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Rag and Bone (Henry Rios Mystery #7)

4.27  ·  Rating Details  ·  228 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
One of the most highly acclaimed writers in the mystery genre "explores new emotional depths" in this last Henry Rios novel. The gay Mexican-American attorney, after the loss of his lover, must face his own mortality while recovering from a heart attack-and reach out to a family he didn't know he had.

"For more years than we've noticed, Michael Nava has been creating an i
Paperback, 304 pages
Published June 4th 2002 by Berkley Trade (first published January 1st 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 395)
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"THIS BOOK BRINGS TO an end this series of mysteries and my career as a mystery writer."

Michael Nava

Well, Henry got his happy ending, but there are many other UNHAPPY PIs, lawyers and UNSOLVED cases around there...

WHY to give up a career as a MYSTERY writer?!

Emotions aside, I LOVE Henry Rios and I love Michael Nava's writing.

The last book in one of the most CAPTIVATING mystery series was probably the most PERSONAL in regard to Henry Rios PERSONAL life, comparing to the previous sequels. But
Kaje Harper
Mar 10, 2013 Kaje Harper rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, m-m, mystery
This is the last book in the mystery series about gay lawyer Henry Rios. Each book has been a blend of crime/mystery and personal and family drama. Henry has been through a lot, including finding and losing a first love, and various family and friend changes and revelations, all presented in an understated way that is moving, in part because of Henry's very honorable stoicism.

In this book, Henry confronts his own mortality, the shifts in his life and ambitions, a newfound relationship with his s
Jun 28, 2015 Giulio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Perfect ending to a wonderful gay mystery series.

"He was lying naked on the bed, his hands cupping his head on the pillows, watching me dress. I paused and studied him. I remembered some of the boys I’d slept with in my twenties and thirties, with their hard, perfect bodies, and while perfection has its attractions, it isn’t really lovable. John had golden skin and big arms, but the muscles in his chest sagged a little and there were pockets of flab at his waist and a mesh of fine wrinkles above
Ije the Devourer of Books
This is the last in the Henry Rios series and my favorite from the series because it is filled with hope.

Henry's near death experience kind of marks the death of his old life and all his losses and the beginning of the new. Now at the end of this fantastic series Henry for me has become a kind of 20th Century Job, who having lost everything begins life again with family, friends, love and a new opportunity.

Henry reunites with his sister who was distant before and the two of them begin a kind o
The last book of an excellent series, it doesn't disappoint. Of course I'm sad to read Nava's words: ''This book brings to an end this series of mysteries and my career as a mystery writer'', but the series had to end at one stage, and it ends in a relatively good place.

In this last story there is slightly more romance than in the others. I wonder if the title's reference to The Circus Animals' Desertion, a poem by William Butler Yeats, was chosen because of this. In the poem Yeats wants to find
Marshall Thornton
Mar 05, 2013 Marshall Thornton rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 13, 2014 Maddy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tops, 2002-reads
RATING: 4.75

It’s not my normal reading style to read the last book in a series first, but in the case of Rag and Bone, I’m glad that I broke my own rule. The book is exceptional on many levels and has an emotional resonance that you don’t often find in crime fiction.

Henry Rios is at a point where he feels that life is pretty much meaningless. His long time lover, Josh, died of AIDS. He’s been working as a lawyer for a long time and is burned out. So when a heart attack strikes him down, he is mo
I enjoy a well-told story with smart characters and a mystery that make me think. And all of the previous books have been that. But they have all had characters with sad lives and very little happiness for anyone involved. Superbly written and realistic, but heart-wrenching.

Rag and Bone takes all the above and adds some likeable characters, a family drama, several people for Henry to love, and a developing romance between two men who act like adults. Okay, I'm a sap. Or maybe just a romantic. B
Feb 18, 2009 Mark rated it really liked it
Had heard a lot about this author. Was expecting the book to be a crime story somehwere between a murder mystery and a court room drama. I was pleasantly surprised that it really begins to unfold as a personal/family drama and then the mystery comes out in the middle of it with the personal relationships as a rich and complicated backdrop. I came to care so much for the characters b/c the situations were so real. It's also nice to read about gay male characters who aren't actors, models or write ...more
Adam Dunn
Jan 27, 2015 Adam Dunn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: glbt
Not perfect but very good. I will miss Henry Rios and this series, I'm very glad I found it and read it.
I'm not sure over what exact dates the series was written, I guess I could check (1986-2001) so yeah, a long time. Some of that makes it feel a little disjointed. As a series I would have liked more cohesion between the books and characters and emotions that carry over and there really wasn't any. This book is a great example, for six books we're told Henry is the picture of health and in book
Nov 04, 2014 Benjamin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay-detective
Rag and Bone is Michael Nava's seventh Henry Rios mystery, the gay Chicano laywer. Henry is now in his late forties, and as we rejoin him he is on the verge of a heart attack that leaves him weakened and with little purpose or desire to continue. But soon events will change that.

He learns that his sister, with whom he has had little contact over that she had an illegitimate daughter she gave up for adoption at birth. The daughter, Vicky, has now got in touch with her, and is in need of help; and
I've read most of the seven books in the Henry Rios series, and thought would try it one more time. Unfortunately, I just cant't muster the enthusiasm other readers do. Actually, from the books, I find myself thinking Michael Nava must be an awfully good guy, and I like the values his novels display.

But the books themselves simply don't get there for me. In this one, as usual, Henry falls in love altogether to easily and quickly. The relationship never came alive for me. And I guessed almost all
Feb 10, 2012 Vivencio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
curtain call for henry rios .... the most satisfying read of the series.
Michael Flick
Feb 22, 2016 Michael Flick rated it it was ok
“Rag and Bone” is the seventh and final book by Michael Nava in his Henry Rios series. Nothing much happens in the first half of the book as Rios has a heart attack and precipitously, as is his habit, acquires two new love interests: a boyfriend of his own age and ethnicity and a 10 year-old grandnephew he previously didn’t know he had. The book picks up when Rios defends the boy’s mother, his previously unknown niece, when she is accused of killing her husband. Of course, things aren’t so simpl ...more
May 15, 2008 _inbetween_ added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to _inbetween_ by: chatpa
This is the seventh and final novel about the gay Latino laywer Henry Rios - and also the last Nava intends to write, which is even sadder. The reviews mostly give away the plot, and by now the critics have aptly described how these mysteries were beautifully executed and contained astute observations, sometimes raw fear and lyric mournfulness, in an always precise style, clarity, with a likable, genuine hero.

My problem is how it all ends here in the traditional conservative mainstream cliché. P
A Michael
I wanted this to be better than it was. It's an enjoyable and easy read and for that I give it 3 stars. However, the lead character, Henry, seems to fall in love instantly, and demonstrates a lack of thorough analysis that seems dichotomous to his character. I could see the solution half way through the book, yet Henry doesn't see it until a key piece of information is presented to him. All in all, the series, which ends with this book, was worth reading but did not live up to my expectations.
Dec 26, 2013 Averin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Worth waiting for, Henry's personal life nicely wrapped [referencing [book:The Little Death|17347222]'s Hugh Paris, it always seemed to me that Henry's feeling shouldn't have been despatched so quickly] up. I'm going to re-read the whole series when I'm not carrying 18 units. Nava has a beautiful way with words, proves why my creative writing professor said start with poetry and read it, too.

The mystery parts of his stories aren't always the best. The strength of the Henry Rios stories is how H
Dec 23, 2008 Scot rated it really liked it
Seventh and final installment in the Henry Rios mystery series. Nava continues to make learning real court room procedures interesting in the way he works the requirements and legal process into the narrative. He also continues his use of strong literary allusions: the title references a Yeats poem, and the classic works of the Iliad and the Odyssey appear as recurring themes. Since this novel brings closure to the series, I strongly recommend reading the other six books first. The mystery itsel ...more
May 22, 2015 Lisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What is not to like about Michael Nava's mystery series. Great characters, wonderful LA scenery, and a believable righteous ending. I waited a long time to read this one, the last in the series. My GLBT students always love these books, although they are becoming more and more difficult to find and order.
John Klomp
Jun 01, 2015 John Klomp rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I wish there were more books in the series

Nava created an extremely well developed character in Henry Rios. I felt as though I knew him. The plots of all 7 books in the series are complex and well developed, and I had a hard time putting the Kindle down.
This last novel in Nava's Henry Rios series makes you happy in the way it closes the series and makes you a little sad that Nava won't write about Henry's life no more.

The plot is a bit iffy, borders a bit too much on the family side of things. Everything is tied up in a neat bow at the end, kinda. Because, well, it's a little too neat for my taste.

But... Henry does find solace. If only for that, for John that comes into Henry's life at the right moment, at the right time, for them to go forwa
Linda ~ chock full of hoot, just a little bit of nanny ~
Family takes center focus in this one, the final story in the Henry Rios series. Henry has been largely without family most of his life, and it's heartening to see him and his sister build a bridge between each other, as well as expanding their family in unexpected ways. The mystery revolves around the family as well, but it's not all doom and gloom as in previous books, though there are some casualties along the way. Still, this series leaves Henry, his family and his new relationship in a posi ...more
Mar 12, 2015 Kim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed Rag and Bone over all of the Henry Rios books I've read so far. Learning more about his upbringing and his relationship with his sister really gave readers a more in-depth look into his life. The bonds formed between Henry and Angel and Henry and John were very sweet.
Oct 04, 2015 Nicole rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I thought I was reading the first book in a series but it was actually the last. Cognitive dissonance.
Feb 18, 2016 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Last of the Henry Rios mysteries. A really great series. Highly recommended.
Mina MacLeod
Feb 17, 2014 Mina MacLeod rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A stellar conclusion to the Henry Rios mysteries. This books marks a sharp shift in tone from the previous--more than ever before, it focuses on Henry's personal life and family. It's fitting, especially since as of the last book, readers may find themselves growing as weary as Henry with his constant struggle for happiness. Even the case du jour involves family. Overall, very satisfying end.
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Jan 08, 2008 Susan rated it it was amazing
I am a huge fan of Nava's Henry Rios novels. Henry is a gay criminal defense attorney in Los Angeles and his stories are about more than just the law. This one is the very best. Henry has a heart attack and gains a family. Unfortunately, when you finish the book you get to the Acknowledgements to learn that this is the last Henry Rios book and the end of Michael Nava's mystery writing. Very sad.
May 25, 2011 Eli rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, 2011, mystery, queer
The last Henry Rios book! ::sniffle:: I appreciate that Nava ends the series with some loose ends tied up and others unfolding. Even if he never returns to Henry's life, I can easily imagine it going on, and that's good to be going on with.
Feb 27, 2016 Spitz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A satisfying conclusion to the series, pretty much. These books have had a big impact on me.
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Q&A with Josh Lanyon: Henry Rios Mysteries Challenge #7: Rag and Bone 21 51 Apr 05, 2016 08:28PM  
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Michael Nava is the author of a groundbreaking series of seven novels featuring a gay, Latino criminal defense lawyer Henry Rios. Nava is a six-time recipient of the Lambda Literary Award in the mystery category, as well as the Bill Whitehead Lifetime Achievement Award for gay and lesbian literature.

In fall, 2016, Kórima Press will publish Lay Your Sleeping Head, a re-imagining of The Little Deat
More about Michael Nava...

Other Books in the Series

Henry Rios Mystery (7 books)
  • The Little Death
  • Goldenboy
  • Howtown
  • The Hidden Law
  • The Death of Friends
  • The Burning Plain

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