The Bones of You by Debbie Howells

bonesofyouThe Andersons are the perfect family. Loving father, devoted wife, impeccably behaved daughters. Then Rosie, their older daughter, goes missing, only to be found murdered. The perfect image of their lives begins to unravel, leading to deep secrets no one is prepared to learn.

The Bones of You
by Debbie Howells
Kensington Books
July 2015

Kate learns that Rosie is missing from her friend Jo, Rosie’s mother.  In an effort to be supportive, Kate reaches out to a woman she only knows on the surface.   Kate finds herself drawn into the mystery surrounding Rosie’s death, only later to be shocked by the truth.

This novel is another entry into the category of flashback novels.  They story alternates between Kate’s present and the deceased Rosie’s past musings.  It is, sadly, a poor man’s The Lovely Bones.

I could never really get into any of Kate’s chapters.  I kept waiting for her to develop as a character, to become more than what she does.  She starts naive, trusting, unsure that what she’s learning is real.  She ends naive, trusting, unsure that what she’s learned is real.   She never develops and excuses the killer’s behavior in the end (no spoilers, I promise!).

Rosie’s chapters are better.  Unfortunately, these chapters make the disparity between the two characters even more painfully evident.  It’s almost like two different people were writing the book.  Where Kate never really changes, Rosie (albeit dead) develops and grows into her own through her narrative.

In the end, save the time.  Read The Lovely Bones instead.   This novel, sadly, left me feeling quite flat.

Robin Gwaro is the Young Adult and Women’s Literature Editor at She currently spends her days wrangling her 8 year old science nerd and 10 month old busy body.

This book was provided by the publisher as a review copy.