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Bone by Bone

by Carol O'Connell

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5343234,802 (3.74)62
In the northern California town of Coventry, two teenage brothers go into the woods one day, but only one comes back. No one knows what happened to the younger brother, Josh, until twenty years later, when the older brother, Oren, now an ex-investigator for the Army CID, returns to Coventry for the first time in many years and sets out to solve the mystery of his brother's murder.… (more)
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» See also 62 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
This is a new author to me, recommended by a friend. Turns out it was an excellent recommendation. It's my favorite type of murder mystery....lots of suspects, twists and turns, but so well written that it doesn't confuse me with outlandish situations. Secrets from the past catch up to the present and a small town is immersed in a mystery. Highly recommended. ( )
  Terrie2018 | Feb 21, 2020 |
Intricately plotted twisty suspense novel about the search for the truth behind the 20-year-old disappearance of a teenage photographer.

Set in a small town on the remote coast of northern California, the story begins with the homecoming of Oren Hobbs, brother of the long-vanished Josh Hobbs. In a suitably creepy beginning, Josh Hobbs is finally coming home ... one bone at a time.

Oren's investigation digs deep into the psyche of a small town, where nearly everyone seems to be harboring a nasty little secret. O'Connell presents a huge menu of possible suspects, garnished with various motivations as appetizers. The truth, when it finally emerges, is both horrifying and banal, as evil so often is.

The romance sub-plot never really took off for this reviewer, but the rest of the book is a first-rate, compelling read. ( )
  LyndaInOregon | Nov 14, 2019 |
Disappointing to me. O'Connell's usual high quality of storytelling took a hit with this book. She seems to have written it just to write about a bunch of quirky characters in a quirky small town. It makes me wonder if O'Connell has ever even visited a small town before. Does she honestly think places like this exist? And the characters don't act like any rational human beings I've ever encountered. There is some entertainment value in the sheer carnival-type atmosphere she's created. ( )
  dorie.craig | Jun 22, 2017 |
Starts a little slow, but has a nice pace at the end. Usual nice feel for her characters. In a town where everybody has secrets, it does not pay to document them. ( )
  bgknighton | Oct 29, 2014 |
A letter from his family's faithful housekeeper Hannah draws former Army CID agent Oren to the family homestead, where he finds that human bones are being left on his father's doorstep. Years ago, he and his brother Josh had gone into the woods together and Josh never returned. Now Josh appears to be coming back a piece at a time.

There are plenty of odd and off-beat characters in this one. We learn about them bit by bit -- including knowledge of the missing Josh, who died so young but had antagonized so many people.

I have mixed feelings about this one. It did keep me reading, (er, listening, as I read it via audio). Some of it felt a little forced, artificial. I've found that to be an issue in O'Connel's books sometimes -- in her eagerness to spin a plot, she often goes overboard in creating odd people and plot twists. But, as I said, it kept me wanting to know more and getting emotionally invested in the odd lot of folks. And as always, the actual writing is marvelous. Maybe I should give it a higher rating for its ability to pull me in despite my reservations. ( )
  tymfos | Jul 1, 2014 |
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This book is dedicated to men and women who stood in harm's way, to those who came home with the damage that shows and also the damage that no one sees and no one else can know.
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A batty old man of the cloth had once described the Hobbs boy as a joke of God's: an archangel of the warrior cast and a beacon for women with carnal intentions.
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In the northern California town of Coventry, two teenage brothers go into the woods one day, but only one comes back. No one knows what happened to the younger brother, Josh, until twenty years later, when the older brother, Oren, now an ex-investigator for the Army CID, returns to Coventry for the first time in many years and sets out to solve the mystery of his brother's murder.

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