Review: The Bone Houses

Title: The Bone Houses
Author: Emily Lloyd-Jones
Genre: Young Adult, Historical, Fantasy, Horror
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Source: Owlcrate box
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: September 24, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Aderyn (“Ryn”) only cares about two things: her family, and her family’s graveyard. And right now, both are in dire straits. Since the death of their parents, Ryn and her siblings have been scraping together a meager existence as gravediggers in the remote village of Colbren, which sits at the foot of a harsh and deadly mountain range that was once home to the fae. The problem with being a gravedigger in Colbren, though, is that the dead don’t always stay dead.

The risen corpses are known as “bone houses,” and legend says that they’re the result of a decades-old curse. When Ellis, an apprentice mapmaker with a mysterious past, arrives in town, the bone houses attack with new ferocity. What is it that draws them near? And more importantly, how can they be stopped for good?

Together, Ellis and Ryn embark on a journey that will take them deep into the heart of the mountains, where they will have to face both the curse and the long-hidden truths about themselves.


Ryn lives with her siblings after the death of her parents, continuing her father’s job as gravedigger. Her father went into the forest one day to investigate the “bone houses,” dead bodies that would rise and attack anyone who entered the forest, and he never came back. Now, the bone houses are entering the town. Ryn saves Ellis, a mapmaker from the kingdom, from a bone house attack. When the bone houses become more aggressive, Ryn and Ellis venture into the forest to figure out how to save her town and her family.

This was a creepy zombie story. I liked that it was historical fiction, so it was removed from our world. From the names that were used, it seemed to be a Welsh setting. I don’t usually like zombie stories, because they can seem forced and fake. Since this story had historical aspects, the bone house zombies could be more realistic.

This story also had some really emotional parts at the end. There were some twists that surprised me, and they were heart wrenching too. Even though there were some heart breaking parts, I really liked the ending.

This is a great spooky historical story.

What to read next:

Bone Crier’s Moon by Kathryn Purdie

The Kingdom of Back by Marie Lu

Have you read The Bone Houses? What did you think of it?

Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

3 thoughts on “Review: The Bone Houses”

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