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Tall Bones by Anna Bailey


Tall Bones by Anna Bailey
UK Publication Date: 1st April 2021
Reviewed by: Book Worm
Rating: [★★★]

In a small town where nothing is secret who can you really trust?

This ARC was provided by Random House UK (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis from Goodreads: When seventeen-year-old Emma leaves her best friend Abi at a party in the woods, she believes, like most girls her age, that their lives are just beginning. Many things will happen that night, but Emma will never see her friend again.

Abi’s disappearance cracks open the façade of the small town of Whistling Ridge, its intimate history of long-held grudges and resentment. Even within Abi’s family, there are questions to be asked – of Noah, the older brother whom Abi betrayed, of Jude, the shining younger sibling who hides his battle scars, of Dolly, her mother and Samuel, her father – both in thrall to the fire and brimstone preacher who holds the entire town in his grasp. Then there is Rat, the outsider, whose presence in the town both unsettles and excites those around him.

Anything could happen in Whistling Ridge, this tinder box of small-town rage, and all it will take is just one spark – the truth of what really happened that night out at the Tall Bones….

My Thoughts: I enjoyed this claustrophobic look at life in small town America. The characters come across as exaggerated stereotypes and I have to believe people really aren’t like this. That said it is that stereotyping that makes the book interesting as Bailey explores how awful people can be to each other and how easy those in a small town find it to turn a blind to what goes on behind closed doors.

The book stars with the disappearance of Abi and moves backwards and forwards in time showing events from the perspective of various characters so that the reader builds up a picture of what has been going and what actually occurred on the night in question.

I liked the way the narrative built up the suspense and kept you guessing with sly reveals and subtle asides but by the end of the story what I appreciated most was the character development…yes the stereotypes (or at least some of them) managed to move forward and become more than a stereotype.

Who would like this? Anyone looking for a light thriller who is more concerned about the people than the plot twists. I will just issue a trigger warner for domestic abuse and violence towards children.

We want to hear from you! Have you read this book? What did you think? 

One Comment Post a comment
  1. i’m glad you enjoyed this! lovely review ❤


    April 25, 2021

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