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Where There's a Will (Gideon Oliver, #12)
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Where There's a Will (Gideon Oliver #12)

3.85  ·  Rating Details  ·  502 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
Alex Torkelsson has just gotten word: after going missing ten years ago, Alex's late uncle Magnus's plane has been found south of Hawaii's Big Island. So too have Magnus's few skeletal remains, now handed over to the only man who can fit together the pieces of this mystery. But what forensic detective Gideon Oliver discovers could shake the Torkelsson family tree.
Paperback, 278 pages
Published February 7th 2006 by Berkley (first published 2005)
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Jan 28, 2014 Matt rated it really liked it
Elkins returns with another 'family-based' mystery, with ties to a young John Lau. When the remains of an old man are found in a fire, his family (and the police) investigate before discovering what appears to be professional hitmen connections and the case is laid to rest,. The man's brother is presumed killed in a plane crash that same night, though neither the body or the plane ever appear. When the wreckage of the plane is discovered and Dr. Gideon Oliver just happens to be in Hawaii on vaca ...more
Dec 30, 2012 Cat. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, fiction
Gideon goes to Hawaii to visit with his FBI friend, John, who grew up there. They are scheduled to stay at the ranch where John worked as a teenager, which was founded and run in the 50s by three Swedish former sailors and their sister.

The sister is the only one of that generation still living, but just as John and Gideon arrive, news reaches them that the airplane one of the brothers was last seen in has been discovered in a lagoon across the Pacific.

The family asks Gideon to go with John and
Nov 16, 2014 Ellen rated it it was amazing
Where There's a Will by Aaron Elkins.

This is a tale of two brothers. Magnus and Torkel Torkelsson. They quarreled often over the running and management of their ranch in Hawaii. One of their most severe quarrels turns to murder. But...which brother was murdered and how would his murder affect the rest of the family and their inheritance?

This is by far one of the best in the Gideon Oliver series. The ending will astound you!
Diane Banks
Jan 11, 2011 Diane Banks rated it did not like it
Ug, I have loved his books up until this one. It could be that since I live in Hawaii it was not real authentic to me, but I think it was more than that. His other books were rich with scenery you could almost smell and the "bone" clues were not boring. This one I found myself not raptly reading but quickly skipping pages to get to the next whatever. I may be judging harshly but I was truly disappointed and yes I am comparing this to his previous books.
Dec 15, 2007 Penny rated it really liked it
There are two things I really like about the Gideon Oliver series: the anthropology that often gets worked into the plots, and the set of likable characters and the relationships between them. This one didn't feature a lot of anthropology, but it did have Gideon and his FBI agent friend, John Lau, working in more of a partnership than I'd seen before. And of course the plot was fun and well-crafted, as usual.
Jun 03, 2008 John rated it really liked it
Another gem from one of my favorite little mystery writers. No sex, no violence and always well crafted, Elkins is a master of his genre.
Gloria Mccracken
Apr 08, 2013 Gloria Mccracken rated it it was amazing
Another excellent installment of an excellent series.
Dec 09, 2010 Erin rated it it was amazing
Another Great Edition to the series
Ann Keller
Nov 20, 2011 Ann Keller rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
Bloodied and half alive, Magnus Torkelsson flees the lush island of Hawaii in a small plane. Unfortunately, he and his young pilot overshoot their remote island refuge and go down somewhere in the vast Pacific Ocean. Seven years pass and Magnus is at last declared legally dead. His huge holdings are divided among his family, making them very wealthy and all is apparently as it should be. Then somebody locates the small plane.

Gideon Oliver, a forensic detective, kindly offers his services to the
Oct 26, 2013 Hobart rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-reads
Spending time with an Aaron Elkins book is like spending time with old friends. Without meaning to I’d taken a few years off from reading the Oliver books, and then picked one up a couple of years ago and it was just like picking up a friend from high school like no time had passed. I had the same experience with this one it was a pleasant reunion with my old buddies Gideon, Julie and John.

A minor quibble to get out of the way before I get into this: I’m sorry, you really can’t be naming a main
Aug 24, 2012 Mike rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, reviewed
The book opens in 1994 with a female pilot, Claudia, and an oldish man, a Torkelsson brother, fleeing Hawaii in the night. The plane gently glides down to the ocean from 10,500 feet ("A light plane that has run out of fuel at an altitude of 10,500 feet does not plummet to earth like a safe falling out of a window"), a wing hits the water, and it’s all over for that flight.

Jump forward 10 years and some swimmers from a cruise ship spot the plane and investigate it. Going by the plane's registrati
WHERE THERE’S A WILL (Forensic Anthropologist-Hawaii-Cont) – G
Elkins, Aaron – 12th in series
Berkley Prime Crime, 2005- Paperback
Forensic Anthropologist Gideon Oliver is vacationing with his friend, FBI Agent John Lau, on the private ranch of the Torkelsson. Years before, the ranch had been owned by two brothers and their sister. One of the brothers was found murdered and the other disappeared by plane. Now, the family has received word that the plane has been found in the water off an uninhabite
Therese B
Mar 13, 2016 Therese B rated it liked it
This author was recommended by the Mystery Group I belong to and I found it to be just OK. Too much forensics for me. English author....not my favorite
Aug 16, 2014 Dorota rated it really liked it
ripped through it in a day. Another riveting read. Not as much laugh out loud funny as some of the others, but still highly entertaining.
May 20, 2015 Nancy rated it really liked it
What a complicated plot! I guessed who the murderer was early in the book, but the end of the story was a complete surprise.
Jan 08, 2013 Mysteryfan rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
Aaron Elkins was the first author I chose from recommendations in More Book Lust .Gideon Oliver is a forensic anthropologist but friendlier and more socially adept than Temperance Brennan. Oliver is closer to what I think a real forensic anthropologist would be like. Not infallible, respectful of others' views. I like Elkins' books because he shares interesting information without making it an info dump, the way some cozies do. His wife is a park ranger, his friend is an FBI agent. They live in ...more
Apr 08, 2016 Sharon rated it really liked it
Good mystery story with lots of twists and turns and takes place on the Big Island in Hawaii.
Roxie Ottley
Dec 03, 2015 Roxie Ottley rated it really liked it
A little confusing.
Aug 11, 2010 Janice rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
Gideon Oliver, invited to visit a ranch on Hawaii, gets caught up in a 10 year old missing person/possible murder case. He, of course, does the amazing by identifying a person from only a foot. The problem is there is too little time spent with the bones for a forensic detective. This just seemed to be a churning out of an old formula. While, Gideon, his wife, and John Lau are nice enough, this just seems to go through the motions. Read one of the earlier books in this series for the real fun.
Oct 13, 2011 Marcia rated it really liked it
Set on the big island of Hawaii, this mystery has some interesting twists and turns. The main character Gideon Oliver adds the forensic information in this quick-moving murder mystery.
Sep 25, 2013 Susan added it
This book reminded me of an old Magnum P.I. episode, not a bad thing, really. Easy to follow story with interesting characters that had lots of beautiful Hawaii countryside descriptions.
Apr 01, 2008 Gail rated it really liked it
Another in a fine series with the Bone Detective, Dr Gideon Oliver, with a brief appearance by wife Julie. A story of a Hawaiian ranch, it's owners and heirs.
Mr. Brewer
May 04, 2013 Mr. Brewer rated it really liked it
Moved a little slower than the other Gideon Oliver books. Intricate plot. Character exposition not as good as usual. Still think Elkins is great though.
Feb 11, 2016 Mary rated it really liked it
Shelves: done
Gideon Oliver is a wonderful character. I love his identification of a 'victim' from the foot left at the scene. This one has a marvelous twist.
Sep 18, 2008 OK rated it liked it
It's a good book, it started slow but got much better. It had a lot more substance than I'd expected, as I got it from a fanatic of romance novels.
Jun 26, 2009 Mike added it
Read during a trip to Kona. Makes you wonder what those old ranching families are up to on the hills above where most tourists visit.
Mary Silvernale Shook
In starting this book I thought I had already read it but it must just be similar to one of his earlier books I have read on Gideon Oliver.
Marielle Durand
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Abbie K.
Jun 27, 2009 Abbie K. rated it it was amazing
Elkins always provides an interesting view of murder and the remains. I love his laidback style.
Jun 12, 2013 Andrea rated it really liked it
Good story, but not as interesting as some of the other books in the series that I have read.
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Aaron J. Elkins AKA Aaron Elkins (born Brooklyn July 24, 1935) is an American mystery writer. He is best known for his series of novels featuring forensic anthropologist Gideon Oliver—the 'skeleton detective'. The fourth Oliver book, Old Bones, received the 1988 Edgar Award for Best Novel. As Oliver is a world-renowned authority, he travels around the world and each book is set in a different and ...more
More about Aaron Elkins...

Other Books in the Series

Gideon Oliver (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Fellowship of Fear (Gideon Oliver, #1)
  • The Dark Place (Gideon Oliver, #2)
  • Murder in the Queen's Armes (Gideon Oliver, #3)
  • Old Bones (Gideon Oliver, #4)
  • Curses! (Gideon Oliver, #5)
  • Icy Clutches (Gideon Oliver, #6)
  • Make No Bones (Gideon Oliver, #7)
  • Dead Men's Hearts (Gideon Oliver, #8)
  • Twenty Blue Devils (Gideon Oliver, #9)
  • Skeleton Dance (Gideon Oliver, #10)

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