The Bones of Paris

The Bones of Paris

A Novel of Suspense

Book - 2013
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Random House, Inc.

New York Times bestselling author Laurie R. King, beloved for her acclaimed Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series, consistently writes richly detailed and thoroughly suspenseful novels that bring a distant time and place to brilliant life. Now, in this thrilling new book, King leads readers into the vibrant and sensual Paris of the Jazz Age—and reveals the darkest secrets of its denizens.

Paris, France: September 1929. For Harris Stuyvesant, the assignment is a private investigator’s dream—he’s getting paid to prowl the cafés and bars of Montparnasse, looking for a pretty young woman. The American agent has a healthy appreciation forla vie de bohème, despite having worked for years at the U.S. Bureau of Investigation. The missing person in question is Philippa Crosby, a twenty-two year old from Boston who has been living in Paris, modeling and acting. Her family became alarmed when she stopped all communications, and Stuyvesant agreed to track her down. He wholly expects to find her in the arms of some up-and-coming artist, perhaps experimenting with the decadent lifestyle that is suddenly available on everyrue and boulevard.

As Stuyvesant follows Philippa’s trail through the expatriate community of artists and writers, he finds that she is known to many of its famous—and infamous—inhabitants, from Shakespeare and Company’s Sylvia Beach to Ernest Hemingway to the Surrealist photographer Man Ray. But when the evidence leads Stuyvesant to the Théâtre du Grand-Guignol in Montmartre, his investigation takes a sharp, disturbing turn. At the Grand-Guignol, murder, insanity, and sexual perversion are all staged to shocking, brutal effect: depravity as art, savage human nature on stage.

Soon it becomes clear that one missing girl is a drop in the bucket. Here, amid the glittering lights of the cabarets, hides a monster whose artisticcoup de grâce is to be rendered in blood. And Stuyvesant will have to descend into the darkest depths of perversion to find a killer . . . sifting throughThe Bones of Paris.

Praise for The Bones of Paris

“Haunting . . . a portrait of the City of Light that glows with the fires of Hell.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch

“A compelling thriller . . . complex, more than a little kinky, and absolutely fascinating.”Booklist (starred review)

“Highly entertaining . . . Laurie R. King perfectly captures [the Jazz Age] as she explores the City of Light’s avenues and alleys.”—The Denver Post

“Engrossing . . . Readers who enjoy Laurie R. King’s noteworthy Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes mystery series are in for a surprise.”BookPage

“A chilling mystery and a haunting love letter to the Paris of Hemingway’s Lost Generation.”—Library Journal

Baker & Taylor
Investigating the disappearance of an American girl who may be one of several abductees linked to a series of murders, Harris Stuyvesant, a former officer of the American Bureau of Investigation, follows clues to an American expat community in 1929 Paris, where he encounters dangerous adversaries and famous historical artists.

Publisher: New York : Bantam Books, [2013]
Edition: First Edition
ISBN: 9780345531766
Branch Call Number: M KING 2013
Characteristics: 412 pages ; 25 cm


From the critics

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Jan 17, 2019

Barely made it to pAge 150. Slow moving, could not feel anything (empathy, dislike, or like) for the characters.

Oct 12, 2018

I only made it 140 pages. The writing style was bland and it seemed to be going nowhere, so I gave up.

Sep 29, 2018

I quite agree with the suggestion that this book be reclassified as "Horror" rather than "Mystery". It is slow moving and could have used a heavy edit. More importantly, as it is set in Paris, there is a considerable amount of French in the dialog that is mostly translated into English. However, the French is truly execrable and could have used a good French editor. Anyone with high school French could have corrected the agreements, tense, choice of verbs and vocabulary. Much of the French appears to be an on-line translation (and we know how good those are!) of the original line as written in English. I found it extremely distracting in an otherwise interesting book. I do, however, prefer her Sherlock Holmes/Mary Russel series.

Jun 19, 2015

this is NOT a cheery read. It is dark and atmospheric and a bit slow-moving at times - as another reader said, I often skimmed large segments in order to get to some action. You cannot be a squeamish person to get into this book but all in all, I recommend it. I prefer the Mary Russell novels I think.

May 18, 2014

Move over Stephen King: another King has joined the shelf of horror novels on the 'King' author' shelf. Laurie R. King's novel, The Bones of Paris, needs to be categorized in the "Horror" section, rather than as a "Mystery".

Jul 25, 2013

If you are a big fan of King's Sherlock Holmes series, as I am, put aside all preconceived notions before reading her latest novel. This book couldn't be more different. Set in 1920's Paris, we follow Harris Stuyvesant, an American PI, as he attempts to solve a missing persons case. Pip Crosby, a young american dedicated to new experiences, has not been seen for several months & her family is desperate for news. Harris once spent 5 days getting to know her very well & the case becomes personal. While searching, he comes into contact with the thriving art scene & Paris' seedy underground. Real life characters like Man Ray & Hemmingway are part of that community & things soon take on a creepy undertone as bones start to appear with alarming frequency. This is a slow moving story & the author writes every scene with much detail. At times, I found myself skimming to get to a point where something happened. If you hang in there, the pay off comes in the last quarter of the book, with a truly horrific resolution. Harris is a really interesting character with many demons & the author does an admirable job of recreating the atmosphere of a post war Paris inundated with americans & others, all looking for a good time. Just be prepared for a slow, thorough read unlike anything you've previously read by Ms. King. I would definitely read a sequel featuring Harris, hopefully one with a bit more action or a tighter edit but that's just a matter of taste.


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