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BoneMan's Daughters (2009)

by Ted Dekker

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1,2335315,732 (3.42)23
A serial killer is kidnapping young girls, breaking their bones, and leaving them to die. Ryan Evans is an intelligence officer who is alienated from his own family. When the BoneMan kidnaps Ryan's daughter, Ryan must take on this deranged killer himself to save her.
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Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
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  BooksInMirror | Feb 19, 2024 |
I'm truly sad to have to give this book only 2 stars. I've read many of Dekker's other books and loved them; I consider him one of my favorite authors. But this particular book was rather messy.

The characters are contrived and superficial, and their stories hold a few irregularities. For example, the daughter Bethany is 16 but everyone thinks she looks 18, and her modeling career is starting to take off. Really? It wasn't enough for her to be a normal teenager? I thought maybe this fact would have a justification somewhere later in the book, but it was completely irrelevant. In one chapter, she's a depressed, rebellious teenager singing about "Makin' love and till the morning light," and in the next, she's listening to Christian bands. After she's kidnapped and converses very shortly with her abductor, she manages (with very little information) to deduce his motive, and understand his past, which includes a bad relationship with his mother. This strikes me as completely unrealistic. She's 16 years old and was abducted and held captive for a week... I highly doubt she would be thinking so clearly and analytically, especially since nowhere else in the book is her intelligence touted as supreme, like her beauty is.

I also incredibly disliked the ending. It ends with a verse, Genesis 3:15, which reads "And I will put enmity and hate and hostility between you, the serpent, and the woman; between your seed and hers. You will strike his heel, but he will crush your head."

The BoneMan claims to be Satan, and treats Ryan, the main character, as a God-like figure. Ryan is shown throughout the book to be a completely selfish man who deserts his family and then has a partial change of heart (he decides he loves his daughter, but still doesn't love his wife) and the story is of his attempt to rescue his daughter, which he succeeds at. He bests the BoneMan, and he and his daughter proceed to burn the man, presumably, alive. Ryan's actions are seemingly justified in the ending, but this book isn't the Bible. My problem with this whole thing is that Ryan ISN'T God, not even close. And though his actions are terrible, the BoneMan isn't actually the devil. The story, I presume, is meant to demonstrate how far God will go to save one of His children. I guess I just don't believe that for God, the end always justifies the means. He sacrificed His Son on the cross (and His Son Jesus was willing) to save His children, yet never sinned in the process, unlike the main character of this story. It was a very poor allegory.


The writing of this book became very repetitive, particularly the sections told from the BoneMan's perspective. And last but not least, Dekker's characters take the name of God in vain, which very much bothers me as a Christian, knowing that Dekker is also a Christian. It would have been very easy to use some other exclamation without undermining the story, and it frustrates me that he chose to defy a very basic biblical command anyway.

All in all, it was interesting enough to merit 2 stars, but I will probably hold off for a while on reading Dekker's other books. ( )
  RachelRachelRachel | Nov 21, 2023 |
Eeeewwww gross! There was some serious gross stuff in this book. It was interesting though. ( )
  StarKnits | Feb 6, 2019 |
Classic Dekker. Didn't particularly care for the ending, but overall a good read. ( )
  snotbottom | Sep 19, 2018 |
Best Dekker thriller yet. Very well done.
  HGButchWalker | Sep 21, 2016 |
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The day that Ryan Evans' world forever changed began as any other day he'd spent in the hot desert might have begun.
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A serial killer is kidnapping young girls, breaking their bones, and leaving them to die. Ryan Evans is an intelligence officer who is alienated from his own family. When the BoneMan kidnaps Ryan's daughter, Ryan must take on this deranged killer himself to save her.

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They Call him the BoneMan, a serial killer who's abducted six young women. He's the perfect father looking for the perfect daughter, and when his victims fail to meet his lofty expectations, he kills them by breaking their bones and leaving them to die.

Intelligence officer Ryan Evans, on the other hand, has lost all hope of ever being the perfect father. His daughter and wife have written him out of their lives.

Everything changes when BoneMan takes Ryan's estranged daughter, Bethany, as his seventh victim. Ryan goes after BoneMan on his own.

But the FBI sees it differently. New evidence points to the suspicion that Ryan is BoneMan. Now the hunter is the hunted, and in the end, only one father will stand.
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