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Quiet in Her Bones

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  127 ratings  ·  93 reviews
In this gripping thriller set in New Zealand, New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh takes you into the twisted world of an exclusive cul-de-sac located on the edge of a sprawling forest.

My mother vanished ten years ago.
So did a quarter of a million dollars in cash.
Thief. Bitch. Criminal.
Now, she's back.
Her bones clothed in scarlet silk.

When socialite Nin
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published February 23rd 2021 by Berkley Books
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Average rating 4.09  · 
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Nilufer Ozmekik
Nov 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Okay! This is good! This is fascinatingly riveting, twisty, mind spinning!

Unreliable, young, billionaire, fogged minded, broken 26 years old hero who had unhealthy relationship with his mother: the same woman: socialite Nina Rai disappeared with millions a decade ago and now her corpse has been found in the woods. The same clothes she wears the day she had disappeared! That means she never left her family! She had been brutally murdered.

And only person in the family who is dying to find the tr
I have seen QUIET IN HER BONES by Nalini Singh referred to as a crime thriller, a domestic thriller and a psychological thriller. I believe it is all of these. Add in a fantastic first two sentences in the novel and a setting in New Zealand and I was immediately hooked. Aarav Rai’s mother Nina disappeared 10 years ago when he was 16. Most thought she was just another wife tired of her wealthy husband. But not Aarav. Now her bones and car have turned up in a nearby forest. Was it an accident ...more
Chelsea Humphrey
This is a tough book for me to review, because I felt like the meat of the story was really well done and the writing was beautiful, but the pacing was a bit off for me. The inclusion of Hindu culture and the atmospheric aspect gave this story an ethereal quality that is very difficult to pull off, but Ms. Singh does it well. The case at hand was both complex and surprising in its reveal to me, which is always an added bonus. Overall, a solid read that I recommend to readers of slow burning myst ...more
Dec 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook-owned, arc
I'm somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars on this, as it has the amazing Nalini Singh writing, characters, & pacing that I adore alongside a set of tropes that are not as much my favorites. If you like a domestic thriller or an unreliable narrator, I think you will really enjoy this one. I was hoping for more of a small town thriller, so this wasn't as much in my wheelhouse, but I did very much enjoy the execution overall. I continue to be impressed with Singh's outings with this genre ...more
The Cats’ Mother
Quiet in Her Bones is the second of Singh’s stand-alone New Zealand based thrillers. She’s best known for her two paranormal romance series, so this is something of a departure - I’ve read all of the Psy-Changeling books, gritting my teeth through the steamy romance aspects, because she writes great characters and plots, so I knew this would be much more my thing. I wanted to read A Madness of Sunshine but got declined an ARC and never got round to buying it. Fortunately I was approved for this ...more
Tanja ~ T's Book ~ KT Book Reviews
Hang on tight book friends we are jumping right in! With a knock on the door from cops, the mystery has already begun. Quiet in Her Bones is rich storytelling and a phenomenal premise. I was utterly absorbed and transported to New Zealand.

I can smell, see, and taste the forest, the dirt, and the trees. I think that's such an incredible tribute to the author. It's why I am, and will always be, a fan of Nalini Singh. She makes me want to visit this lush vastness of earth filled with scenic views a
nick (the infinite limits of love)
DAMN! I was convinced I knew who the killer was, but Nalini Singh surprised me! Also, loved that the narrator had such a chaotic mind that made him an unreliable narrator. I'm really digging Nalini Singh's mystery/thrillers and I hope she continues to write them.


Content warnings: (view spoiler)
Vanessa Menezes
When socialite Nina Rai disappeared without a trace, everyone wrote it off as another trophy wife tired of her wealthy husband. But now her bones have turned up in the shadowed green of the forest that surrounds her elite neighborhood, a haven of privilege and secrets that's housed the same influential families for decades.

The rich live here, along with those whose job it is to make their lives easier. And somebody knows what happened to Nina one rainy night ten years ago. Her son Aarav heard a
Feb 14, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio2021
An unreliable narrator, a decade old mystery and a cul-de-sac full of suspects, held me captive. It takes a seasoned mystery writer to keep me guessing as to the murderer, and Singh did just that. I felt certain I had this solved, but Singh manged to surprise me.

Laced in the Hindu culture where reputation and appearance is everything we meet Aarav whose family lives in a privilege neighborhood. Their home is nestled in a quiet cul-de-sac that backs up to the woods. It’s a place where the neighb
Jul 07, 2020 marked it as to-read-so-bad-it-hurts  ·  review of another edition
Yes, I'd like to read this thriller by Nalini Singh about a socialite who vanished ...more
Kera (featherboundbooks)
Quiet in Her Bones was a thriller with a promising story but with characters that I simply could not connect with.

Aaray was only a teenager when his mother left with $250,000 in the middle of the night. But 10 years later her body is found in her car in the vast, lushness of the New Zealand forestry in the very same clothing she was last seen in. Now Aaray is a novelist and is absolutely determined to find out who killed her.

This was beautifully written, and I absolutely loved all the cultural h
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
This story was pretty hard to put down at times and I absolutely loved the unreliable narrator! The back and forth from memories to therapy sessions to the present added a nice touch to the mystery aspect and to the overall sense of not being able to trust anything or anyone.

This truly was a lot of fun and one I'm glad I took the time to read.

*ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Feb 22, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quiet in Her Bones is a standalone thriller, set in Auckland, New Zealand. Ten years ago Aarav Rai's mother, socialite and trophy wife Nina Rai, disappeared without a trace when he was only sixteen. She was last seen speeding away from her home in the exclusive Auckland suburb of Titirangi on a dark, stormy night after a vicious drunken argument with Aarav's father, successful businessman Ishaan, and with her, she had taken $250,000 that she retrieved from her controlling husband's safe. Ishaan ...more
Feb 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: diverse, new-zealand
When I started reading this, I didn’t really like Aarav. He seemed like an arrogant jerk. By the end…well, he was still a bit of an arrogant jerk, but I loved him. He was damaged, but he was at heart a good and stunningly straightforward person. He was complex.

And that describes all of Singh’s characters in this book. With a sinuous turn of phrase, Singh turns simple characters into complex ones and manages to weave a plot that is just as complex. And it’s very well done. I think the only thing
Brenda Feinen
Jan 16, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021-netgalley
Ten years ago, Nina disappeared after a vicious argument with her husband. Aarav remembers hearing her scream. And the front door closing. Twice.
His mother's remains are found in her Jaguar - a tomb in the bush. Still healing from a recent car accident- Aarav has a broken leg and a hard hit on his house. Living with his dad to aid his recovery, Aarav becomes obsessed with solving his mother's murder. Vague memories emerge, Aarav begins to question the events of that night.
Wealthy families live
Jan 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
When a body is found in the New Zealand jungle, Aarav, the local police and many others in their pretty cul-de-sac neighborhood re-investigate his mother's long-ago murder. With heavy painkillers possibly affecting his memory, Aarav tries to uncover what really happened the night his beautiful, angry mother disappeared.

This is already a perfect recipe for a twisty murder investigation, where everyone's got something to hide, but what makes this more than a typical unreliable-narrator mystery we
Feb 14, 2021 rated it really liked it


The author takes you on a rollercoaster ride of blackmail, revenge, hallucinations, murders, and deceptions in “Quiet in Her Bones,” and I enjoyed it a lot!

Firstly, Aarav is excellent in the role. He is broken, complex, a bit arrogant, but very interesting. He goes through all his resources to find out what happened to Nina that night. I loved how he suspects everyone, including his family members. I loved his relationship wi
Douglas Meeks
Feb 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
I am a unabashed fan of Nalini Singh but this book was not her best effort. The hero (for lack of a better term) seems to vacillate between brilliant and stupid due to supposed brain injury which leads us to many pages of nothingness and a lot of red herrings because you see everything from his point of view. The book was starting to get boring and repetitive around the 4th chapter and after the 5th chapter I skipped ahead to chapter 45 and the book got really good and I felt like I had missed n ...more
Kathy Martin
Jan 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Novelist Aarav Rai is back living at his childhood home after a car accident the damaged his foot, lungs, and brain. He's not happy to be there. His mother Nina disappeared ten years earlier and his childhood was filled with fights between his parents. He seems to remember hearing a chilling scream when she left home that night but doesn't remember anything else.

Then the unthinkable happens, his mother's car is found off the road in the bush and her bones are in it. Aarav is determined to find o
Reviewed for Wit and Sin

Quiet in Her Bones is a dark, evocative thriller set on the edges of the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park. Ten years ago, Aarav Rai’s mother disappeared without a trace. Now her car has been found in the dense New Zealand bush, her bones the only remnants of the once vibrant Nina Rai. Aarav, recovering from an injury at his father’s house, is determined to uncover who in their small, exclusive neighborhood killed his mother. As Aarav digs deeper into the past the su
Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
Quiet In Her Bones is a twisty and atmospheric slow-burn read that will have readers eager to figure out who is telling the truth and what really happened on that fateful night ten years ago when a woman and a quarter of a million dollars went missing.

Singh is a new-to-me author and I loved that she set her story in her native New Zealand. Throughout the book, she provides vivid descriptions of its beautiful landscape and I appreciated how she scattered tidbits of its different cultures into her
Elaine Tomasso
Feb 10, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Netgalley and Orion Publishing Group for an advance copy of Quiet in her Bones, a stand-alone set in Auckland.

Ten years ago Nina Rai disappeared with a quarter of a million dollars. Her son, Aarav, has always held hope that she was alive but now her bones have been found and he’s determined to find out what happened.

I thoroughly enjoyed Quiet in her Bones, which despite not being my usual fare I found compulsive. It is told in the first person from Aarav’s point of view and
Nov 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid mystery with a wide pool of suspects and an unreliable narrator who keeps you guessing until the very end.

Aarav's mother Nina Rai and $250k disappeared without a trace 10 years ago, but she's now turned up dead in the vehicle she left in the night she disappeared. Aarav, now a bestselling mystery author living at his father's house while recovering from a bad car accident, is determined to solve her murder and avenge her death. He knows the killer must be someone from their exclusive nei
Dec 17, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My mother vanished ten years ago with a quarter of a million dollars, well that is a good way to catch a reader’s attention!

When socialite Nina Rai disappears without a trace everyone writes it off as another trophy wife tired of her abusive wealthy husband.

Now her bones have been found in the shadowy area of the forest that surrounds their elite and gated neighborhood. The neighborhood where everyone is rich and everyone has secrets.

Rich people and all of their staff live here and someone mus
Feb 19, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars - I was given a copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads.

This psychological thriller brings readers a completely new side of one of my favourite Urban Fantasy writers. Instead of fantasy, this book serves gritty suburban realism as it probes the complicated relationships between a group of wealthy neighbours. The story’s narrator is Aarav Rai, a successful crime writer who has returned to his childhood home while recovering from an injury. When his mother’s body is found,
Ruthie Taylor
Feb 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
~~I received a free copy of this book to read and review for Wicked Reads ~~

I have just spent the whole day reading this book, because once I had started there really was no point at which I could put it down. Thank goodness it is a Saturday, and I could forego all normal obligations.

It is a very clever book, which is tense, but never oppressively so. It has you trying to decide what is memory; what is assumption; who can you believe; what twist will come next? There are hints, but there is al
Jan 02, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
I enjoyed Singh’s first suspense but this one didn’t work for me. The setting of the story centered around a neighborhood in a cul-de-sac. I loved the descriptions of the wild New Zealand bush, but I found that there were way too many characters introduced at pretty much the same time. I found myself completely confused about who was who right from the start and this set an unpleasant mood for the rest of the book. I kept flipping back and forth, unsuccessfully trying to keep track of characters ...more
Christine Moore
Feb 06, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This was a really good book with a narrator that you really don't know if you can trust. Aarav was a teenager when his mother disappeared after a fight with his father. Now 10 years later, Aarav is home again recovering from a car accident. While home, Aarav's mother is found. She was killed shortly after leaving the house that fateful night. Aarav is determined to figure out what happened to Nina. Aarav has migraines and suffered a brain injury in the car accident so he is having trouble figuri ...more
Leslie M.
Feb 01, 2021 rated it liked it
This is the first thriller I've read by Singh. Though at times, the pace was a bit slower than I prefer, I enjoyed this book.

It's one of my favorite genres, and I liked the unreliable narrator. The story unfolds via the use of past and present tense, which does keep the reader guessing about what happened to Nina. The writing was solid, and I really enjoyed the setting. I haven't read many books set in New Zealand. I also appreciated the Hindu language references, as well as the delicious foods
Charlotte Pawson
Aarav heard a chilling scream the night his mother disappeared. Now years later her body is found in the car she had left in that night. With no clues Aarav is driven to find what happened that night. His mother and father had a volatile relationship, there was a huge fight. This story brings in many characters living in the Cul De Sac what do you really know about friends and neighbours. Aarav has recently been in an accident which has left him with head injuries and memory loss. He finds it di ...more
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