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<span id="freeTextContainer14761527638036382938">Everyone knows Bone Gap is full of gaps—gaps to trip you up, gaps to slide through so you can disappear forever. So when young, beautiful Roza went missing, the people of Bone Gap weren&rsquo;t surprised. After all, it wasn&rsquo;t the first time that someone had slipped away and left Finn and Sean O&rsquo;Sullivan on their own. Just a few years before, their mother had high-tailed it to Or</span>
<span id="freeText14761527638036382938" style="display:none">Everyone knows Bone Gap is full of gaps—gaps to trip you up, gaps to slide through so you can disappear forever. So when young, beautiful Roza went missing, the people of Bone Gap weren&rsquo;t surprised. After all, it wasn&rsquo;t the first time that someone had slipped away and left Finn and Sean O&rsquo;Sullivan on their own. Just a few years before, their mother had high-tailed it to Oregon for a brand new guy, a brand new life. That&rsquo;s just how things go, the people said. Who are you going to blame?<br /><br />Finn knows that&rsquo;s not what happened with Roza. He knows she was kidnapped, ripped from the cornfields by a dangerous man whose face he cannot remember. But the searches turned up nothing, and no one believes him anymore. Not even Sean, who has more reason to find Roza than anyone, and every reason to blame Finn for letting her go.<br /><br />As we follow the stories of Finn, Roza, and the people of Bone Gap—their melancholy pasts, their terrifying presents, their uncertain futures—acclaimed author Laura Ruby weaves a heartbreaking tale of love and loss, magic and mystery, regret and forgiveness—a story about how the face the world sees is never the sum of who we are.</span>
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<a class="reviewDate createdAt right" href="/review/show/1367909001?book_show_action=true">Aug 18, 2015</a>
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<span id="freeTextContainer1468871325372645519"><b>You can also find this review <a href="http://www.everywordadoorway.com/bone-gap-by-laura-ruby/#more-682" rel="nofollow">here</a>!</b><br /><br /><blockquote> <em>&ldquo;People look, they don't see.&rdquo;</em> </blockquote><br />Just thinking about this incredible book I finished a few days ago brings back all the emotions I felt while reading. <em>Bone Gap</em> is honestly a masterpiece and I don&rsquo;t say that lightly. It is however, also a very difficult book to review.<br /><br />What kind of book is <em>Bone Gap</em>? The answer is: I don&rsquo;t know. It's not really magical realism or fantasy, not contemporary, not a thriller or mystery. I have no idea how I would categorize it. <strong>It is b</strong></span>
<span id="freeText1468871325372645519" style="display:none"><b>You can also find this review <a href="http://www.everywordadoorway.com/bone-gap-by-laura-ruby/#more-682" rel="nofollow">here</a>!</b><br /><br /><blockquote>
<em>&ldquo;People look, they don't see.&rdquo;</em>
</blockquote><br />Just thinking about this incredible book I finished a few days ago brings back all the emotions I felt while reading. <em>Bone Gap</em> is honestly a masterpiece and I don&rsquo;t say that lightly. It is however, also a very difficult book to review.<br /><br />What kind of book is <em>Bone Gap</em>? The answer is: I don&rsquo;t know. It's not really magical realism or fantasy, not contemporary, not a thriller or mystery. I have no idea how I would categorize it. <strong>It is book that is totally different from anything I&rsquo;ve read; it bends genre conventions and throws tropes and clichés out the window.</strong><br /><br />The novel reads a lot like a fairy tale and yet I didn&rsquo;t feel any of the detachment I usually do with these kinds of stories. <strong>The book is so compelling and poignant that I couldn&rsquo;t help but be completely invested.</strong> It&rsquo;s about a lot more than just the plot. <strong>Without a doubt, <em>Bone Gap</em> is a character and theme driven story.</strong><br /><br />The story follows two brothers, Sean and Finn O&rsquo;Sullivan, who live together with a beautiful girl, Roza, in a strange little town called Bone Gap until, one day, Roza mysteriously disappears and the entire town believes it was with her consent. Only Finn knows the truth: Roza didn&rsquo;t leave, she was kidnapped. Kidnapped by a man whose face Finn cannot remember. And nobody in Bone Gap believes him, not even his own brother.<br /><br />Told through alternating POV&rsquo;s of Finn and Roza, as well as some of the other inhabitants of Bone Gap, the story slowly unfurls in front of the reader. Occasional flashbacks give the book an unexpected depth. <strong>Laura Ruby weaves in fairy tale and mythological elements and the result is a novel that is both a mythological retelling and something else entirely. </strong>The references are very subtle; nothing in this book is overt.<br /><br /><strong>The characters are phenomenal.</strong> I loved every single one; they were all well-drawn and complex, lovable in their own ways.<br /><br />We have <strong>Finn</strong>, eighteen and the prettiest boy in town. Yet, people don&rsquo;t know what to make of him. They find him strange. They call him names – Sidetrack, Spaceman, Moonface – because he doesn&rsquo;t look people in the eye.<br /><blockquote>
<em>&ldquo;What have you got against people?"<br />Finn hated crowds. Thousands of people bumping and churning. "Too many opinions.&rdquo;</em>
</blockquote><br />Everyone believes Finn is in love with Roza, when in reality he loves Petey. But of course, nobody in Bone Gap can believe that because Petey is considered ugly. <strong>What would such a pretty boy want with such an ugly girl?</strong> Surely he only pities her. Petey believes that too.<br /><br /><strong>Roza&rsquo;s character</strong> could have easily been the victim of stereotyping and maybe, in the hands of a less talented author, she would have been. Instead, she turned out to be a wonderful character. Headstrong and independent, but also scarred. She is so beautiful that every person she meets comments on it, men all want a piece of her. They say they are in love with her without actually getting to know her. Roza hates it; she has long realized being beautiful is not who she is. She wants people to see beyond the surface but that seems impossible. <strong>Her character gives us a glimpse of the negative consequences beauty can bring and the author handled it brilliantly.</strong> Roza was never annoying or arrogant and she wasn&rsquo;t a damsel in distress that needed someone to come save her; she could take her of herself.<br /><blockquote>
<em>Abruptly, she let go of his wrists and allowed him to push her to her knees. She looked up, waited for his smile.</em>
<br /><br /><em>And then she punched him in the nuts.</em>
</blockquote><br />And then we have <strong>Petey</strong> who I could personally identify with the most. She isn&rsquo;t beautiful or even pretty and the people in town make that clear on every occasion they get. They say she looks like a giant bee; a bit of an inside joke seeing Petey is a beekeeper. She is so insecure that she can&rsquo;t believe that Finn could actually find her beautiful. It doesn&rsquo;t matter that she is smart, independent and competent; the people only see what is on the outside. Maybe worst of all is the fact that Petey used to like the way she looked when she was a little girl, but the harsh words of others have taken all her self-worth.<br /><br /><strong><em>Bone Gap</em> is a book about beauty, about perspective, about the way we view those around us and the way we see ourselves. The story is masterfully crafted and truly shows how our perception of things can impact others.</strong> Beauty is not depicted as the source of all evil; rather, the problem is how much value we put on beauty and how we treat people differently according to how much we believe they have. This book has so many layers that I could go on forever. But I&rsquo;d rather let you discover the rest on your own.<br /><br />Last but not least, this novel is also <strong>beautifully written</strong>. Some of the metaphors and similes used were perfection.<br /><blockquote>
<em>The twitch of her nerves was like the beating of a billion tiny wings, as if messages passed from his breath and his hands through her skin and back again, the way bees stroke one another&rsquo;s antennae, feeding one another by touch.</em>
</blockquote><br />If you are reader who always needs to know what is going on and doesn&rsquo;t like to be confused, then this book might not be for you. <strong>It is a strange novel that will make you question reality.</strong> Otherwise though, <strong>I recommend this book to absolutely everyone. It is unique, it is touching and it is empowering.</strong><br /></span>
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<a class="reviewDate createdAt right" href="/review/show/1218760037?book_show_action=true">Mar 04, 2015</a>
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<span id="freeTextContainer14722109399125060213"><b>REREAD UPDATE</b><br /><br />So basically this book is my <i>favourite</i> and I can't even describe all the feels it gives me. I just am so entranced by the magical realism, slightly odd dusty and cornfield filled town of Bone Gap with it's strange beautifulness. And the characters. THE CHARACTERS. I can't even say how much I love Finn. &lt;3 I relate to him so much ajfdksald and just the way the story twists and the whimsical tone…and ajfkdslad AFJSDKALFDJ.<br /><br />Woooooords fail. I love it too much. TOO MUCH.<br /><br />I also reall</span>
<span id="freeText14722109399125060213" style="display:none"><b>REREAD UPDATE</b><br /><br />So basically this book is my <i>favourite</i> and I can't even describe all the feels it gives me. I just am so entranced by the magical realism, slightly odd dusty and cornfield filled town of Bone Gap with it's strange beautifulness. And the characters. THE CHARACTERS. I can't even say how much I love Finn. &lt;3 I relate to him so much ajfdksald and just the way the story twists and the whimsical tone…and ajfkdslad AFJSDKALFDJ.<br /><br />Woooooords fail. I love it too much. TOO MUCH.<br /><br />I also really like how it's about <b>how you see people</b>. And how you can look at a person and not see them. Or you can never look someone in the eyes, but you really truly see them. About how seeing a person isn't just what they look like.<br /><br />YA. I GOT NO WORDS. THIS BOOK IS TOO BEAUTIFUL AND I LOVE FINN AN EXTRAORDINARY AMOUNT.<br /><br /><br /><b>
<u>ORIGINAL REVIEW: OCTOBER, 2015</u>
</b>:<br />oooooow DO I DO WORDS?!?!? All I want to say is <b>I have just read the most marvellous of book</b> and please…just drop everything and read it now and flail with me forever because THIS BOOK IS SO INCREDIBLY SUFFOCATINGLY GOOD. I'm having so much emotions right now I think my brain will explode. MY ENTIRE SELF WILL EXPLODE. I <i>love</i> this book. It reminded me of <a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1330292.Maggie_Stiefvater" title="Maggie Stiefvater" rel="nofollow">Maggie Stiefvater</a> and <a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9013537.Mo_ra_Fowley_Doyle" title="Moïra Fowley-Doyle" rel="nofollow">Moïra Fowley-Doyle</a> smushed together into this INCREDIBLE masterpiece. <br /><br />Excuse me. I HAVE FORGOTTEN HOW TO WORD.<br /><br />Okay, okay, <i>let me try to explain why I loved it so much.</i> And I shall use a list because lists are freaking fantastic.<br /><br />• It is written so suffocatingly gorgeously. SERIOUSLY. I NEED AIR. It's whimsical and beautiful and it uses the perfectest of words. It's like honey and corn and gardens and green and bones and gaps. I can't even explain it okay? IT'S JUST THAT BEAUTIFUL.<br /><br />• Then the characters melted my little soul into a puddle of intense honeyed feels. I LOVED THEM ALL SO MUCH. It's basically narrated by <b>Finn</b> but we get a lot of other perspectives too (all in 3rd person). And I adored it. It felt so natural and flowing. I <i>adored</i> the complexities. AGH. How do I even sum up all the characters?!? There's <b>Roza</b> who is kind of the catalyst of this book. SHE IS MISSING. And no one believes Finn when he says he saw her kidnapped. Then there's <b>Sean</b> who is Finn's older brother and who loves Roza. He's huge and kind yet hurt and ajfdksalfd Sean bless your little heart. And I couldn't possibly love <b>Petey</b> enough. She's an "ugly" girl who is vinegar to Finn's beautiful-whimsical self. She raises bees and she's so tough and sharp and GAH I LOVED HER. I loved her honest brutality.<br /><br />• It's about a conglomeration of <i>weird</i> stuff. Like corn and interesting brain conditions and honey and bees and possible magic and summer. It fits. IT WORKS. <br /><br />• It has this totally lazy summer vibe, but at the same time…it meant so much?! IDEK KNOW HOW TO EXPLAIN IT. But the writing <b>totally got into my bones and I couldn't stop hugging the book</b>.<br /><br />• It's not MAGICAL per se…I mean, you could see it from several angles. It <i>could</i> be magical, or it <i>could</i> be about delusions? And I LOVE those kind of books. It leaves it open to the reader's interpretation and even though it seemed to fuzz the lines of realism and magic — i never got lost or floundered or had "huh wut" moments. <b>I felt swept along by the story but <u>never</u> drowned.</b><br /><br />• Oh and you have no idea what it's about? Summer. A boy that everyone thinks is insanely weird and a girl who's missing and the possibility of the corn actually whispering to them. <br /><br />• DID I MENTION IT'S FREAKING BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN!??!<br /><br />• And the ships…<i>the ships</i>…omg, I sail them till dawn. I loved the friendships and the romances. I loved how lives entertained and fractured. <br /><br />• FINN IS EVERYTHING THE ADORABLE GORGEOUS BOY. And I was super intrigued by <a class="jsShowSpoiler spoilerAction">(view spoiler)</a><span class="spoilerContainer" style="display: none">[ the "face-blindness" thing. I loved how Petey cared enough to really think about it…because really. Everyone just dubbed Finn as "weird" but Petey was all like "why? let's get to the bottom of this". Her reaction hurt, of course (that she thought he didn't really love her and was only attracted because she was "ugly") but then HEY. If you've been called ugly all your life you're going to be insecure, right? I LOVE and ADORE Petey, btw. Anyway, I'd only ever vaguely heard about face-blindness but I didn't think it could be an actual thing like this!! I know people with autism have problem recognising faces because they don't <i>care</i> about faces…so I wondered if that would explain Finn. BUT YEAH. I had my theories, but I was super interested to learn about this thing. And I <i>loved</i> how it was kind of a theme through the book. <b>Was anyone seeing ANYONE truly?</b> Or where they seeing what they wanted to see? ERMAGERSH I LOVE THIS SO MUCH. <a class="jsHideSpoiler spoilerAction">(hide spoiler)</a>]</span><br /><br />• This is the kind of book that makes me want to work harder at being a writer because THIS WAS SO AMAZING.<br /><br />• I have literally not negatives. Naaada. Only positives.<br /><br />• ACTUALLY ONE NEGATIVE: I CAN'T BREATHE bECAUSE IT'S SO SO GOOD.<br /><br />• Basically if you like your contemporaries with a dash of summer and corn and a whisper of delusions/magic with complex and relatable characters, then go read it. ALSO, IF YOU, LIKE, HAVE A FACE GO READ IT. BECAUSE EVERYONE NEEDS READ IT. <br /><br />• And also they make smores and dip them in honey and daaaaaaayum if I wasn't allergic to honey I would be so onto that.</span>
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<a class="reviewDate createdAt right" href="/review/show/1225526665?book_show_action=true">Mar 12, 2015</a>
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<span class=" staticStars" title="it was amazing"><span size="15×15" class="staticStar p10">it was amazing</span><span size="15×15" class="staticStar p10"></span><span size="15×15" class="staticStar p10"></span><span size="15×15" class="staticStar p10"></span><span size="15×15" class="staticStar p10"></span></span>
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<span id="freeTextContainer13662768222184838419">Once upon a time, a rich, powerful and mysterious man falls in love with a woman and takes her away to a magical realm where all but one of her wishes are commands, everything she needs is available – from amazing rooms and castles to beautiful dresses and servants to give her anything she wants. All that he asks is for her to love him back. A romantic fairytale scenario for a beautiful woman who is desired above all.<br /><br />Except she says no. She says no every step of the way.<br /><br />Re-read that first paragr</span>
<span id="freeText13662768222184838419" style="display:none">Once upon a time, a rich, powerful and mysterious man falls in love with a woman and takes her away to a magical realm where all but one of her wishes are commands, everything she needs is available – from amazing rooms and castles to beautiful dresses and servants to give her anything she wants. All that he asks is for her to love him back. A romantic fairytale scenario for a beautiful woman who is desired above all.<br /><br />Except she says no. She says no every step of the way.<br /><br />Re-read that first paragraph knowing this, coming from this new perspective – how does that read now?<br /><br />Like your worst nightmare.<br /><br />+++<br /><br />When beautiful Roza went missing from Bone Gap, no one believed she was gone without her consent. No one believed her friend Finn – the sole witness of her abduction – when he told of her mysterious disappearance especially because he could not describe her kidnapper in detail.<br /><br />Now, months later, her disappearance still haunts Finn. It still troubles him because no one is looking for her, not even his brother Sean, who is supposed to love Roza.<br />Brought down by guilt, worry and fear, Finn carries on until all of those become impossible burdens to carry. He must find Roza and bring her back. A knight in shining armour? He would be, if Roza wasn&rsquo;t also such a strong narrator and didn&rsquo;t have such a superb voice and agency within this narrative. She is her own knight in shining armour too. They both are.<br /><br />+++<br /><br />A lot of the narrative is from Finn&rsquo;s viewpoint but the story goes back and forth between now and then, following Roza&rsquo;s viewpoint as well as other inhabitants of Bone Gap including Petey, a girl who works with bees and who develops a beautiful if fraught relationship with Finn.<br /><br />The thrust of the story depicts how Roza got to Bone Gap, how she stayed on then disappeared without a trace, how her life impacts the lives of those she left behind. More interesting to me is how the author was able to imagine, create, portray Roza&rsquo;s impact to everybody&rsquo;s lives without making her solely a puppet, a subject, a thing with no desires or agency. This is the story of Finn and Petey, of Bone Gap and above all, of Roza.<br /><br />+++<br /><br />Without spoiling: there is a reason for Finn not being able to describe the captor. It makes for a very compelling and unreliable narrative.<br /><br />Without spoiling: this is a Fantasy novel. The fantasy elements are part fairytale retelling part mythological journey into the underworld. I&rsquo;ve seen this book described as Magical Realism: I strongly disagree.<br /><br />+++<br /><br />Finn loves Roza and is moved by their friendship to go after her. No one believes he is not in love with her because she is so beautiful and surely they must have romantic feelings for each other.<br /><br />He is in love with Petey. But no one can possibly believe that because Petey is so ugly and surely Finn only pities Petey. Even Petey believes that.<br /><br />Finn is a great character. But Roza and Petey are amazing. Well-drawn, complex, diverse girls whose lives have been marred by the cruelty and carelessness of a world that puts a lot of stock on beauty. The different ways this has impacted them, shaped the way they interact with the world and their self-image is portrayed thoughtfully and with great sensibility without turning &ldquo;beauty&rdquo; into the source of all evil.<br /><br />Bone Gap is a book about perspective. About the difference between looking and seeing. About fairytales, self-image, the heavy burden that beauty can be and the pernicious ways we look at and treat women. It&rsquo;s awfully tense and there is this feeling of anxious momentum that runs through this novel. It&rsquo;s also very romantic where it matters, empowering where it counts and beautiful in its telling. It&rsquo;s a great companion book to be read alongside September Girls by Bennett Madison, A Wicked Thing by Rhiannon Thomas and Imaginary Girls by Nova Ren Suma.<br /><br />A strong contender for a top 10 this year.</span>
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