Short Fiction Friday: The Osteomancer's Son

The Osteomancer's Son by Greg van Eekhout, Clarkesworld #101

Last year Greg van Eekhout published his first book in the Daniel Blackland series, California Bones. Which was for me highly enjoyable book and showed a highly inventive new idea in Urban Fantasy: Osteomancy. Special people are able to suck on bones or smoke or digest them in some way and gain special powers associated with those beings. Now I was looking in Clarkesworld issue #101 and I saw that Greg van Eekhout was in it with his story of The Osteomancer's Son. Now the Daniel Blackland series directly came to mind and was hoping to read another blast of a story. Which I got! But I also found out that The Osteomancer's Son isn't actually a prequel to California Bones. It featured as the start of it all! 

In The Osteomancer's Son you are introduced to Daniel Ludeking as a young boy who wonders with his father on the beach and stumble on a bone, and not just an ordinary bone, the bone of a Kraken. Here you learn that Daniel's father isn't an average kind of guy. He is an Osteomancer, a person able to ingest bones and get powers. Daniel's father wouldn't be a Ludeking is he didn't start the process early with Daniel himself and soon Daniel finds the powers of the mighty Kraken raging through his body. From this point on the starts in the deep end of it all and you seen just how nasty the world is.  Because everything is far from roses and sunshine when it comes to the powers of Osteomancers, Daniel looses his father and is tasked by his uncle to visit the lair of the Hierarch, the most powerful Osteomancer alive. In this confrontation there is powerful display of the forces at play and already see a lot of the versatility in between the different sources of the bones. 

After reading this short story, though there was overlap with California Bones, I am once again reminded that this is really cool premise. I also just found out that the sequel to California Bones, Pacific Fire, was published just this January by Tor. I so want to read this book! Greg van Eekhout has really thought of a cool promise and truly makes it come to life in his books. I am glad to see that Greg van Eekhout turned this short story into not one book, but a whole trilogy!

If you are unfamiliar with California Bones, visit this link to Clarkesworld and read the story for free.


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