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Valley of Bones (Jimmy Paz)


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About the Author

New York Times bestselling author Michael Gruber is the author of five acclaimed novels. He lives in Seattle.


When a Sudanese oil baron is thrown to his death from his hotel balcony, Miami detective Jimmy Paz finds a mysterious woman named Emmylou Dideroff vehemently praying at the scene of the crime; she quickly becomes the main suspect. The plot immediately thickens as Emmylou begins to write a lengthy confession about her disturbing childhood, how she reformed from a criminal to a woman of God, and what led her to the Miami hotel room that day. Is she crazy or does God really speak to her? Jimmy and criminal psychologist Lorna Wise investigate and are thrown into a whirlwind journey involving prostitution, white supremacists, the Sudanese civil war, and massive government cover-ups. Occasionally overwhelming, the story's strong religious overtones are presented philosophically and poignantly throughout. Reader Nick Sullivan does a marvelous job of juggling voices and providing believable accents for numerous characters. Highly recommended for all audiobook collections.-Jesse M. Light, Memorial Hall Lib., Andover, MA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Gruber's new mystery/thriller more than fulfills the promise of his dazzling Tropic of Night (2003), a critical and commercial success and his first book published under his own name. The story emerges from three directions: the POV of Cuban-American Miami cop Jimmy Paz; pages from the book Faithful Unto Death: The Story of the Nursing Sisters of the Blood of Christ by Sr. Benedicta Cooley; and a series of handwritten notebooks, The Confessions of Emmylou Dideroff. Gruber brings back Paz ("a neatly built, caramel-colored man, in a beautifully cut gray-green silk and linen suit" and one of the smartest, coolest, most intriguing cops working the pages of American thrillers these days) from Tropic to investigate the death of Arab oil trader Jabir Akran al-Muwalid, who's been bonked on the head with a piston rod and thrown off the balcony of his hotel room. Inside al-Muwalid's room, Paz finds Emmylou Dideroff kneeling on the floor, having a one-sided conversation with St. Catherine of Siena. The rod belongs to Emmylou, so she's assumed to be the killer; she's put into a mental hospital under the care of Paz's new psychiatrist girlfriend. Emmylou's written confessions tell the horrifying but riveting tale of growing up with an insane mother and a stepfather who molested her, as well as her adventures as a whore, drug dealer and, after joining the Nursing Sisters of the Blood of Christ, a tribal leader in Africa. Readers will find each of the stories-Paz's, Emmylou's and that of the founder of the Nursing Sisters-equally fascinating. Evocative prose, an erudite author, spellbinding subject matter and totally original characters add up to make this one a knockout. Agent, Simon Lipskar. (Jan. 4) Forecast: A good marketing push and word of mouth should assure a position at the top of the charts for Gruber, who ghosted Robert K. Tanenbaum's bestselling Butch Karp legal thrillers for many years. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

"An engrossing and shocking story ... equal in depth and breadth to THE DA VINCI CODE ... Grade: A."--Rocky Mountain News
"Uncommon intrigue steeped in murder and mysticism ... An intoxicating thriller."--Daily News
"Done with such intelligence, style and understated dread."--Seattle Times
"[A] startling and original thriller ... Gruber is a gifted and natural storyteller."--Chicago Tribune
"Engrossing ... Gruber is one to watch."--San Francisco Chronicle
"TROPIC OF NIGHT and VALLEY OF BONES [are] miracles .... and among the essential novels of recent years."--Washington Post
"Powerful."--Seattle Post-Intelligencer
"Grade: A. A feast of rich characters ... globe-trotting plotline, and an exploration of faith's place in our world."--Entertainment Weekly
"Evocative prose, an erudite author, spellbinding subject matter and totally original characters add up to make this one a knockout."--Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"An intriguing intellectual thriller."--Miami Herald
"Dazzling, literate and downright scary .... mesmerizing, multilayered, page-turning new novel. Masterful ... Don't miss this book."--Cleveland Plain Dealer
"No second-novel slump here. Gruber has drawn even with John Sandford and has power to spare."--Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"The Stephen King of crime writing."--Denver Post

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