When Gwen Marcey’s dog comes home with a human skull and then leads her to a cabin in the woods near her Montana home, she realizes there’s a serial killer in her community. And when she finds a tortured young girl clinging to life on the cabin floor, she knows this killer is a lunatic.
Yet what unsettles Gwen most is that the victim looks uncannily like her daughter.
The search for the torturer leads back in time to a neo-Nazi bombing in Washington state—a bombing with only one connection to Montana: Gwen. The group has a race-not-grace model of salvation . . . and they’ve marked Gwen as a race traitor.
When it becomes clear that the killer has a score to settle, Gwen finds herself in a battle against time. She will have to use all of her forensic skills to find the killer before he can carry out his threat to destroy her—and the only family she has left.
Carrie Stuart Parks and Rick Parks met in the romantic hallways of the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. They married in nineteen eighty-nine and formed a dynamic and successful team in their fine and forensic art, working on major national and international cases and creating exquisite watercolors and stone carvings. They travel internationally, teaching forensic art to a variety of participants: from the Secret Service to the FBI, from large law enforcement agencies to the smallest two-man departments in their one-week classes. They welcome civilian artists to attend their courses as well. Carrie has won numerous awards for her innovative teaching methods and general career excellence and is a signature member of the Idaho Watercolor Society. Rick has received national recognition for his exquisite art placed on musical instruments.
Carrie began her fiction writing career while battling breast cancer. Mentored by NY Times bestselling author, Frank Peretti, Carrie’s debut novel garnered immediate interest by major publishing houses and landed her a three book deal at HarperCollins Christian.
I first learned of Carrie Stuart Parks from all the positive buzz her debut novel, A Cry from The Dust, garnered. That book was a hit with me, so I jumped at the chance her publisher offered to read and review book 2 in the Gwen Marcey series, The Bones Will Speak. In Gwen, Parks has created the ideal character — smart, gutsy, flawed and vulnerable. This one merits a highly recommended read from me.
A year has passed since Gwen’s deadly encounter with a home-grown terrorist group. Stronger physically and spiritually, Gwen is ready to get back to work, yet forensic art jobs still prove to be elusive. When she discovers a missing girl and the dump site of a serial killer, her work becomes a bit too personal. Determined to stay in charge of her life, Gwen battles fears, phobias and unforgiveness and fights to discover the identity of the killer before she becomes one of his victims.
The Bones Will Speak has a great plot –a serial killer targeting young girls that look like Gwen’s daughter; a cat-and-mouse game with lots of suspicious actors. The action is fast-paced, and the twists and turns left this reader holding her breath and hanging on to her seat. But the real strength of this book is the characterization. Gwen is the perfect heroine for a suspense novel. Her first person account offers a real understanding of what makes Gwen tick. She is definitely not perfect, but she is astute and honest and a determined mama-bear when those she loves are in danger. Supporting characters are also well-developed and are revealed in Gwen’s thoughts and the third person accounts when Gwen is not present. Forensic art and murder investigations are the vehicle for the story line, so the reader should expect some gritty scenes detailing crime scenes. Gwen doesn’t just draw composites; she gets her hands dirty. The spiritual thread is subtly woven throughout The Bones Will Speak. Gwen has come a long way from book 1, but her struggle with forgiveness compared and contrasted with the killer’s twisted version of justice shows the destructive nature of holding on to perceived hurts.
If you are a fan of CSI or the novels of Stephen James and Brandilyn Collins, then The Bones Will Speak is a perfect fit for you. Be sure to read A Cry from The Dust first, though. You do not want to miss any of this outstanding series.
Great for Book Clubs.
To purchase this book, click HERE.
(Thanks to Booklook Bloggers for a review copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)