At the fifteen percent mark of Bone Crier’s Moon by Kathryn Purdie, I was all set to mark it as a DNF and move on with my life. To be fair to the author and publisher, I vowed to read until the twenty-five percent mark and see if I felt the same way. Happily, I did not. Instead, I stayed up until 2 AM to finish this cute but predictable story.
Yes, it is very predictable. This includes everything from the best friend to the mother to the love interest. Normally, the fact that there is really nothing that is surprising about the story would be a tremendous turnoff. Instead, you can tell that Ms. Purdie had a lot of fun writing her story, and that makes all the difference. Her delight becomes your delight as you watch this Beauty and Beast type (sort of) story unfold.
Along the way, Ms. Purdie does bring up some sticky topics for readers to ponder. These ideas include the definition of murder versus the definition of sacrifice as well as choice versus fate. She also throws in the age-old debate of whether the sacrifice of one for the good of the many is acceptable. Younger readers might not catch these philosophical points, but older readers like myself always appreciate the opportunities to reflect on such topics.
Now, the ending of Bone Crier’s Moon has a certain plot development that looks like it might be headed into a very cliched and tired direction. I hope that is not Ms. Purdie’s intent. For all its faults, I thoroughly enjoyed this magic-laden meet-cute masking as a fantasy novel about ferrying souls to their afterlives. I will not be happy if the second book in the series turns it into something different.