Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

bone gap

Bone Gap

By: Laura Ruby

Genre: Magical Realism

Publication Date: March 3, 2015

Bang Bang Rating bang

Overview

Bone Gap Illinois is a little town that has gaps where one can fall into and never find their way out.  When Roza goes missing and creepy Finn doesn’t help her, the town suspects Finn but Finn suspects a mysterious stranger.

Dang, That Was Good

  • This is a very polarizing book.  People are either going to not like it because it’s creepy and not the genre they like or are used to or they will love it for its metaphorical prose and symbolism . I LOVED THE BOOK hence the 5 bombs.
  • There is a lot going on in this book.  There are the obvious themes such as beauty and identity.  There is a bit of mythology and fantasy and realistic fiction.
    • Beauty-So this book is clearly about beauty.  Roza is breathtaking and men treat her badly because they think she should just be beautiful.  She shouldn’t educate herself or even have thoughts.  In the beginning, Roza likes men who dote on her but her grandmother’s sage words begin to make her think.  Her grandmother wants her to find a man “who listens to what she has to say.” She leaves for America to go to school but things get worse before they get better.  She is taken because of her beauty.  Moral of the story, beauty doesn’t mean bliss.
      • Petey on the other hand is perceived to be ugly.  She is also mistreated by men and quite similarly to Roza.
      • Both women meet a man who greatly affects their lives.
    • Identity.  There are references to names throughout the book.  Finn has several nicknames given by the townspeople. Petey, whose real name is Pricilla, hates her name.  Their weird old neighbor is named Charlie Valentine but that’s not really his name.
    • Mythology. This is my interpretation, I could be wrong.  I don’t want to spoil it for anyone so click here to see my theory.  Password is Bone
    • Symbolism-Bees are major in this novel.  Beehives are metaphors in Poland and the queen bee is mentioned many times and I think this can be connected back to the theme of beauty.  I think the queen bee symbolizes feminism. Bees can also be traced back to mythology-(I could be reaching with that one.)

I’m not going to say anything else because I don’t want to ruin it for other readers.  If you want to see my theories, click the link above.

That’s Too Bad, Dang

  • I liked everything about this book.  The only thing I will say is that I would recommend this book to 11th grade and up only because I don’t think younger teens will “get it.”  Unless you have a younger teen who is a good reader, it might be way over their heads.

Overall

I wasn’t expecting much from this book but Ruby’s writing hooks you immediately. All the character are beautiful-from the grandmother who only appears on a couple of pages to Finn, the main character.

After the initial read, it seems to be lesson on beauty- how the world treats people based on the way they look. But beneath the surface, there are mythical and mysterious characters.  Everything Ruby writes has a purpose-the bees, the horse, the corn, the ghost.

It’s a weird book especially if you are expecting a mystery or a straight up fantasy.  If you can wrap your head around the fact that it’s contemporary with a hint of fantasy, you will enjoy it.

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