Dry Bones in the Valley: Book summary and reviews of Dry Bones in the Valley by Tom Bouman

Dry Bones in the Valley

by Tom Bouman

Dry Bones in the Valley by Tom Bouman
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  • Published in USA  Jul 2014
    288 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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Book Summary

In Wild Thyme, Pennsylvania, secrets and feuds go back generations.

In Wild Thyme, Pennsylvania, secrets and feuds go back generations. The lone policeman in a small township on the sparse northern border, Henry Farrell expected to spend his mornings hunting and fishing, his evenings playing old-time music. Instead, he has watched the steady encroachment of gas drilling bring new wealth and erode neighborly trust. The drug trade is pushing heroin into the territory. There are outlaws cooking meth in the woods, guys Henry grew up with. When a stranger turns up dead, Henry's search for the killer will open old wounds, dredge up ancient crimes, and exact a deadly price.

With vivid characters and flawless pacing, Tom Bouman immerses readers in rural northeastern Pennsylvania, a region in the grip of change. In these derelict woods full of whitetail deer and history, the hunt is on.

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Book Awards

  • award image Edgar Awards, 2015

Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. [An] outstanding debut… Henry's growth from a grief-stricken widower to a lawman with an inner resolve fuels the brisk plot, as does an evocative look at a changing landscape." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Bouman's debut shows rural noir at its finest: a poetically written mystery about a man struggling with his inner demons and an area of great natural beauty few had heard of before the natural gas boom." - Kirkus

"A dark ending unearths a long-held secret but leaves enough ambiguity to suggest plenty of tales to tell in future installments. A strong debut for readers who like their woods dark and deep." - Booklist

"A tough, edgy thriller that asks hard questions about the destruction of our environment, our local communities, and our families. Readers of smart literary thrillers are going to love this novel. I wish like hell that my name were on the cover." - Wiley Cash, New York Times best-selling author of A Land More Kind Than Home

"Raymond Chandler said that Hammett took murder away from the manor houses and gave it back to the people who actually commit it. Tom Bouman continues that tradition. Bouman's story is deceptively simple, layered with history, bearing the promise of lightness, of redemption." - James Sallis, author of Drive

"Tom Bouman is a remarkable new voice in contemporary fiction. Dry Bones in the Valley is a tightly crafted piece of rural noir that seems pulled from the earth itself, a profound look at the dark corners of rural America. Readers of Daniel Woodrell and Donald Ray Pollock will find much to love." - Steve Weddle, author of Country Hardball

"It's a mystery, yes, but it's also a love story between a man and the land and people he knows like the back of his hand. Dry Bones in the Valley is a gorgeous, lived-in novel, and Bouman's turns of phrase are chest-clutching in their beauty." - Hannah Pittard, author of The Fates Will Find Their Way

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Tom Bouman is a former book editor and musician who lives with his wife and daughter in northeastern Pennsylvania.

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