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Amelia was just six-years-old when her friend Bossy came rushing down the road to say there was going to be trouble. It had already started in Derry, she said. But what had Derry got to do with Belfast and with them, the Ardoyne gang wondered? Derry was another country, another planet – Bossy had got it all wrong, they decided.

Three years later, amid raids and shootings, Amelia's most prized treasure is her collection of plastic bullets – 37 in all. As time goes by midnight raids, bombings and shootings become commonplace. Murdered friends are remembered for a fleeting second, then life goes on as normal.

In this atmosphere Amelia grows into a troubled, anorexic young woman. 'No Bones' follows her life, her dysfunctional family and her friends as they muddle through The Troubles in Northern Ireland. The book follows Amelia to England as she tries to escape the past that refuses to be buried, and through her mental breakdown and eventual recovery.

Belfast writer Anna Burns' debut novel, paints a heart-breaking, poignant, yet darkly funny picture of life in Belfast during some of Northern Ireland's darkest days. 'No Bones' is an engrossing, thought-provoking and highly recommendable read.

Joanne Ahern