The Bonehill Curse, by Jon Mayhew
Necessity Bonehill is stuck at Rookery Heights – Academy for Young Ladies. Her parents dumped her there five years ago and haven’t been back to see her since. Ness runs away as often as she can, only to be tracked down each time by the interfering, busybody Miss Pinchet, who drags her back to the dreary, old school. She constantly bullies the other girls so her only friend is an old war veteran turned forgetful recluse Sergeant Major Morris.
We first meet Ness as she knocks out a boy in a fist fight. Miss Pinchet is quick to interrupt the fight and escort Ness back to the Academy where a present awaits her. Her Uncle Carlos has sent her an old bottle covered in strange depictions of hideous heads. The only instruction is that she must never, under any circumstances, open the bottle. Ness is understandably curious and after much deliberation, and a mysterious night time visitor, she does the opposite. She unleashes the terrible Djinn, Zaakiel, the last of his kind and captive of the bottle for many years. He has a history with Ness’ parents and grants Ness one wish before casting a curse upon her roommates and fleeing into the night.
Miss Pinchet, of course, blames Ness for her roommate’s sudden illness and Ness is forced to run away again, only this time she won’t be returning to Rookery Heights.
With the advice of Sergeant Major Morris ringing in her ears, Ness sets off for London in pursuit of Zaakiel. She isn’t the only one searching for Zaakiel however. The Laskhars of Sulayman, an ancient race, are also on the hunt and they have been searching for hundreds of years making huge sacrifices along the way.
Azuli is a Laskhar and together he and Ness start the most dangerous fight of their lives.
They battle members of Zaakiel’s cursed human army, take a flying carpet ride to the Oasis of the Amarant and discover secrets about Ness and her parents that threaten the very existence of mankind.
The Bonehill Curse is another great adventure by Jon Mayhew. Both Ness and Azuli are excellent leading characters showing bravery and cunning, with Ness’ fierce battle skills showing that girls can be just as tough as boys.
The Bonehill Curse is fast paced, with stacks of tension and heaps of classic adventure story telling. A monster mash up of Arabian Nights and Indiana Jones, what’s not to like?