Pages: 401 pgs.
Finished: Dec. 17, 2009
First Published: Apr. 14, 2009 (paperback Feb. 23, 2010)
Genre: thriller, christian fiction?
The day that Ryan Evans' world forever changed began as any other day he'd spent in the hot desert might have done.
Acquired: Received a review copy from Hachette Book Group.
Reason for Reading: The publisher's description of this serial killer thriller was right up my alley.
Summary: The BoneMan kidnapped and brutally murdered six girl's by breaking every single bone in their body. He was arrested and sent to prison but there was always a feeling by some that the wrong man had been convicted. Two years later on a technicality the prisoner is released and at the same time Ryan Evans, Intelligence Officer, returns home from a gruelling POW capture in the desert. The murder's start again and when Ryan's own estranged daughter is kidnapped the FBI start seeing all evidence pointing towards Ryan himself but Ryan has received a message from the real BoneMan and Ryan must do what he says to save his daughter's life.
Comments: All I can say is wow, wow, WOW! An amazing serial killer thriller. I loved it! A page-turner with gruesome details that never quite goes over into goriness used by some other authors. The back of the book tells me this is Ted Dekker's 23rd book and I ask myself "Why am I only reading him now?" In fact, I'd never heard of him before this book came out. I feel like I've just discovered a treasure chest, if Dekker's other work is anywhere near as engrossing as this one is I've got a lot of reading ahead of me!
The story is fast-paced and never lets up, some of the scenes are a little beyond believability but I chalked it up to an Intelligence Officer being overly intelligent and perhaps overly lucky. There's no sense picking apart a thriller like this when you are on a wild ride of tension. Ryan's character is fully fleshed out and we come to understand and feel for him. The secondary characters are less realized though they do not play emotionally integral parts to the plot. The bad guy is bad, pure evil, and this is one thing I particularly like in thrillers. There are no grey areas as to who is evil. The fight of good vs evil is very clear, as in a Dean Koontz novel.
And mentioning Dean Koontz, I'd like to comment on the Christian Fiction aspect of this novel. Never having read anything else by Dekker I can't comment on him yet, as an author, but on this book alone, if that tag bothers you, don't let it. Likening this book to Christian Fiction would be the same as likening Dean Koontz to Catholic Fiction. (Koontz is Catholic and his books contain many Catholic themes, if you know to look for them) There is a Biblical theme behind the killer's motive (very common in thrillers) and the main character believes in God, thus there are some Christian elements/quotes in the story. Of course, I am a Christian and none of this stood out to me but I had no idea I was reading Christian Fiction until I looked up the amazon link and saw all the CF tags and checked out his other books and found that he was a popular CF author!
A fabulous book, thriller readers should not miss out on this one, and you can be sure you will be seeing more Ted Dekker reviews from me in the future.