The Bone Witch

In the captivating start to a new, darkly lyrical fantasy series for readers of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, Tea can raise the dead, but resurrection comes at a price…

Let me be clear: I never intended to raise my brother from his grave, though he may claim otherwise. If there’s anything I’ve learned from him in the years since, it’s that the dead hide truths as well as the living.

When Tea accidentally resurrects her brother from the dead, she learns she is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy means that she’s a bone witch, a title that makes her feared and ostracized by her community. But Tea finds solace and guidance with an older, wiser bone witch, who takes Tea and her brother to another land for training.

In her new home, Tea puts all her energy into becoming an asha―one who can wield elemental magic. But dark forces are approaching quickly, and in the face of danger, Tea will have to overcome her obstacles…and make a powerful choice.

I love Rin Chupeco’s work and became a big fan after reading Girl in the Well and The Suffering. When I discovered she was coming out with The Bone Witch I couldn’t wait to read it. Then I saw reviews begin pouring in and so many were less than positive that I began to worry but decided to hold out until I could judge for myself.

Chupeco’s writing style was, as I expected, beautifully descriptive and splendid so if you are into books with a strong mythology then you should give this one a chance especially as it seems to be the first in a new series.

I had more difficult getting into this one because I had some trouble understanding what was happening and had to re-read a few earlier chapters once I got far enough in the book to get more information. It has some decent potential but the book as a whole reminded me of the first movie in a trilogy where all the good stuff wasn’t going to happen until the second because the first was just set-up.

It was slower paced than the other two books so I had to adjust my expectations a lot. This book seems more focused on building characters and setting up a new world than creating a huge explosive plot line. It wasn’t bad but I could’ve used more action and plot than getting extreme details about daily routine or clothing.

I liked the characters and became invested in Tea enough that I want to know how she’s going to evolve in this series.

I could see why there were so many negative reviews because Chupeco had shown us what she’s capable of before and this was so different from her previous writing style; it wasn’t a bad book it was just a bit on the lackluster side. Plus there was a completely unneeded love triangle which did a disservice to the story.

There are more positives than negatives to make it still worth your time. The writing flows nicely, there is a great relationship developed between Tea and her brother, and tons of diversity in her characters. I still think it has potential when you realize it’s only the beginning of a new fantasy series so I’ll be checking out the sequel in the hopes that the action picks up.

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Thank you to Netgalley and Sourcebooks Fire for allowing me to review this book.

*synopsis and pic from

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