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A Borrowing of Bones: A Mystery

(Mercy & Elvis Mysteries #1)

by
3.94  ·  Rating details ·  1,359 ratings  ·  289 reviews
First in a gripping new mystery series about a retired MP and her bomb-sniffing dog who become embroiled in an investigation in the beautiful Vermont wilderness
It may be the Fourth of July weekend, but for retired soldiers Mercy Carr and Belgian Malinois Elvis, it’s just another walk in the remote Lye Brook Wilderness—until the former bomb-sniffing dog alerts to explosives
...more
Paperback, 464 pages
Published August 27th 2019 by Minotaur Books (first published September 11th 2018)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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Liz
Nov 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio

What’s better than a book that involves one working dog? One that involves two! We have Elvis, a retired military dog with PTSD, whose pet parent, Mercy, is also retired military. Also, Susie Bear, a Newfie lab mix who works with her pet parent, Troy, a game warden. All four are great foundation characters for the series. It works well that Elvis was initially partnered with Mercy’s fiancé, who has died and Elvis and Mercy and still finding their way together.

The story involves a baby found in
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Ian
There is a lot to love in this book.

There are dogs, characters you love, a well written story...did I mention dogs?
I love that the writer has written a mystery that for the most part has no guns (I sometimes think that writers who go to the gun show a lack of imagination).

It's not perfect. It's a little rough around the edges. The writer chose to devote the last chapter to explaining all the things which probably should have been revealed throughout the story. But it's so close to 5 Stars.

This
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Brenda
Aug 12, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Brenda by: Kelly
Thank you, Kelly, for recommending this book to me.

The main character, Mercy Carr, is a former MP who served in Afghanistan. Her fiancé was killed in Afghanistan, and now back in Vermont, she has his K9 partner, Elvis. I could not avoid making comparisons to Barbara Nickless’s series featuring Sydney Rose Parnell, a veteran of the Iraq war who also lost her fiancé and has his K9 partner, Clyde. The plots are different, and in my opinion, the Nickless series is better written with more defined
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Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Mercy Carr and her Belgian Malinois, Elvis, are out on their usual hike in the remote Lye Brook Wilderness when Elvis sniffs out a very unusual finding. A baby abandoned near a shallow grave filled with human bones. U.S. Game Warden Troy Warner and his search-and-rescue dog Susie Bear responds to Mercy's 911 call. Who left the baby there, and who's in the shallow grave?

READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW OVER AT FRESH FICTION!
Veronica
3.5.stars

This is what it felt like to engage with the world, to care what happened next, and to whom. This was dangerous. But this was living.

This is a promising start to this new series. It's not great but it wasn't bad either. It's set in and around Northshire, Vermont and features Mercy Carr, a retired M.P. from the Army, and Elvis, the bomb sniffing dog she inherited from her fiance who was killed in combat. It's been a year since that loss, a year since Mercy returned to her hometown to
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Paul
May 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Borrowing of Bones is a solid thriller with some fresh characters. This is a good start to a series, especially for an animal lover who likes a quick thriller.

Thank you to NetGalley, St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books, and Paula Munier for the advanced copy for review.

Full review can be found here: https://paulspicks.blog/2018/05/06/a-...

Please check out all my reviews: https://paulspicks.blog
Paris        (kerbytejas)
Aug 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2018
Ok, so I’ve just finished my 2nd feel-good book in a row – it must be the four-legged characters that have such wonderful roles in the stories. A Borrowing of Bones (Mercy Carr #1) by Paula Munier is an outdoorsy, mystery, that includes murders, art, a missing mother & child, great M/F leads, Shakespearean quotes, and two of the best dogs around. The combination of the human leads and their dogs made the story fun. I also felt that Mercy’s grandmother Patience as the vet and awesome cook ...more
SheLove2Read
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, best-of-2019
I really enjoyed this!

Mercy Carr is a former MP (military police), medically discharged home to Vermont after surviving a terrorist attack in Afghanistan that not only killed her fiancee, it gave his service K9 the canine version of PTSD. She successfully fought for and won the right to keep the dog, the very charming Malinois named Elvis, and now they are learning to traverse life together without the one they both loved. It's during one of their walks in the woods that they discover an
...more
Edwin Hill
This excellent debut, and first in a series, follows former MP Mercy Carr as she deals with the grief of losing her fiance while caring for his bomb-sniffing dog Elvis. The story line in this well-plotted novel keeps the pages turning, but what will bring you back for the next in the series are the characters, especially canines Elvis and Susie Bear, who are given prime time on the page without being cloying or unrealistic. If you love dogs - real dogs - you'll love this book.

The setting,
...more
Val
Dec 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think one of the reasons I liked this book as much as I did is because it was a nice change of pace from the last two books I read, which were rather dark and depressing. (The Tattooist of Auschwitz and The Bone Yard) I didn't find A Borrowing of Bones to be particularly suspenseful or dramatic. In fact, the plot was a bit convoluted and there were sooo many implausible intuitive leaps. BUT! Ohhh ... the DOGS! I totally fell in love with Elvis (a Belgian Malinois Shepherd who is a former ...more
Jeanne Adamek
Jan 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars
Marina56
Jan 08, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book has everything except the one thing it needs most. It has a beautiful young protagonist with a tragic past and a great dog. It has a love interest for the protagonist, who has a great dog of his own, and that dog is female, so even the dogs have a love interest. The protagonist, as I said, is young, "retired" from the army in her twenties, with a pension and sufficient accumulated savings to permit her to buy a nice house and live without a job. (Really?! In what universe?) The ...more
Jaksen
Jan 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fair read, but one I thought would be better than it was.

First off, what's not to like about the two MC's? Both attractive young people with great back stories. Mercy Carr is a former MP, did a tour in Afghanistan, returned home with her fiance's Malinois shepherd, a wonderful, explosives-seeking dog with a touch of PTSD. Unfortunately, Mercy's fiance didn't return home; he died in Afghanistan.

The other MC is Troy Warner, Vermont game warden with a dog of his own, a rescue
...more
Darlene
Dec 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very enjoyable book. All of the characters were very well written, but for me the two dogs were the highlight of the book. Mercy’s dog is Elvis, a retired explosive sniffing dog who did his work in Afghanistan. The second dog is Susie Bear, a search and rescue dog belonging to Troy, a Vermont Game Warden. Both dogs are truly amazing.
Another character is Patience, the lovable town vet, who happens to be Mercy’s grandmother.
I highly recommended this book to all dog lovers and mystery lovers.
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Patti
I really enjoyed this debut with a former servicewoman and her dog, who both are suffering from PTSD. Elvis, the dog, was trained by Mercy's fiance, who died in Iraq, one year before the setting of this book. Speaking of setting, this book also introduces the reader to Vermont, which seems to be beloved as a character too. Mercy meets a Game Warden, Troy and his dog, Susie Bear, and this foursome is a formidable group. They catch the bad guys, and have an excellent ending. Hopefully they will ...more
Lynn
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mercy Carr is a retired MP. She is back home in Vermont with Elvis, a bomb sniffing dog who worked with her fiance. Her fiance died in action and Mercy has ownership now of the traumatized dog. They are learning to be partners. She and Elvis are out for a walk in the Vermont woods. They discover a baby who they rescue and take to a hospital.

Several bodies are found. Mercy and Elvis team up with Troy who is a fish and game warden who also has a service dog. Troy is warned several time to stay out
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Carol Bisig
Sep 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I wish this book had never ended! This book is my perfect Mystery! The handsome Game Warden, the retired female M.P., with her bomb-sniffing dog, Elvis! Witty, fast-paced dialogue, in-depth character analysis, I wanted to live there, meet these people, help with the hunt for the killer! Great ending, everything a great mystery book should be! It will be in the top 25 of Best Books this year on my blog! I cannot wait for the next installment! Please hurry! I am madly in love with Troy, and his ...more
Owl._.
May 20, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think this has the potential to be a really good series. However, when comparing it to similar books/series of the same genre and theme, most notably the Alex Kava Creed series, I can honestly say it doesn't measure up. There was something missing. It didn't pull me in or keep me excited; I found myself able to put it down several times over the last few days. I didn't feel that urge of "I have to know what happens". I really just wanted to finish it to see how it ended. I will give the next ...more
Lesa
Sep 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Paula Munier's debut mystery, A Borrowing of Bones, has everything. It's fast-paced and intense, engrossing with an atmospheric setting in the Vermont woods. For those of us who read for character, though, it's outstanding. Mercy Carr, a veteran of two tours in Afghanistan, and State Game Warden Troy Warner, make an interesting pair of investigators. But, they're not on their own. They each have a rescue dog that is also a K9 working dog. Dog lovers will fall for Elvis, a bomb-sniffing Belgian ...more
Bella's Books
Dec 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The dog found the baby and the bones.
The Mercy woman helped a bit.
The Mercy woman likes the Troy man.
Lucy Burdette
Dec 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very enjoyable first in a new series--the dogs really shine, and the humans are appealing too.
Cathy Cole
Sep 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've quickly become hooked on mysteries featuring working dogs-- especially military or police dogs. I think it's because the bond between human and dog is so strong and because the dog's capabilities are extraordinary. When I learned of this first Mercy and Elvis mystery, I knew I had to read it, and the only thing I can say now is that I can't wait to read the next book in the series.

A Borrowing of Bones is fast-paced and well-plotted, with a mystery that keeps readers guessing. Munier also
...more
Shelby
Feb 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3 stars for the dogs, the rest of the book literally did nothing for me. I hate giving bad reviews I want to like every book I read but we all know that is never going to happen. With that being said I wont read the next in the series even thought Elvis was the book.
Amy
Oct 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
A good kick-off to a new series!

The human characters are engaging, but the dogs steal the show!
Mary Brown
Jan 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Borrowing Of Bones
Mercy and Elvis Mysteries, Book #1
Paula Munier
5 Stars


Synopsis:

First in a gripping new mystery series about a retired MP and her bomb-sniffing dog who become embroiled in an investigation in the beautiful Vermont wilderness
It may be the Fourth of July weekend, but for retired soldiers Mercy Carr and Belgian Malinois Elvis, it’s just another walk in the remote Lye Brook Wilderness—until the former bomb-sniffing dog alerts to explosives and they find a squalling baby abandoned
...more
Darcy
This one really grew on me the more that I read it. I felt for Mercy, who was struggling to find her place in life after loosing everything. Elvis seemed to anchor her, gave her something to focus, but It think Mercy's musings at the end about Elvis was the best thing about this book. Here she thought she was there for Elvis, to help him get better, but it turns out Elvis was there to help her get better.

The mystery with the baby, the missing mother and the art kept me guessing. I liked that by
...more
Minx
A Borrowing of Bones was a great series starting book, although I didn't think of it as "gripping." Mercy and Elvis' backstory was a sad one but it did endear me to the characters right away. Even though Elvis is a dog, he had personality and is very memorable. I loved the relationship development that took place between Elvis and Mercy, they came a long way in this story.

U.S. Game Warden Troy Warner did not endear himself to me at the start but he did grow on me.....eventually. I liked that he
...more
Quillracer
There seems to be an uptick in demand recently for books featuring search and rescue dogs. Alex Kava and Margaret Mizushima have series going, and now Paula Munier has joined them with the story of a retired soldier caring for a retired military dog, both traumatized by the death of the man they loved in Afghanistan.

There also seems to be more books set in small towns and rural areas – a good thing in my opinion as the world does not cease to exist beyond the city limits of New York, Chicago,
...more
Donna
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Borrowing of Bones is a wonderful start to a new series of mysteries. Mercy and Elvis may be down but they aren’t out by any stretch of the imagination. I loved watching them solidify into a team. Mercy is smart and stronger than she knows. I really liked the terrific cast of supporting characters and really look forward to visiting again.
Kelly
Jul 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
A promising start to a new mystery series.
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Saucy Wenches Boo...: A Borrowing of Bones [August 2019] 10 7 Oct 23, 2019 12:13AM  

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PAULA MUNIER is the author of the bestselling Plot Perfect, The Writer’s Guide to Beginnings, Writing with Quiet Hands, and the acclaimed memoir Fixing Freddie. The first novel in her mystery series, A BORROWING OF BONES (Minotaur, 2018) was inspired by the hero working dogs she met through Mission K9 Rescue, her own Newfoundland-retriever-mix rescue Bear, and her lifelong passion for crime ...more

Other books in the series

Mercy & Elvis Mysteries (2 books)
  • Blind Search (Mercy & Elvis Mysteries #2)
“Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau, Emily Dickinson and Robert Frost, even John Irving. All the literary kings of New England, who understood the pull of the moon, the lure of the woods, and the solace of solitude.” 0 likes
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