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Spooktacular Book Review: All the Pretty Bones

BonesCoverHappy Halloween! I hope your day is filled with some truly creepy (but yet awesome) reading. If you’re looking for a fitting book to read today, I’d like to share one of my recent favorites with you. All the Pretty Bones.

Now, full disclosure: I edited this book. You have absolutely no reason to believe me about how good this book is other than this one: I’m telling you now that I’ve edited a fair number of books in my time and I don’t talk about most of them. That doesn’t mean the other books I’ve edited aren’t good. I think there are excellent things about every book I’ve touched. (Wow, that sounds kind of conceited. But really. It’s true.) All the Pretty Bones, though, is different. And so is its author: Camela Thompson.

I loved this book from the first time I got my hands on it. I couldn’t put it down. You see, this isn’t your typical vampire book. There are no sparkling, perfect, good vampires here. Lucian isn’t noble. He doesn’t act out of a desire to right wrongs or make society better. He’s out for number one: Lucian.

I’m a fan of books with strong female protagonists and Olivia Kardos is about the strongest woman I’ve ever “met.” When the book opens, she’s dying. Diagnosed with terminal cancer, she’s left with one shattering realization: she’ll never get to do most of what she wants to do in her life and a large part of the reason for that isn’t the cancer. No. It’s her stalker: Mark Porter.

Faced with what many would consider their worst nightmare, Olivia doesn’t run and hide. She doesn’t wallow in self-pity. She doesn’t even go home and eat all the ice cream. Olivia comes to a decision: Mark Porter must die.

All the Pretty Bones takes us through one woman’s desperate struggle to reclaim a small bit of her life before the end by going against what society tells her to do. She fights back.

As if that weren’t enough, there’s one other main component of the story. All around Seattle, women who look like Olivia are being killed. Sean Howard, Olivia’s former boyfriend, is a cop and he’s investigating these murders. Every time he sees a victim, he’s reminded of Olivia. What connection do these victims have to the ‘one that got away’?

Filled with the tension of the chase, Olivia’s fight for her life, Lucian’s inexplicable pull to help her, even though it could mean his death, and Sean’s conflicting emotions over a woman he cannot have, All the Pretty Bones is a book that will stay with you for long after you put it down.

Camela Thompson writes with a depth of emotion and sense for pacing that few can muster. When Olivia was suffering through her illness, I felt it. When Mark Porter was giving in to his rage, I felt it. When Lucian’s anguish over his decision to help Olivia reached its peak, I felt it. It’s rare to connect with every major character in a book. In most good books, there are one or two who stand out. In All the Pretty Bones, I felt close to every single character. I lived through their highs and lows and I’d do it again, even though I know what happens.

Set in Seattle, All the Pretty Bones should make it to the top of your vampire-fiction list. It’s a stellar, one-of-a-kind thriller that will leave you up until the wee hours wanting to know what happens next.

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