Thank you so much to the publisher Nyx Publishing for my advance copy of The Bone Way. This in no way affects my opinions.
Title: The Bone Way
Author: Holly J. Underhill
Publisher: Nyx Publishing
Release Date: 26th June
Teagan’s wife, Cressidae, is missing. She has left for the Shadow Realm, a kingdom of the dead filled with untold nightmares—and the only place that can save Teagan from a lethal poison that’s killing her slowly. It is ruled by a princess said to make powerful deals with those brave enough to find her, and Cressidae has gone to bargain for Teagan’s life. Cressidae has forgotten one very important thing: no one makes it out on their own.
Despite the risks to her own safety, Teagan is determined to save her wife—and perhaps even herself in the process. The princess of the Shadow Realm, however, doesn’t let mortals roam her territories without opposition. In this thrilling fantasy novella, Teagan and Cressidae must face both the horrors of the Shadow Realm as well as their own past.
I had high hopes heading into The Bone Way by Holly J. Underhill, and it is safe to say that I am not disappointed. I have been looking for an Orpheus and Eurydice retelling for so long, so I was extremely excited when I stumbled across this one on Twitter, especially as it is sapphic. It had everything that I was looking for and more.
When it comes to the characters, we spend the majority of the time following Teagan, and I really loved her character. I love her attitude and her approach to situations that were out of her control. I also loved the amount of character development that went into her, as I feel that it pulled the story together. While we didn’t get as much of Cressidae, I really liked what we did see. Both of the characters balanced each other out well, and it was great to see that, especially with the romance.
It was lovely to see an already established romance form the core of The Bone Way because it felt as if there wasn’t a need to go over everything that happens at the beginning of a relationship. You could already see the love that the two characters had for each other and the lengths that they would go to ensure each other’s safety. I did also love that we did get to see glimpses of the origin of their relationship through smaller flashbacks, but most of it was left unsaid.
When it comes to the worldbuilding, I would have personally liked a tiny bit more, but The Bone Way is only a 100+ page novella so I can see why it lacked a little bit. I would love to have read a full-length version of this story, just to be emersed in Wysteria because it seems like such a magical place.
I can’t wait to read what Holly J. Underhill is going to write next; fingers crossed it will be greek myth inspired again. If you love any sort of retelling, I highly urge that you pick up The Bone Way; you will not regret it.