Wednesday, April 2, 2014

BAGS of BONES Mini-Reviews

Mini-reviews for my A-to-Z BLUES, PUPUS, and REVIEWS theme
appear on Monday and Wednesday.
This Wednesday is also #IWSG day!

Often I get stuck in my writing or start to feel less than confident with a current WIP. That’s when I like to pick up a book that will entertain me without making me feel guilty for not working on my own project. I am a sucker for any book with the word “bones” in the title. 

Admittedly, Kathy Reichs cornered the market with the television series BONES, and her novel Flash and Bones is high on my reading list. At the top of that list is Keri Hulme’s The Bone People, but several other authors with “bones” novels have also entertained me over the years. 

My A-list of “bones” books includes
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold,
heralded by the Chicago Tribune as saying
“. . . there are more important things in life than retribution.
Like forgiveness, like love.” 

Jan Burke’s Bones: An Irene Kelly Mystery offers a controversial story that moves forward at a steady pace. The Bone Collector: The First Lincoln Rhyme Novel made best-seller Jeffrey Deaver a favorite on many lists. The kindle edition is scheduled for release in May, 2014. Winter’s Bone by Daniel Woodrell offers a look at poverty in the Ozarks that gives me a chill even now. 

Other guilt-free favorites are:
Bag of Bones by Stephen King
City of Bones (A Harry Bosch Novel) by Michael Connelly
The Bone Garden by Tess Gerritsen 

At a book sale, I came across Bones: A Forensic Detective’s Casebook by Dr. Douglas Uberlaker that demonstrates how bones can speak for the dead. It is a good reference book for mystery writers.

What is your favorite “BONES” title?



  1. "The Lovely Bones" is my favorite title, but I really, really hated the end of the movie (can't speak for the book).

    I can't really describe why without spoilers though, sorry. ^^;

    Alex Hurst, fantasy author in Japan. "B is for Books" is my current post.

  2. I have a Kathy Reich's novel sitting on my shelves, but haven't cracked it open yet. I do love the TV series though. :)

  3. I'm so glad you reminded me of Jan Burke's books, I read one that was fantastic, forget the name now. I will pick up some more. The Lovely Bones was a very good book.

  4. never knew there were so many bones
    how about the Lovely Bones? oh, i see someone beat me to that one!

    i love reviews - glad i stopped by!
    happy b day!

  5. All these books are amazing-- I'm into horror from time to time, and I remember each of these with fondness.

    Damyanti Co-host, A to Z Challenge 2014

    Twitter: @damyantig

  6. Now I'm curious, Alex, because I don't remember the ending of the movie The Lovely Bones!

    Nicole, Kathy Reichs is a better anthropologist than a writer, but the plots she writes about are informative and entertaining.

    Inger, I've read most of Jan Burke's novels. 5-stars for most of them.

    Tara, you are in good company, seems most people love the book The Lovely Bones.

  7. I think the only 'bones' related book I've read is Funny Bones to my kids ... cute stories, and my boys love reciting the begging "It was a dark dark night, in a dark dark town ..."

    I wouldn't feel too guilty about taking a break from a project to read, after all, it will strengthen your own writing.

    Good luck with your April literary endeavors.

    Clare Dugmore Writes

  8. I agree, Clare, reading does strengthen a writer's work. Stephen King said if you don't read, you can't write. I agree with that also.

  9. Yes, anything with "Bone" in the title attracts me right away! I think my fav is The Bone Collector.
    (new follower)
    Lexa Cain’s Blog

  10. Bag of Bones is one of my favorites. Great theme!

    Thanks for stopping by the Untethered Realms blog today! :)

  11. Wow. I don't think I've ever read anything with bones in the title before!

    However, I have a couple bone stories due to studying forensic anthro-- I have touched and handled human bones before! Not everyone can say that, I think.

    I had a roommate who was a bio anthro major and she had a full real skeleton in her closet. She'd take it out to show and tell during parties we hosted.

    Yeah. I'm a little weird I guess... and so are my friends...

  12. I have to agree with other commenters; The Lovely Bones was a showstopper of a novel. Beautiful writing + compelling themes= :)
    City of Bones, which I just finished, was disappointing to me ... such a pretty cover, such a fascinating story world, but ultimately the characters just didn't grab me. Maybe that's a YA thing though.
    I must think upon other Bones titles now. What a fun brain teaser!

  13. Excellent question! I'm a huge fan of Reich and Deaver! But if I had to chose my favourite 'Bones' title, I'd have to go with either Tess Gerritsen's The Bone Garden, or The Bone Parade by Mark Nykanen.

  14. Lexa, The Bone Collector really sticks with me. It was one of the first Jeffrey Deaver books I read. Thank you for following my blog.

  15. Raquel, I don't know very many people who have touched real bones, and no one who has a real skeleton in their closet! Great conversation piece.

    City of Bones is a new title for me, Kirsten. I'll have to check that out.

    Julianne, you got me with The Bone Parade, also. So many titles, so little time!

  16. Hi Gail .. I've read one or two of the Kathy Reich books and loved them - but I don't think we've had the tv series over here .. but I could easily have missed it!

    Bones we had a series titled "Cold Cases" where they looked at skeletons and found out where they came from, what they ate etc etc .. I wrote about one of the Cases - Stirling Castle Skeletons - as it had lots of history, apart from the bone investigation and was totally fascinated by it ..

    Thanks for popping by my C - crumbling cliffs ... and re that thank goodness it was nature destroying our coast and not bombs or rebel armies ... cheers Hilary

  17. Love reading books related to bones!

  18. I'm ashamed to say I haven't read any of these, but I did used to watch Bones on TV. Does that count? LOL

    Thanks for visiting my blog. :)
    IWSG #243, until Alex culls the list again.

  19. I'll have to go with "Bones" the tv show because I tried to read Kathy and couldn't get through it. Just wasn't my thing, but I love the show! Also, I haven't read any of the other titles you wrote about except for The Lovely Bones, and there, I got too caught up in reading it as a mother to a lovely daughter and it was too close to home for me to go there.

  20. I will warn you Gail that The Bone Parade is extremely dark!

  21. What are the chances we like the Bones television series better because of Booth's character?

  22. My fave Bone title is the Bone Shaker, a steampunk novel with zombies that I just love.

    I am a huge fan of the Bones series. I could never pick a favorite character LOL I love them all.


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