Sometimes I encounter a story of artistic merit, that I just don't get. So it is with A Crowd of Bone, by Greer Gilman. It won the World Fantasy Award in 2004, so someone knew what it was about. And though it's a novella, I've read shorter novels, so there's plenty there. But I'll be darned if I know what I just read.
It's set in a Celtic place, I'm pretty certain, but the idiom is mostly unfamiliar, even with all the Celtic fantasy that has been done. One is supposed to work at it--it is a story told to a rescuer(?), with some other perspectives thrown in. I might have looked up some of the slang, but it probably would not have done much good as it reads more like unmetered verse, with its accordant license with words. I puzzled out that it was a tale of two young lovers, who seek work and travel together, sometimes acting, in the end working as farm labor. But with a lot more magic and power swirling about.
I simply cannot do this one justice, unfortunately. And just as unfortunately spent several days reading it. I will not rate it, I don't know how.