A wealthy oilman plunges ten stories from the balcony of a Miami hotel, and is impaled on an iron fence below. In the dead man's room, Jimmy Paz, the famed detective who solved the grisly Voodoo Murders, and Tito Morales, a young cop who witnessed the fall, find a woman on her knees, engaged in intimate conversation with Saint Catherine of Siena. Emmylou Dideroff had a strong motive for murder, and the evidence against her is overwhelming -- but she insists she's innocent of the crime, while freely admitting her guilt in numerous other amoral and unspeakable acts. And the shocking confessions of this complex enigma -- abused victim or vengeful whore, god-touched prophetess or delusional psychopath, demon or saint -- are leading Paz, Morales, and psychologist Lorna Wise into a terrifying dance with the Devil himself.
Praise for Valley of Bones
"TROPIC OF NIGHT and VALLEY OF BONES [are] miracles of intelligent fiction, and are among the essential novels of recent years ... VALLEY OF BONES challenges the reader to accept the reality of an unseen world ... Emmylou Dideroff is one of the great characters in recent popular fiction."
"Grade: A. A feast of rich characters, an intricate, globe-hopping plotline, and an exploration of faith's place in our world."
"After his dazzling, literate and downright scary debut thriller TROPIC OF NIGHT, Michael Gruber proves he's the real thing, and then some, with VALLEY OF BONES, his equally mesmerizing, multilayered, page-turning new novel. Gruber is nothing less than masterful ... Don't miss this book."
—Cleveland Plain Dealer
"An engrossing and shocking story. It's quite a book to start the new year with ... and it just may spoil you for anything else to come ... Grade: A."
—Rocky Mountain News
"Plenty of writers mix the thriller genre with...doses of the supernatural, but it isn't often done with such intelligence, style and understated dread."
"Gruber has not only written another winning tale but also deepened the reader's interest in the complex, compelling Jimmy Paz ... VALLEY OF BONES and the series [are] worth savoring."
—Los Angeles Times
"Uncommon intrigue steeped in murder and mysticism ... An intoxicating thriller."
"First there was TROPIC OF NIGHT, one of the strangest, most original crime novels in recent years ... Now there is VALLEY OF BONES, another starling and equally original thriller about faith and evil and the line of madness that can run between them ... Gruber is a gifted and natural storyteller."
"A writer...who takes genre conventions and bends them to his will....An ambitious foray into the nature of evil...and the clash of the rational and the irrational."
"An intriguing intellectual thriller ... that asks the question ... If Joan of Arc were alive today would she be found competent to stand trial? ... Oh, the things we learn, reading a mystery by an author who wonders about that place where systems collide."
"Engrossing ... Gruber is one to watch."
—San Francisco Chronicle
"Gruber more than fulfills the promise of his dazzling TROPIC OF NIGHT (2003), a critical and commercial success ... [PW calls Miami detective Jimmy Paz] one of the smartest, coolest, most intriguing cops working the pages of American thrillers these days ... Evocative prose, an erudite author, spellbinding subject matter and totally original characters add up to make this one a knockout ... [PW predicts] a position at the top of the charts for Gruber."
—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"No second-novel slump here. Gruber has drawn even with John Sandford and has power to spare....Gruber intersperses the Miami action with scenes from Emmylou's possibly confessional notebooks detailing her at first lurid and then heroic past, tossing in searing sex, African civil-war carnage, wonderfully serious religious thought, great tenderness, and some of the snappiest byplay since William Powell and Myrna Loy."
—Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)