Full-fledged war is breaking out all over, and only Fone Bone and a mysterious Crown of Horns stand between the brave family brood and the demonic return of the Lord of the Locusts. The conclusion to Jeff Smith's nine-volume visual epic will ensnare Bone fans from the first page. A graphic novel cycle that has never slowed down.
In this ninth and final volume of Smith's award-winning Bone series, Thorn and her loyal friends must defeat not only the evil Briar Rose but also free the land and its inhabitants from the Locust spirit. Beaten by tyrant Tarsil's soldiers, Thorn and faithful Fone Bone are locked in the dungeon, as Briar Rose and her army storm the castle. Spurred on by a recurring dream, Thorn is determined to break free and find the Crown of Horns, which will destroy the nightmare spirit known as the Locust but may also kill Thorn herself. The Locust was imprisoned within the legendary dragon queen Mim, whose body was encased in stone but who now threatens to break free. With the help of Gran'ma Ben and Fone Bone's cousins, Smiley and Phoney, Thorn is able to escape and make her way to Tanen Gard, the dragon burial ground, where she hopes to find the Crown of Horns. Smith expertly combines all the best elements of fantasy epics like Lord of the Rings -a plucky hero(ine), all manner of creatures and a kingdom rich in mythological history-with enough humor to appeal to readers young and old. (Feb.) Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Michael Jung
Winner of ten Eisner Awards and ten Harvey Awards, Jeff Smith's "Bone" graphic novel series has won millions of fans since it first appeared in comic book form in 1991. The series, described as "sweeping as the ‘Lord of the Rings' cycle, but much funnier" by Andrew Arnold in Time.com, follows the adventures of the Bone cousins, three short, white, bald creatures who look like they stepped out of a Disney animated comedy film. Yet the adventure the Bones find themselves on is deadly serious when they encounter a girl named Thorn and her enigmatic Gran'ma Ben and join them on their mission to save their valley from a war with the evil Lord of the Locusts. In Crown of Horns, the ninth and final title in the series, Bone's cousin Fone Bone must help Thorn travel to the sacred burial ground of the dragons in search of the Crown of Horns, a mysterious object that could end the war once and for all. More serious in tone than the preceding "Bone" graphic novels, Crown of Horns presents a grim picture of the horrors of war as Thorn and the Bone cousins deal with imprisonment, a siege, and numerous deadly hazards. Even so, the book manages to include quite a bit of comic reliefprimarily from the Bones' greedy cousin "Phoney" Bone who tries to steal money throughout the entire war, only to have it slip from his fingers. Both a stirring high fantasy and animated comedy, "Bone" is one of those rare graphic novel series that succeeds on multiple levels. Reviewer: Michael Jung
With Queen Rose banished and Princess Thorn, along with her loyal friend Fone Bone, imprisoned by Tarsil the Usurper, the future of the city of Atheia looks grim. The worst, however, has yet to begin. The Queen's sister Briar, who is possessed by the evil Lord of the Locust, has returned. When she defeats Tarsil and penetrates the city's protective walls, the clash for control of the alley and ultimately a climactic struggle of good versus evil ensues. As the fierce battle wages around them, Fone Bone and Thorn huddle in their dungeon prison, beaten and bruised by their captors. Thoughts of escape are clouded by Thorn's vivid dreams of dragons and the vision of her dead mother's command to find the elusive Crown of Horns. Once free, they must not only confront the daunting physical obstacles in their search for the Crown but also those of their heart and mind as well. With its intricately detailed images and character revelations, this satisfying ninth and final volume of the critically acclaimed Bone saga continues the series' tradition of the ideal balance of humor and drama. To fully understand the background of the Bone cousins and the other key characters, readers should begin with the first installment, Bone Volume One: Out From Boneville (Cartoon Books, 1996). A user-friendly Web site created by the author (http://www.boneville.com) complements the series. Librarians will want to purchase multiple copies of all nine books in the saga for their collections, for their mass appeal ensures that the volumes will be in constant circulation. VOYA CODES: 3Q 4P M J S G (Readable without serious defects; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, definedas grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Graphic Novel Format). 2004, Cartoon Books, 232p., Trade pb. Ages 11 to 18.
VOYA - Karen Sykeny
This colorized reissue of a previously self-published, critically acclaimed, and superbly popular series is full of high adventure, suspense, and great mythology. Readers find Fone Bone and Thorn in prison with the war between the Locusts, Rat Creatures, and people of the valley just beginning. Gran'ma Ben has entered Atheia and is doing her best to defend the city. Fone and Thorn want to help her and believe that finding and using the Crown of Horns will destroy the Locusts along with the Hooded One, who wants to conquer the people of Atheia and use her dark power for evil purposes. The illustrations are fabulous and tell the story well. There are some funny moments on the part of Smiley and Phoney Bone when treasure hunting, but this volume has a more intense and serious good-versus-evil focus because it covers the end of the series and the final battle. It is an essential purchase for graphic novel collections and will be popular among high fantasy readers and those looking for adventure and humor. The quality and consistency of both artwork and story makes this series and its climatic conclusion, one of the best graphic novel series for readers of all ages. Reviewer: Karen Sykeny