TITLE: Bone to Pick
Author: TA Moore
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Characters: Cloister Witte and Javi Merlo
Cloister Witte is a man with a dark past and a cute dog. He’s happy to talk about the dog all day, but after growing up in the shadow of a missing brother, a deadbeat dad, and a criminal stepfather, he’d rather leave the past back in Montana. These days he’s a K-9 officer in the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department and pays a tithe to his ghosts by doing what no one was able to do for his brother—find the missing and bring them home.
He’s good at solving difficult mysteries. The dog is even better.
This time the missing person is a ten-year-old boy who walked into the woods in the middle of the night and didn’t come back. With the antagonistic help of distractingly handsome FBI agent Javi Merlo, it quickly becomes clear that Drew Hartley didn’t run away. He was taken, and the evidence implies he’s not the kidnapper’s first victim. As the search intensifies, old grudges and tragedies are pulled into the light of day. But with each clue they uncover, it looks less and less likely that Drew will be found alive.
Bone to Pick is a great mystery that is sure to pull readers in from the beginning. Both the main characters are in law enforcement, one local and one federal. Cloister is a K-9 police officer with a lot of baggage. When the story opens he is taking down a druggie. The author does an excellent job with the opening scenes and not only did it pull me into the story, it brought to mind episodes of COPS or PD Live. I did have to laugh a time or two, especially when the meth head thought he saw a bear.
Cloister is pulled from his usual shift when a call comes in about a missing boy. Arriving in Plenty, Cloister runs into Javi Merlo, an FBI agent he has history with. There is a tension between the two men that will leave the reader wondering what went down between the two men. I really liked the way the author handled the romance between the two men. While the author could have easily had their relationship be one that developed fast and with little conflict, she did not do so. Instead, the relationship between them is rocky at times and I wondered if there would even be an HEA for them. This really added to the story and was one of the things that kept me turning the pages.
The mystery that is woven throughout Bone to Pick is one that really had me guessing. I have to say, I spent a lot of time changing my mind about who the bad guy was. I think the readers will be just as surprised by the way this part of the book plays out. For me, it was a toss-up as to which I enjoyed more the romance or the mystery.
I will be looking out for more from this author and hope that there will be more books with these two main characters.
Reviewed By: Lydia
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