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The Bones Of The Old Ones (2012)

by Howard Andrew Jones(Favorite Author)
4.01 of 5 Votes: 1
0312646755 (ISBN13: 9780312646752)
Thomas Dunne Books
The Chronicles of Sword and Sand
review 1: Asim and Dabir face both a cabal of ancient immortal (but not unkillable) sorcerers and an immensely powerful menace from a frozen world beyond this one. They also both fall in love, though one is destined for disappointment because the woman turns out to be too stubbornly pigheaded to shut up at a pivotal negotiation. On the other hand, she may be back in future episodes. I'll be waiting impatiently for said sequels too, because Jones spins a great yarn with vivid Arabian Nights style settings and atmosphere.
review 2: The Bones of the Old Ones is the sequel to The Desert of Souls, following the continuing adventures of scholar Dabir and guardsman Asim in medieval Iraq. Thankfully, lightning strikes twice, and while Mr. Jones may not have put as much effort in
... moreto the prose of the second book as the first (which was beautifully written as well as being extremely entertaining and highly imaginative), the characters, story, and world-development are all so well written that I can't really complain. As with its predecessor, The Bones of the Old Ones creates a seamless blend of the historical Iraq around the end of the first millennium A.D. with the fantastic world of the Thousand and One Nights (with some other sources such as Gilgamesh thrown in for good measure) and catches the strange crossroads of cultures that Iraq represented at the time, meshed between Greek, Kurdish, Turkic, Persian, Arab, and Jewish civilizations along with the detritus of the many decayed Mesopotamian peoples and their many mythological traditions. In this book, Dabir (still licking his emotional wounds from Desert of Souls) and Asim have a mystery dropped in their lap as a Persian noblewoman in distress is brought to their home with scattered memories of kidnap, magic, and murder by strange men. As a result of this encounter, the two are pulled into a clash between a legendary group of immortals, a wrathful ice spirit, and their long-time nemesis, a Greek nercomancer named Lydia as all seek to acquire a group of ancient magical bone-carved weapons. The quest, set against the backdrop of an ice-bound desert is made the more urgent by Asim's growing attachment to the Persian noblewoman, who is possessed by malevolent spirit and in grave danger from all sides. There are a lot of reasons the book works; Mr. Jones' excellent knowledge of the period and both religious and mythological traditions, the authentic feel (and camaraderie) of the characaters, the gripping plot, the nefarious scheming villains, and the vibrant descriptions of the wintry setting, but what makes the book classic for me (as with Desert of Souls) is Asim's wonderful narration, which provides a nice combination of wit, gravitas, and poignant observation to guide the reader through the adventure, much like an Arabic sword-wielding (and more witty) version of Dr. Watson (indeed, there is a great deal about Dabir and Asim that is comparable to Sherlock and Watson, though they deal with a decidedly more supernatural set of villains). In short, the Bones of the Old Ones was everything I could hope for in a sequel and as long as Mr. Jones can put out books of this caliber he'll sit near the top of my must-read list. less
Reviews (see all)
A well-told adventure with compelling characters and page-turning plot.
I enjoyed it, but not as much as the first book in the series.
Arabian fantasy at its finest!
enjoyed this book very much.
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