Thursday, July 1, 2010

Into Boneville

A few weeks ago I mentioned that I read Out of Boneville, the first book in the Bone series by Jeff Smith. I had picked up the book on a whim and had been fascinated by the first chapter in this graphic novel series. Shortly afterwards I picked up the second book The Great Cow Race and was brought deeper into the story. So after picking up books Three and Four on Tuesday at the library (and polishing them off in short order), I knew I had to go back last night and borrow the rest of the series. Once we got home I promptly sat down and read the last five books (5-9). I was up well past midnight, but it was worth it.

As I mentioned before, the Bone series follows the adventures of the Bone cousins after they are kicked out of Boneville and find themselves in a strange valley. The cousins, Fone, Phoney, and Smiley are as different as night and day. Fone is the main character of the story and is of the noble hero mindset. He's extremely loyal, intelligent, and caring. He's the heart and soul of the books. Phoney is the con artist. He's the reason they got kicked out of Boneville. His constant get-rich-quick schemes often lead the boys into more trouble or fuel the fire of whatever drama is going on. Smiley is the simpleton who seems to go along with either cousin. The cousins end up befriending Thorn and her tough-as-nails Grandma who end up being far more than we expect. They also encounter a friendly flea who helps them out, a tough and loyal villager who's sweet on Grandma, a red dragon who always seems to aid them at the right time, and a slew of other unique characters.

The story follows the group of heroes as they fight against the Rat Creatures who terrorize them, a gigantic mountain lion who can't decide his allegiance, and The Lord of the Locusts, an ancient evil that will destroy the valley and everyone in it. During the series we encounter ancient religions, a crazy hooded figure who'll stop at nothing to kill Thorn and kidnap Phoney, and enough magic and mischief to keep us entertained. Add onto that the constant schemes and dilemmas that the Bone cousins create or deal with and you have a pretty action packed series.

The series is located in the children's book sections of many bookstores. It was in the young adult graphic novels section of the library but I've also seen it in the adult graphic novel section of bookstores. One bookstore had it located in all three places. The series can be read by children but I actually think that adults might get more out of it. There is a lot going on in this series. In many ways it reminded me of the Lord of the Rings series. No matter what, it's a series I recommend. Quick reads, unique and interesting characters, lots of action, and some great humor and emotion. I was completely enthralled.

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