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The Bones of Paris: A Stuyvesant & Grey Novel Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 10, 2013

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Frequently Bought Together

The Bones of Paris: A Stuyvesant & Grey Novel + Touchstone: A Stuyvesant & Grey Novel + Garment of Shadows: A novel of suspense featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes
Price for all three: $43.94

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Product Details

  • Series: Stuyvesant & Grey
  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; First Edition edition (September 10, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345531760
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345531766
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.6 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (180 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #64,405 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* King takes a break from her popular Mary Russell series to return to the story of Harris Stuyvesant from Touchstone (2008). Formerly an FBI agent and now a dissolute PI, Harris is still haunted by the events in the earlier book, which left his lover, Sarah, maimed. Needing work, he accepts a missing-persons job that takes him to Paris in 1929 and offers the possibility of reuniting with Sarah. Fans of Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris will feel right at home in the Jazz Age Paris setting, though many of the famous Lost Generation figures are portrayed in a much less flattering light here (artist Man Ray, in particular, is a misogynist and murder suspect). The story is complex, more than a little kinky, and absolutely fascinating. The missing girl Harris seeks turns out to be only one of many missing persons who came into the orbit of a group of offbeat Parisian artists whose credo demands that art be visceral. Could the infamous Moreau, who creates tableaux using human bones to suggest the corruption of the flesh, be somehow connected to the missing young people? Harris noses about through familiar Left Bank haunts, encountering the era’s usual suspects (Hemingway, Sylvia Beach, Cole Porter, and Josephine Baker, among them), but beyond the cameos and the bohemian atmosphere, there is a compelling thriller here and some fascinating fictional characters to go with the real-life ones. As always with King, the plot is tricky but marvelously constructed, delivering twists that not only surprise but also deepen the story and its multiple levels of meaning. Break out that dusty bottle of absinthe you have stored away and settle in for a treat. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: King’s Mary Russell novels are her biggest sellers, but Touchstone hit the extended New York Times list, and this follow-up has Paris and the Lost Generation going for it. And don’t discount the web-savvy King, who does online promotion as well as any author out there. --Bill Ott


“Haunting . . .  a portrait of the City of Light that glows with the fires of Hell.”—Richmond Times-Dispatch
“A compelling thriller . . . complex, more than a little kinky, and absolutely fascinating.”Booklist (starred review)
“Highly entertaining . . . Laurie R. King perfectly captures [the Jazz Age] as she explores the City of Light’s avenues and alleys.”—The Denver Post
“Engrossing . . . Readers who enjoy Laurie R. King’s noteworthy Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes mystery series are in for a surprise.”BookPage
“A chilling mystery and a haunting love letter to the Paris of Hemingway’s Lost Generation.”—Library Journal

More About the Author

New York Times bestselling crime writer Laurie R. King writes both series and standalone novels.

In the Mary Russell series (first entry: The Beekeeper's Apprentice), fifteen-year-old Russell meets Sherlock Holmes on the Sussex Downs in 1915, becoming his apprentice, then his partner. The series follows their amiably contentious partnership into the 1920s as they challenge each other to ever greater feats of detection.

The Kate Martinelli series, starting with A Grave Talent, concerns a San Francisco homicide inspector, her SFPD partner, and her life partner. In the course of the series, Kate encounters a female Rembrandt, a modern-day Holy Fool, two difficult teenagers, a manifestation of the goddess Kali and an eighty-year-old manuscript concerning'Sherlock Holmes.

King also has written stand-alone novels--the historical thriller Touchstone, A Darker Place, two loosely linked novels'Folly and Keeping Watch--and a science fiction novel, Califia's Daughters, under the pseudonym Leigh Richards.

King grew up reading her way through libraries like a termite through balsa before going on to become a mother, builder, world traveler, and theologian.

She has now settled into a genteel life of crime, back in her native northern California. She has a secondary residence in cyberspace, where she enjoys meeting readers in her Virtual Book Club and on her blog.

King has won the Edgar and Creasey awards (for A Grave Talent), the Nero (for A Monstrous Regiment of Women) and the MacCavity (for Folly); her nominations include the Agatha, the Orange, the Barry, and two more Edgars. She was also given an honorary doctorate from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific.

Check out King's website,, and follow the links to her blog and Virtual Book Club, featuring monthly discussions of her work, with regular visits from the author herself. And for regular LRK updates, follow the link to sign up for her email newsletter.

Customer Reviews

The challenging journey he embarks on is a very good story with intrigue, suspense, quirky characters and murder.
I also think there is too much name dropping in this book - a bit would be fine but she seems to have dragged all of 1920s Paris into this book.
If you care for good storys, fascinating characters and like the mix of history and fiction, "The Bones of Paris" is a perfect read.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 56 people found the following review helpful By Robin on September 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
ARC received from publisher via NetGalley.

Private detective and former FBI agent Harris Stuyvesant explores the darkest sides of the Surrealist movement in Paris as he searches for a woman he briefly met before she disappeared.

There is no denying that Laurie King is an excellent author or that this book is superbly written. However, I found the dark subject matter very disturbing, to the point where I was feeling depressed just by picking my Kindle up, knowing what was waiting for me. I like murder mysteries and I don't mind if they are dark and violent as it can add realism (ironic, in a book about Surrealism) but this is particularly heavy and gritty. In a way, the fact that the book evoked such emotion in me is a testament to how well written it is but it just got a bit too much for me.

It was also a little too modern for my tastes, although I did appreciate the appearances of certain celebrities from this time period (Man Ray, Cole Porter, etc), I guess I prefer my historical novels to be set pre-WWI.

Lastly, I have to admit I did not realize that this was part of a series and not the first book. I hate reading series out of order and had I known that this book was a sequel, I honestly wouldn't have requested an ARC. There is definitely a lot that made me feel out of the loop so I would not recommend it to someone who has not read the first book.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Lieder Madchen on September 10, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
It has been three years since the events of Touchstone, and Harris Stuyvesant is a little harder, a little more cynical and more than a little bit lost. He's survived on odd jobs and meaningless affairs since he gave up investigating and was given up by Sarah Grey. Now, however, he has a case that will challenge his somewhat aimless existence and bring him face to face with the ghosts of his past.

As he searches for a missing girl, Stuyvesant finds himself plumbing the most Stygian depths of Paris. Even his jaded eyes are surprised by the deeply disturbing and peculiarly sensual world he discovers. I was surprised and disturbed as well, yet could not look away. The rich and eerie descriptions were as revolting as they were compelling, sending shivers down my spine. It is a no-holds-barred exploration of some of the strangest artistic minds of the time. This is not a book for the faint of heart.

Despite the relentlessly macabre displays that take up so much of this novel, I did enjoy it a great deal. The writing was flawless, the mystery was fascinating and original, and I liked seeing Stuyvesant, Bennett and Sarah again. Of the three, Sarah has changed the most. She is, understandably, not so exuberant as before and a good deal stronger. However, she is still drawn to dangerous friendships and continues to have excellent taste in her romantic attachments.

There were some interesting new characters introduced, which almost made up for the fact that Bennett was hardly in most of the book. I especially liked Doucet and Nancy; a determined French cop and the very straightforward room-mate of Philippa Crosby, the girl Stuyvesant is attempting to find. Then there is the shudder-inducing Didi Moreau and the sophisticated, multi-layered Dominic Charmentier.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Gaele TOP 500 REVIEWER on September 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Set in 1929 Paris and weaving through the expat community and back alleys of the city, Laurie R. King brings the Jazz age and the pre-war city to life with her lovely descriptions, clever asides, literary giants and enough twists and turns to craft a compelling mystery. Hired to find Philippa (or Pip) a rather spoiled and rich American woman who has disappeared, Harris expects she will turn up in the arms or bed of one of the many bourgeoisie or artistic denizens of Montparnasse.

As we travel with Harris, King has managed to present the descriptions of the place and the people he encounters with a wholly new and yet familiar and comfortable essence, bringing them to life and light in a way that is both unique and beautiful. Although, as the search for Pip intensifies, and the trail seems to dead end at Théâtre du Grand-Guignol in Montmartre. From there the story becomes decidedly darker and more ominous; the beauty of the scene is often dimmed by the seedy undercurrent of murder, perversion and deviance at any price.

Now, there are a few faults in this story, but nothing that dimmed my compulsion to read on. As the second in the series, there were some misses in my understanding previous relationships formed with characters. The perpetrator of this murder was easy to identify, but the twists taken to both prove a murder and prevent others were entirely compelling and created a sense of tension, missing in the initial search for Pip.

What does come alive is the beautiful prose used to create visual imagery for the reader, the feel of the period and the absolute ability for Laurie R. King to transport the reader back in time, to a new and unfamiliar place that feels wholly possible and real.

I received an ARC copy from the publisher for purpose of honest review with France Book Tours. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By M. Maxwell on September 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover
(Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley, I received a tempoary e-galley of the book to review. Netgalley reviewers are not paid.)

The Bones of Paris, Laurie R King's new novel (outside the "alternate Holmes" series), is a tour through the underbelly of postwar (WWI) Paris.
In the garrets and grunge of artistic Paris, where rich girls go to slum, some are disappearing. When he's asked to look into the disappearance of Philippa Crosby, our hero Harris assumes that she's shacked up with an appropriately inappropriate boyfriend. But the trail takes him from interviewing the famous and infamous to the rich and creepy--through mansions built above the crypts, houses decaying and full of decay, and the theater where death is staged as realistically as possible, the Grand-Guignol. Who is the villain? The famous photographer who likes his girls young and submissive? The artist who likes detached limbs and clean bones? The aristocrat whose forbears are mentioned in the same tone as the Marquis de Sade?
Harris also has his personal demons to follow and face, after the events of Touchstone, King's earlier book featuring him and the intriguing Bennett Grey.
In addition to loyal King fans, this book should appeal to readers of Jacqueline Winspear and Charles Todd.
More books, please!
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