City of Bones

488 pages

Published June 15, 1996 by Tor Fantasy.


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4 stars (5 reviews)

“Khat, a member of a humanoid race created by the Ancients to survive in the Waste, and Sagai, his human partner, are relic dealers working on the edge of society, trying to stay one step ahead of the Trade Inspectors and to support Sagai’s family. Khan soon discovers that the deadly trade politics of Charisat’s upper tiers aren’t the only danger. The relics the Warders want are the key to an Ancient magic of unknown power, and, as all the inhabitants of Charisat know, no one understands the Ancients’ magic.” - from

1 edition

Review of 'City of Bones' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

A book that made me gleeful to read. Why? It's urban fantasy in an imagined casbah on a desolate world. It gives me a protagonist who's smart enough that when he's stupid, he'd really stupid. It teased me with the possibility of an mpreg (and you're going to have to trust me on this one) that made me think "neat!" rather than "ew." It was a mystery and and a romp at once, and half the mystery was the entire nature of their world. There were no helpless maidens, the villain was never certain, and danger menaced on all sides. Also, people commented several times on the prettiness of the male protagonist, which made me happy.

Martha Wells always uses her books to look at how societies regulate interactions between men and women, and although a minor theme, this is here too. (rough paraphrase: "If I'd stayed, I'd be someone's …

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