Book Review: The Mask Falling by Samantha Shannon, The Bone Season #4
It was so amazing to dive back into the world of Scion (even though it is slightly horrifying)! I love dystopian fiction, and couple that with a badass heroin and I am there.
The best part of this series for me is Paige and Arcturus' developing relationship. I love how they're finally on equal footing in this book. The power dynamic is much more balanced here, and it really allowed them to form a stronger bond and learn more about one another. Usually it's Arcturus acting as Paige's fierce protector, but in TMF he supports more from the background, allowing her to piece herself back together after the torture she's endured. Paige's journey to find herself again after escaping London was gripping to read, and Shannon really explored the emotions well and respectfully. Arcturus is affectionate and supportive, but never diminishes Paige or prevents her from making her own decisions. Paige is independent, fighting for her freedom, whilst also seeking advice from Arcturus when she needs it. Likewise, Arcturus isn't afraid to ask Paige for her help, leading to a very well balanced relationship.
My only critique of this book was that I missed all my favourite characters! Paige has travelled to Paris to escape from Scion London and work with the Domino programme, and because of this she's had to leave all her friends behind with only Arcturus for support. However, there were some great new characters introduced and I'm excited to see what's in store for them in the following books.
The world building in this series is incredible. It's planned to be a seven book series, which gives a lot of time to delve into the world and develop the characters. I can feel this series building up to an epic finale and I'm praying that it won't be too many years before we get there!
Whilst I did really enjoy TMF, it wasn't quite as exciting as the previous books for me (The Mime Order has so far been my favourite), and definitely felt a bit more like a filler to lead onto the next book, but nonetheless it is a fantastic piece of work and as always I love Shannon's work.
Read the summary below:
Dreamwalker Paige Mahoney has eluded death again. Snatched from the jaws of captivity and consigned to a safe house in the Scion Citadel of Paris, she finds herself caught between those factions that seek Scion's downfall and those who would kill to protect the Rephaim's puppet empire.
The mysterious Domino Program has plans for Paige, but she has ambitions of her own in this new citadel. With Arcturus Mesarthim-her former enemy-at her side, she embarks on an adventure that will lead her from the catacombs of Paris to the glittering hallways of Versailles. Her risks promise high reward: the Parisian underworld could yield the means to escalate her rebellion to outright war.
As Scion widens its bounds and the free world trembles in its shadow, Paige must fight her own memories after her ordeal at the hands of Scion. Meanwhile, she strives to understand her bond with Arcturus, which grows stronger by the day. But there are those who know the revolution began with them-and could end with them...