study and spar; encounter faeries and elves and shifters; and find powers within herself she never imagined. And when the time is right, she will take up the sword, and fight. For until she grows into the woman she was born to be, the world outside will never be whole again.
It’s been thirteen years since the events of Year One and now Fallon Swift is about to begin her training so she may take up arms against the Dark. Of Blood and Bone is like the classic coming of age, young hero trains with a wise old man tale and I LOVED IT. It’s like epic fantasy set in a modern post-apocalyptic society and the adults remember days with smartphones and Netflix but the kids growing up are learning how to wield a sword. It’s so legit. I can’t believe how much this book blew me away. Sure, it had some moments where I thought it was a bit corny but they were mostly forgettable.
So of course the story begins at the Swift family farm with Lana, Simon, Fallon, and her three brothers. She struggles with the fact that in a few short weeks she’ll be leaving her family for a two years and I think the time spent here really helps the reader to get to know Fallon. It introduces both her and the world thirteen years post apocalypse. Fallon goes off with Mallick to train and most of the book is spent with Fallon training with magic, weapons, and other skills like tactics, healing, and even farming. I surprisingly never got bored with this because there was always kind of a new quest for Fallon to complete. This portion also introduced some new characters like Fallon’s elf friend.
In parallel to Fallon’s chapters, there are chapters from the POV of those from New Hope, the town that Lana fled from so many years prior after Max was murdered in an attack. You may recall Katie’s twins from the first book… well, Duncan and Tonia are a feisty pair of teenagers who wield weapons and magic with equal talent. New Hope thrives and it was so lovely to see children grown up and see how the characters from Year One had changed.
Of Blood and Bone was excellent and though it lacked the sense of urgent horror that the first book had, the new vibe was exactly right. This was the start of new chapter and as such, the story had much the same feel as if it were the first book in a series. Somewhat introductory if you will, and I’ve often said that first books are my favorite. If you enjoyed the first book I don’t know how you could resist picking this up! I would definitely recommend the audiobook version as well because I think the narration adds so much more emotion and life to the story.