The Bone People, Paperback
3 out of 5 (2 ratings)


Winner of the Booker Prize in 1985, The Bone People is the story of Kerewin, a despairing part-Maori artist who is convinced that her solitary life is the only way to face the world.

Her cocoon is rudely blown away by the sudden arrival during a rainstorm of Simon, a mute six-year-old whose past seems to hold some terrible trauma.

In his wake comes his foster-father Joe, a Maori factory worker with a nasty temper.

The narrative unravels to reveal the truths that lie behind these three characters, and in so doing displays itself as a huge, ambitious work that tackles the clash between Maori and European characters in beautiful prose of a heartrending poignancy. 'In this novel, New Zealand's people, its heritage and landscape are conjured up with uncanny poetry and perceptiveness' Sunday Times




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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

I read this book in undergrad and though it was one of the best books I had ever read.

Review by

The Bone People / Keri Hulme2 starsSimon is a little boy and is mute. When he comes across Kerewin, an artist, he seems to like her and wants to spend time with her. Simon's “foster” father (though it's not offical) is a Maori man, Joe. The three get to know each other.I did not like the style of writing and that put me off right away. I skimmed through most of it. The most interesting parts for me involved Simon's interactions with Kerewin, and Simon on his own. There were seemingly inexplicable indented paragraphs throughout the book; I'm sure the indents were supposed to indicate something, but I never figured it out. There were a couple of sections at the end that were a little more interesting, but overall, I really didn't like it.