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Bones: An Alex Delaware Novel    by Jonathan Kellerman order for
by Jonathan Kellerman
Order:  USA  Can
Ballantine, 2008 (2008)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Dr. Alex Delaware, created by Jonathan Kellerman, is once again working as a consultant with his homicide detective friend Milo Sturgis on a murder case. Moe, a rookie to the homicide division, is introduced in this novel. He is a welcome addition.

A spooky phone call to L.A.'s Bird Marsh leads the team to the body of a woman with a hand missing. Forensic anthropologists find three more bodies, each missing a hand, in the same area. It's no great stretch to realize they are looking for a serial killer. Tracing the identity of the decomposed corpses taxes their skills. Three of the women were prostitutes, while one was a concert pianist.

Learning more about the pianist, the trio is thrust into the high end of L.A., with gated communities and estate managers. Dealing with this group of the rich and privileged slows them down some, but eventually justice reigns. Well, maybe not. But the best conclusion for all concerned seems to be the end result.

Kellerman's work flows so well that the reader can progress from chapter to chapter without any questions over plot or characters or even place. He uses his skills as a clinical psychologist to delve into the minds and hearts of his characters. He peels layers away to reveal the persons beneath. Milo, a very complex individual, is portrayed by Kellerman with just the right amount of angst as well as human compassion. As usual in an Alex Delaware mystery, Bones is an excellent read.

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