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The Bone Orchard (Mike Bowditch #5)

3.98  ·  Rating Details  ·  905 Ratings  ·  168 Reviews
In the aftermath of a family tragedy, Mike Bowditch has left the Maine Warden Service and is working as a fishing guide in the North Woods. But when his mentor Sgt. Kathy Frost is forced to kill a troubled war veteran in an apparent case of "suicide by cop," he begins having second thoughts about his decision.

Now Kathy finds herself the target of a government inquiry and
Hardcover, 306 pages
Published July 15th 2014 by Minotaur Books (first published January 1st 2014)
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May 22, 2014 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Well, I liked it.
Peggy Strack
Jul 21, 2014 Peggy Strack rated it it was amazing
I don't usually read crime novels, but the Mike Bowditch series was highly recommended to me by a bookseller. I'm glad I listened. The Bone Orchard moved along swiftly with suspense, emotion, and superb storytelling. I read it in two days because I could not put it down. I look forward to reading the other four novels in the series.
Sep 27, 2014 judy rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery-thriller
Anyone who has not read this series would be well advised not to start with this book. This almost felt like some kind of bridge. It cleaned up things from the past and set the stage for the next book. I do like this series and will continue but I didn't find this book as enjoyable as other fans did. My reaction was that it was bumpy--not the smooth transtions I've come to expect.
Aug 14, 2014 Sharonm rated it it was amazing
Mike Bowditch is growing up. His job as game warden implies that he might be older than he is, but the previous books in the series have made it clear that he's still got a lot of maturing to do. After all, he's still under 30. As THE BONE ORCHARD opens, Mike has left the service and become a bearded, long-haired, fishing guide. He's caretaking the remote mansion that featured in book MASSACRE POND, the previous book in the Bowditch series, and just sort of generally being irresponsible. His bo ...more
Lea Wait
Aug 09, 2014 Lea Wait rated it it was amazing
Paul Doiron has done it again! I think this is the best of his books so far ... despite his leaving a conventional mystery format (Mike Bowditch, his main character, has turned in his badge so is no longer an official crime fighter and, in a sense, is now amateur sleuth with contacts and experience.) This twist also gives him a lot of freedom to explore possibilities, and his own life and relationships. Characters from earlier books walk through the pages of THE BONE ORCHARD, bringing readers up ...more
Connie Ruggles
Jul 29, 2014 Connie Ruggles rated it it was amazing
I've read all the Bowditch books and I continue to enjoy the development of the characters. Paul Doiron writes as if he's dissecting an onion. Layer by layer we are witness to the growth(or lack of it) in Mike Bowditch and all the characters.

I appreciate the knowledge of Maine that Doiron uses to describe this vast state. I'm from "away", as they say here, and like the snippets of information tucked into these books.

I'm a fan, and can't wait for the next installment in the life and times of Mike
Jan 06, 2015 Barbara rated it it was ok
Sergeant Kathy Frost and her partner, Maine game wardens, are forced to shoot a badly disfigured Gulf War veteran, Jimmy Gammon, in self-defense ("suicide by cop"). However, Jimmy's family and friends, as well as other veterans are infuriated and a few days later Kathy is shot and badly wounded. It so happens that Mike Bowditch - an ex-game warden who was visiting his former mentor Kathy - was on the spot at the time, and was also injured. Mike - who quit being a warden because of friction with ...more
Nov 12, 2014 Pamela rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, suspense, maine
“At the top of the ridge was a grove of red pines. On the other side of it was an orchard where deer came at dawn and dusk to eat the fallen apples . . . Kathy called it “the bone orchard” because there was a family cemetery hidden among the roots of the trees. The mossy gravestones were so weathered you could no longer read the names of the dead.”

Some people believe the dead still walk among us. Other people believe once you’re dead, you’re gone. Either way, Mike Bowditch knows: “Just because y
Aug 30, 2014 Kevintipple rated it it was amazing
It is late May and Mike Bowditch has recently done what some in the Maine Warden Service have long wanted---he quit. These days he is working as a fishing guide. That decision had many consequences some of which were obvious and some that were not. One of the not so obvious ones, at least to Mike, was the fact that he wasn’t available when his friend and mentor Sargent Kathy Frost needed him the most. Instead, she was with a rookie officer when dealing with the call about a troubled veteran who ...more
Jul 27, 2014 Pamela rated it really liked it
Three things besides the plot and characters that I really like about Doiron:

1. His character has a sense of smell. This may seem like a silly thing to point out, but it isn't--at least to me. I am getting so very, very tired of books that are written as though they were movies. Sight and sound only. No smell. Mike Bowditch has a nose and knows how to use it! :)

2. No annoying sound track. I am also very tired of writers who go into excruciating detail about every single song the main character
Gloria Feit
Feb 18, 2015 Gloria Feit rated it it was amazing
With this, his fifth novel, Paul Doiron seems poised to join the few outstanding authors, headed IMHO by William Kent Krueger, who bring to vivid life the landscape, beauty and inhabitants (both the human and wildlife variety) of the northernmost parts of the United States, the states bordering Canada - - a lofty perch, to be sure. In this instance, that means Maine, ‘the most rural state in the country.’ The protagonist is Mike Bowditch, 27 years old and a former game warden [who in Maine have ...more
Tricia Douglas
Apr 06, 2015 Tricia Douglas rated it really liked it
(actual rating 4.5) I found another new author (and character) I really like. This was #5 in the Mike Bowditch series so I have a lot of catching up to do. Bowditch is in the Maine Warden Service, kind of like an outdoors policeman. There's a lot of action going on which, if I tried to explain everything, you probably wouldn't want to read the book. But the story and characters are original and well-done. There's very little that I didn't like in the book. This is a great mystery/suspense book, ...more
Chad Preston
Jan 15, 2015 Chad Preston rated it it was amazing
Another great book by Paul Doiron!
Apr 19, 2015 Carol rated it it was amazing

I had a déjà vu feeling when I started this book. The character reminded me of one that I will never forget. When I was about half way through The Bone Orchard by Paul Doiron, I realized that I had previously read another book in the same series. Of course I did not remember the name of the book or the author but the character stood out! I looked the book up and found out that the other book was Bad Little Falls. I was impressed back then with the author's attention to detail and nature and of c
Ray Palen
Aug 21, 2014 Ray Palen rated it really liked it
Many people considered Jimmy Gammon a hero. He served his country valiantly in Afghanistan and returned home. Those who knew him before he enlisted saw the change in 'Jim'. One night he got high on booze and pills and pulled a shotgun on a pair of cops. The ruling was suicide by cop.

It is this unfortunate death that lies at the center of Paul Doiron's latest Mike Bowditch novel, THE BONE ORCHARD. Jimmy was an acquaintance of Mike's. The real issue is that one of the cops that shot Jimmy is Mike'
Jul 15, 2014 Kathy rated it it was amazing
The Mike Bowditch Mystery series is one of the best series currently available. Paul Doiron brings Maine to life in this series. When an author can transport a reader to a local through his words, you know he is a writer worth his salt.

Mike Bowditch is a rebel, a non-conformist, but a man of integrity. The kind of man you would want as a friend. Kathy Frost is lucky to have such a friend. She is very rightly annoyed with him for leaving the warden service. Because Mike is a natural. He has the
Jul 27, 2014 Art rated it really liked it
Paul Doiron's Mike Bowditch series just keeps getting better and better. It has now reached the point when I am excited to see a new book and so eager to read it that it immediately jumps to the top of my "next read" pile.

And the fifth book in the series does not disappoint.

This time around, Bowditch has left the warden service to become a private guide. But when his mentor is involved in a shooting, he is gradually pulled back into the world of law enforcement.

Mike has grown and changed in this
Aug 26, 2014 Harvey rated it really liked it
Paul Doiron has hit full stride with the latest entry (#5?) in the Mike Bowditch series.

Mike has resigned from the Maine Game Wardens but he is still a "cop". He can't help getting involved when his friend and training Sergeant is wounded in an apparent revenge incident.

Doiron masterfully blends Mike's investigation with interweavings of his personal life, past and present. He also offers us backstory on Sergeant Kathy Frost we have not learned before.

Doiron continues his ability to describe rur
Vicki Elia
Jul 20, 2014 Vicki Elia rated it it was ok
Audiobook Review

A boring story of a guy that went off the rails from his life as a game warden in Maine, and has a meaningless personal life. The chronic structure of the story made of flashbacks that flesh out the why of his measly existence is so plaguing that it destroys any remnants of story. There are a few scenes of mayhem, but the lack of linear storytelling easily defeats this as any sort of crime/thriller.

If Paul Doiron wants some reference of how to write a game warden story, read som
Sharon Huether
Oct 20, 2015 Sharon Huether rated it it was amazing
Mike Bowditch got tired of being a game warden. So he just quit and was working as a river guide. He was still the same "Mike". When an emergency came up. Who was the first one on the scene it was Mike. A very dangerous situation came about when a female warden was shot. Mike was there and saved her life. He had an idea who the perpetrator was and went after him. It wasn't hard to be reinstated as a Maine Game Warden. I love how the author draws the reader into each scene. You feel like your in ...more
Dec 13, 2014 Jim rated it it was amazing
Mike Bowditch may have left the Warden Service, but it hasn't left him. From his reaction to a couple of sports who think they're above the rules (Mike comes across them in his new life as a fishing guide) to his inability to keep his nose out of an imbroglio involving his former partner, Bowditch shows how easily he can revert to the talented yet unruly persona that kept him in so much hot water in his former law-enforcement life. He does try to control these impulses, but then his former partn ...more
Nov 07, 2014 Caryn rated it really liked it
While Mike Bowditch is more contented working as a fishing guide than he has been in years, every so often something comes along that makes him second guess his choice to leave the his former position as a game warden. It’s the little encounters that cause him to look back-like the two guys he runs across camping illegally on the island while out with a boat full of clients. What he wants to do is nail their sorry selves, but with his clients on board, the most he can do is call the current game ...more
Chris Demer
Oct 21, 2014 Chris Demer rated it really liked it
This is another intriguing mystery about the former Maine Game Warden, Mike Bowditch. Mike has left the service and is now a hunting and fishing guide. When he returns from a trip in the wilderness, he finds out that his former boss and mentor, Kathy, has been involved in the shooting of an unstable war veteran in an apparent "suicide by cop".
Although she rejects his texted offer to visit her and try to give support (she cannot discuss the incident as it is under investigation), he is in the ar
Oct 09, 2014 Jill rated it really liked it
I was very happy to see Paul Doiron had written another book in the Mike Bowditch series about a Maine game warden. (In Maine, game wardens are full law-enforcement officers, with all the powers of state troopers: “They are the ‘off-road police.’”)

Mike, 27, was a game warden for three years, but he recently resigned to become a fishing guide in the rugged outland Down East. (In Maine, “Down East” refers to the coast of the U.S. state of Maine from Penobscot Bay to the Canadian border.) Mike had
Kathleen Hagen
After the death of both his parents, Mike Bowditch feels he needs a change of job. He leaves the game warden service and signs on to guide private fishing tours. But he is only two months out of the game warden life when a young vet, quite damaged as a result of being hit by a bomb in Afghanistan, shuts himself up in the barn, threatens to shoot the game wardens pointing a gun at them, and is killed. It is a suicide by cop. The game warden who killed him is Mike Bowditch’s former supervisor and ...more
Tom Donaghey
Sep 21, 2014 Tom Donaghey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
THE BONE ORCHARD by Paul Doiron is the fifth book featuring Mr. Doiron’s signature character, Mike Bowditch. Being part of a series means there is a history here and to be fulfilled one should actually go back and do the reading. That is not necessary as this story gives you just enough back-story shading so as to fill you in on the necessary details. However, after reading this tale, reading the others might be a wonderful idea.
Mike is a fishing guide in Maine’s backwoods when he learns that
Aug 08, 2014 Sue rated it really liked it
Mike Bowditch is a former Game Warden in Maine. His former mentor and partner, Kathy, was involved in the "murder by cop" of a former Maine National Guardsman who had been horribly wounded by an IED in Afghanistan; the man was also a casual acquaintance of Mike's. A couple of days the shooting, Mike decides to contact Kathy, knowing she can't talk about the shooting but just wanting to touch base with her. While on the phone with her, her dog starts barking & Kathy terminates the call to see ...more
Yolanda Davis
Sep 29, 2015 Yolanda Davis rated it really liked it
Although this is the fifth in the Mike Bowditch series, this was the first for me. It didn't matter, at all that I hadn't read the others.
Bowditch is just getting used to a change of career. He used to be a police officer for the Maine Warden Service, but now he's enjoying a slower pace of life as a nature & fishing guide for the many visitors to the beautiful state of Maine. The first part of the book is taken up by telling the reader a lot about his new way of life, and to be honest I was
Rats!!! I messed up and skipped over book #4! When I realized something was missing, I looked it up and put in a request for book 4, but was already hooked on the story and couldn't put it down. Hate reading out of order. After just finishing a weak cozy mystery, it was such a welcomed relief to get grabbed and transported back into a great series. The main character, Mike Bowditch, is still a mess with anger issues, with drinking too much and with dealing with the women in his life. In this boo ...more
Randy Daugherty
Jan 20, 2015 Randy Daugherty rated it really liked it
Mike Bowditch has left the Maine's Warden Service, seeking refuge far from those he has known as a fishing guide.The time spent out in the woods and on the water has changed Mike, his hair, a beard, but more importantly he has changed inside.
When his mentor and friend Kathy Frost is forced to help a vet commit suicide by cop, and then in the aftermath is herself shot, Mike cannot help his born instincts and training. Though he starts out to check on her and see how she is doing, he is drawn into
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Paul Doiron is the author of the Mike Bowditch series of crime novels, including The Poacher's Son, which won the the Barry Award and the Strand Critics Award for Best First Novel and was nominated for an Edgar Award, an Anthony Award, a Macavity Award, and a Thriller Award for Best First Novel, and the Maine Literary Award for "Best Fiction of 2010." PopMatters named it to its Best Fiction of 201 ...more
More about Paul Doiron...

Other Books in the Series

Mike Bowditch (7 books)
  • The Poacher's Son (Mike Bowditch, #1)
  • Trespasser (Mike Bowditch, #2)
  • Bad Little Falls (Mike Bowditch, #3)
  • Massacre Pond (Mike Bowditch, #4)
  • The Precipice: A Novel (Mike Bowditch, #6)
  • Widowmaker: A Novel (Mike Bowditch, #7)

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