The Hungry Bones

What They're Saying

Publisher’s Weekly: In Johnson’s gripping fifth mystery featuring Alexa Glock (after The Bone Riddle), the dental forensics expert juggles two cold cases and a recent kidnapping. Though American expat Alexa has long delighted in assisting New Zealand law enforcement, her relationship with Auckland Det. Insp. Bruce Horne is on shaky ground. While Alexa chews on the idea of leaving New Zealand for a new professional opportunity, archaeologist Ana Luckenbaugh asks her for a consultation: Ana has exhumed the century-old body of Chinese gold miner Wing Lun, and Lun’s great-granddaughter has asked her to repatriate the remains to China. While confirming the bones belong to Lun, Alexa notices a hole in the skull that calls his cause of death into question. Then authorities unearth a second skeleton with similar wounds nearby, and the principal of the local school goes missing, shortly after killer Earl Hammer is released from prison. Can Alexa find a link between the cases? Johnson seamlessly ties the past mystery to the present one, and her rich shading of even minor characters sets this apart from similar procedurals. This series continues to impress.

J Kromrie at Goodreads: The Hungry Bones by Sara E. Johnson is a riveting addition to the Alexa Glock Forensics Mysteries series, taking readers on a suspenseful journey through the picturesque landscapes of New Zealand and the dark alleys of unsolved crimes.

In this fifth installment, forensic odontologist Alexa Glock finds herself entangled in a web of mysteries that span over a century. The narrative cleverly intertwines the past and present, as Alexa is called upon to examine the exhumed remains of a miner from the late-19th-century gold rush era. The discovery of a hole in the skull sets off a chain of events that leads to the reopening of cold cases and the disappearance of a beloved school principal.

Sara E. Johnson’s storytelling is masterful, weaving intricate plot lines with rich character development. Alexa’s personal struggles, including her tumultuous relationship and professional uncertainties, add depth to the narrative, making her a relatable and compelling protagonist. The setting of New Zealand, with its unique history and cultural backdrop, provides a fresh and intriguing canvas for the unfolding drama.

Cary Griffith, Award Winning Minnesota Author of the Sam Rivers Mysteries: The fifth Alexa Glock Forensics Mystery does not disappoint. Tapped to ID the long-interred bones of a Chinese gold miner, Alexa unearths much more than she anticipated. She uses her considerable skills to solve a recent death, a decades-old murder, and to right the wrongs of two generations. I love novels in which history, geography, science, and a little love intersect. And where surprises turn over with every page. The Hungry Bones is the fifth installment in what could also be called CSI: New Zealand.