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The Bone Garden by Tess Gerritsen

I've read all the books in Tess Gerritsen's Dr. Maura Isles (an M.E. for Boston) and Det. Jane Rizzoli series. The series focusses on two women who solve mysteries and fight crime; books in the series tend to take turns on who is the focus of the action. For example, one book might have Isles at center stage, while the next one has Rizzoli at center stage. The Bone Garden, Gerritsen's most recent book, is actually a stand alone novel, though it does feature a cameo appearance by Isles at the beginning of the book.

The action flips back and forth between the present and 1830. In the present a woman named Julia is trying to fit together the pieces of a hundred year old series of murders and solve the mystery of the old bones found buried in the back yard of her new house. The majority of the action takes place in 1830 in Boston where the aforementioned series of murders is in full swing; it is up to two medical students and a recent Irish immigrant to Boston named Rose to solve the murders.

The novel is fast paced and a quick read of a page turner. There are also parallel love stories woven throughout the present and the past parts of the story. While the love story that takes place in the past is well developed and adds to the drama, the love story that takes place in the present seems superficial and out of place because we spend so little time with the story in the present. In the end we are not as invested with the characters that populate the present as we are with those that populate 1830 Boston. This is a good read for any fan of Tess Gerritsen as well as those who enjoy historical mysteries.

This book is available upstairs in adult fiction at Fic/Ger; it is currently shelved in New Arrivals section next to the water fountain. It is also available upon request from Annville Free Library, Lebanon Community Library, Myerstown Community Library, and Palmyra Public Library.

--reviewed by Ms. Angie

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