Wednesday, October 26, 2011

CSFF Tour: "The Bone House" by Stephen R. Lawhead

The Bone House
A Bright Empires Novel Bk 2
Author: Stephen R. Lawhead
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (September 6, 2011)
ISBN: 9781595548054
Available at Amazon

About the Book:
One piece of the skin map has been found. Now the race to unravel the future of the future turns deadly.
An avenue of Egyptian sphinxes, an Etruscan tufa tomb, a Bohemian coffee shop, and a Stone Age landscape where universes collide …

Kit Livingstone met his great grandfather Cosimo in a rainy alley in London where he discovered the reality of alternate realities.

Now he’s on the run – and on a quest, trying to understand the impossible mission he inherited from Cosimo: to restore a map that charts the hidden dimensions of the multiverse while staying one step ahead of the savage Burley Men.

The key is the Skin Map – but where it leads and what it means, Kit has no idea. The pieces have been scattered throughout this universe and beyond.

Mina, from her outpost in seventeenth-century Prague, is quickly gaining both the experience and the means to succeed in the quest. Yet so are those with evil intent, who from the shadows are manipulating great minds of history for their own malign purposes.

Across time and space, through manifest and hidden worlds, those who know how to use ley lines to travel through astral planes have left their own world behind in this, the second quest: to unlock the mystery of The Bone House.
My Thoughts:

First, let me say that I am really enjoying the series so far. The thought of ley travel is something that is fascinating because one can sit back and think, "What if..." The thought of going to different dimensions, times, planes, wormholes, etc. is nothing new, but the way Lawhead is developing the series, his take is unusual and interesting.

If you have not heard of the series, PLEASE READ THE FIRST BOOK ("The Skin Map") before diving into this one. This is the second of five novels and this series builds upon itself . You will be hopelessly lost if you start with this book.

The Bright Empire series is being marketed as Christian fiction, but honestly, so far I haven't seen anything of a Christian message. At this point I really don't see anything different than Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy. We have travel in different places, there are good guys and bad guys, and each contains an element of "magic". Pullman didn't bring his agenda to light until the last book. I am wondering if the Christian message will come later in this series as well. At this point though, it is nothing more than a secular series to me.

The characters are developing nicely as is the story. I'm finding more depth and complexity to each of them in this book. I'm still not sure what all the pieces of the map hold, but I'm developing a theory now (no spoilers here) and will have to wait until the third book to see if I'm correct. It does not come out until September 2012 - a very, very long wait wait for me, especially on the note this book ends.

If you enjoy science fiction, time travel, etc, you are really going to enjoy this series.

About the Author:

Stephen R. Lawhead is a prolific and bestselling author of mythic history and imaginative fiction. He is best known for his King Raven trilogy, a re-telling of the Robin Hood legend, and Pendragon Cycle, centering on the King Arthur legend. Other notable works include the Song of Albion, Celtic Crusades and Dragon King Trilogies, Byzantium, Patrick, Avalon, and the works of science-fiction Dream Thief and Empyrion saga. Lawhead makes his home in Oxford, England, with his wife.

If you would like to learn more about Stephen or his work, you can visit his website at:

See what others on the the Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Tour are saying about The Bone House:

Noah Arsenault
Red Bissell
Thomas Clayton Booher
Beckie Burnham
Morgan L. Busse
CSFF Blog Tour
Jeff Chapman
Carol Bruce Collett
Karri Compton
D. G. D. Davidson
Theresa Dunlap
April Erwin
Victor Gentile
Tori Greene
Ryan Heart
Bruce Hennigan
Timothy Hicks
Christopher Hopper
Janeen Ippolito
Becca Johnson
Jason Joyner
Carol Keen
Krystine Kercher
Katie McCurdy
Shannon McDermott
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Joan Nienhuis
Chawna Schroeder
Kathleen Smith
Donna Swanson
Rachel Starr Thomson
Robert Treskillard
Steve Trower
Fred Warren
Phyllis Wheeler
Nicole White
Rachel Wyant

In conjunction with the CSFF Blog Tour, I received a free copy of this book from the publisher


  1. I agree that reading The Skin Map first will make The Bone House read as it's meant to be read. I wonder if the the religious elements aren't developing along with the rest of the story.

    I have a theory, too, but I think I'll maybe fly my idea over at my site today when I write my review. We'll see. ;-)


  2. Good review. I, too, have some problem with the lack of a specific reference to the God of the Bible. He touched on God with the implication of "God has put eternity in the hearts of all men". Perhaps he will bring all of this together in the third book. We'll see.