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2021 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama
- Alaska
- Arizona (1)
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- California (4)
- Colorado (1)
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- *Washington, D.C.

International:
Australia (2)
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The Philippines (1)
Wales (1)

My Progress:


28 / 51 states. 55% done!

2021 Fall Into Reading Challenge

My Progress:


0 / 24 books. 0% done!

2021 Children's Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

2021 Children's Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
(Hosted by Yours Truly!)

My Progress:


7 / 25 books. 28% done!

2021 Popsugar Reading Challenge

My Progress:


33 / 50 books. 66% done!

Booklist Queen's 2021 Reading Challenge

My Progress:


35 / 52 books. 67% done!

2021 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

2021 Craving for Cozies Reading Challenge

The 52 Club's 2021 Reading Challenge

My Progress:


39 / 52 books. 75% done!
Saturday, April 04, 2020

Second Installment of Cadaver Dog Mystery Series Not Quite As Enjoyable As First

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

(Note:  Although this review will not contain spoilers for The Secrets of Bones, it may inadvertently reveal plot surprises from its predecessor, The Scent of Murder.  As always, I recommend reading books in a series in order.)

Although Jazz Ramsey makes her living as an administrative assistant at St. Catherine's Preparatory Academy for Girls, her real passion is training cadaver dogs.  As the school embarks on its annual career day, in which local women visit campus to teach the students about their jobs, Jazz is asked to showcase her work with the animals.  To give the girls an exciting demo, she hides a bone in an unused attic space.  Her audience is delighted when Gus finds it easily; they're all shocked, however, when he scents human remains that were not hidden by Jazz.  When a skeleton is recovered from its hiding place in the attic, Jazz gets an even bigger surprise—the bones appear to belong to a fanatical religion teacher who mysteriously resigned from her job three years ago.  

Bernadette Quinn was almost universally disliked by St. Catherine's student body, administration, and presumably everyone who knew her.  Still, who would murder the pious teacher?  When the police zero in on Sister Eileen, Jazz refuses to stand by and let her beloved boss's name get dragged through the mud.  If the authorities are too inept to find the real killer, she'll launch her own investigation.  The more she digs, the closer Jazz gets to shocking secrets someone doesn't want revealed.  It soon becomes obvious that someone will stop at nothing to stop her from digging.  Can Jazz find the murderer before she becomes the next victim?

I enjoyed The Scent of Murder, the first installment in Kylie Logan's Jazz Ramsey mystery series, so I was eager to read the second, The Secrets of Bones (available May 5, 2020).  While I ended up enjoying the former more than the latter, I still found The Secrets of Bones to be intriguing and entertaining.  Jazz is a likable character, as are her canine companions.  It's always interesting to see working dogs in action; in fact, I wanted more of that in this installment.  As far as the mystery goes, I saw some of the plot twists coming, but not all of them.  There were a few plot holes that didn't get tied up satisfactorily to me.  In addition, I wanted more personality from Nick, Jazz's love interest.  Overall, then, I didn't love The Secrets of Bones.  Still, it was engaging and entertaining enough to convince me to keep with the series.  I just hope the next installment is a little tighter, with a stronger emphasis on Jazz's work as a cadaver dog trainer.

(Readalikes:  The Scent of Murder by Kylie Logan; also reminds me of A Borrowing of Bones by Paula Munier)

Grade:


If this were a movie, it would be rated:


for language (no F-bombs), violence, innuendo, and disturbing subject matter

To the FTC, with love:  I received an e-ARC of The Secrets of Bones from the lovely folks at Macmillan via those at Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!
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The Gold in These Hills by Joanne Bischof

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Glass Houses by Louise Penny



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