Field of Bones: J.A. Jance
Someone’s past as a child brings out the hate and destruction in the present as the anger he still feels from a childhood that was filled with abuse, neglect and fear turns him into a monster in the present. A father who used him as a punching bag and a mother who stood silent the result is a sadistic serial killer who preys on young woman.
As the sheriff of Cochise County Joanna Brady never thought she would take on this job after her father passed away. Now running again the election up in the air she winds up giving birth to her daughter and learns about the win from someone else. But, murder and kidnapping don’t stop for the birth of a child and the sad part is that before is said and done Joanna and her deputy sheriff will be tested to the limited.
As she becomes adjusted to staying home and focusing on her son and daughter she learns about something that will rock the core of her County and draw many into an investigation that will yield a Field of Bones that will take extraordinary manpower, several agencies and test the abilities of her department and her hoping to stop something brought to her attention by a young poacher named Jake.
When Jake brings in a human skull and the detectives canvas where it was found the startling realization is finding more skeletons and a the body of a young girl that was frozen.
Enter the basement of the man calling himself The Boss who starved theses young girls, chained them so they could barely move and often left them alone for days the end result was their horrific deaths at the hand of a sick and demented killer. The author takes us back to learn how he assumed the identity of his half brother and how he attained his wealth. His brother was the unsuspecting victim of a brother who hated his existence and who resented being mistreated all of his life. With a mother who chose everyone over him lashes out his anger at young women as if he’s killing his mother over and over again. Destroying the dignity of these young girls is as if it’s his mother.
Tom Hadlock is handling things for Joanna until things get tense and someone leaks information to the press and it’s time to bring in a profiler. Added in the ME identified the body of one victim and alerting the aunt she was able to learn what happened to Amelia and things escalated from this point on.
Latisha is alone and afraid as the Boss returns drunk and demands she performs but he’s asleep, she escapes and the chase is in but Garth Raymond is quick, smart yet the Boss injured him and Latisha manages to take matters in hand.
Safe at last the team now under Joanna’s direction alerts the profiler, the ME, detective Deb Howell lead detective and her team, as they once again need to be briefed.
Identifying the killer and getting the names of the other victims would they catch this guy before he disappear? With Joanna at the helm and Haddock dealing with the possible crime scene location and Garth in the hospital there are questions to be asked and answers needed.
Latisha’s parents coming to get her and learning a partial truth what will happen when they are told what she went through?
The chase to get the killer and the end result will shock readers as this dangerous man is in the wind but Joanna had her team and plan to take him down but will it happen? There’s a leak somewhere and the reporter named Marliss got the wrath of Joanna and the informant well met his match. With her parents there and hope for her recovery this brave young teen never falters and just wants to understand what happened, why and pray for the victims.
Teamwork is what the sheriff hoped would bring this man down and Hidalgo’s longtime sheriff, Randy Trotter came to her rescue. As the author once again gives us the back-story about him.
Author J.A. Jance adds something unique to this story as she allows readers to get inside the minds of the characters by flashing back to their pasts and having us hear their voices explaining how they became who they are today, what caused the victims to wind up in the prison created by a sick monster and the voice of this monster trying to rationalize his actions. But, a powerful voice comes from Joanna herself as she reads her father’s journals and learns how he came to become a sheriff and now she has to live with his past but move ahead by dispelling the ghosts that plague her present. Butch, her husband has his own story and becoming a best selling author takes him away for periods of time and you wonder is this is his way of creating who he is and developing better self-esteem because of the respect Joanna yields from the people she serves. These powerful short bios help the reader understand each character and hearing the voices of the victims will bring tears to your eyes and alert young girls not to fall prey to men who claim they want to help them get ahead, take them for a lonely ride and uses them for their own sick purposes. The issue of sexual exploitation is paramount in this story and young girls, teens and even runaways need to heed the warning within the pages of this story.
When Marliss finds her way to the Justice Center and it’s empty, she finds her way to the hospital and what Joanna does is priceless as she puts this reporter in her place and hopefully she’ll stay there. But, she’s relentless as the sheriff explains what will happen if she interferes with the investigation and dares to publish events prematurely.
Things get tense and the killer is loose and Latisha needs comforting making her feel safe as the explosive ending comes to a crashing close. Will the killer be stopped?
Fear begins to build up and a killer is on the loose but the reporter seems to be bent on getting a story and has no empathy for the victims or what happened to an officer just doing his job and protecting someone. A chance encounter brings Garth together with one of the victims but the killer is not far away and the end result just might be tragic.
How many more bodies will the cadaver dogs find? Author J. A. Jance brings to light the serious issue of sexual abuse, immoral acts of violence, anger, betrayal, identity takeover, retribution in the killer’s mind for his past as the final outcome is tragic and the end result when all of the victims are accounted for are several became as the title states part of a Field of Bones. Sometimes we cannot reconcile what happens in our past and deal with our future and we let the past dictate our actions.
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ network/MJ Magazine