Title: Bones of Hilo by Eric Redman
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 336 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
From Hawaii’s Big Island to the wilds of Washington’s North Cascades, a novice detective uncovers a hoard of ancient secrets at the heart of a grisly murder.
A young, inexperienced detective from the wet, working-class side of Hawaii’s Big Island, Kawika Wong faces an uphill battle to gain the respect of his more seasoned colleagues. And he has the chance of a lifetime when Ralph Fortunato, the Mainland developer of an unpopular resort on the island’s tourist side, is found murdered on a luxury golf course, an ancient Hawaiian spear driven through his heart.
With the other detectives desperately trying to solve another string of grisly killings, Captain Terry Tanaka has no choice but to send Kawika to investigate. As Kawika joins forces with his father and girlfriend to help read the signs and make sense of the ritualistic murder scene, they uncover a cache of secrets reaching far back to the Island’s ancient past. And the journalist who found the body has her own theories about Fortunato’s demise–but do they line up with the evidence?
On a perilous journey that stretches from the Big Island to Washington State and back, Kawika finds danger at every turn. But he still has much to learn about Hawaii, and about the rugged terrain of the North Cascades. And he’d better learn it fast, because his instincts may not be enough to catch a killer who’s closing in even faster.
Bones of Hilo by Eric Redman is a fascinating mystery which takes place on the Island of Hawai’i.
Detective Kawika Wong grew up on the Mainland but he is now a detective on the Big Island. He is inexperienced and wants to prove himself so he is to solve the case his boss just assigned him to. Ralph Fortunato is an American real estate developer who was murdered with an ancient Hawai’ian weapon.
Kawika has sharp instincts but sometimes has trouble finding evidence to back up his theories. He becomes intimately involved with the woman who found Fortunato’s body. This decision complicates his personal life and Kawika hopes it does not lead to professional trouble as well. Just as he is a little headway in the investigation, Kawika barely escapes death at the hands of an unknown person. In an effort to protect him, his boss sends him to the Mainland where Kawika finds unexpected information about the deceased. But will these new details help identify Fortunato’s killer?
Kawika is a personable young man who is working hard earn his co-worker’s respect. He is intuitive and follows his hunches. He is not making a lot of progress in finding out who killed Fortunato, but he is tracking down every lead. Fortunato’s Chief Operating Officer Michael Cushing appears to genuinely shocked when Kawika informs him of Ralph’s death so he is not high on the suspect list.. A Native Hawai’ian group wants to stop the development from proceeding, but do they have anything to do with the murder? And are Kawika’s discoveries about Fortunato’s business dealings on the mainland relevant to his death on the Big Island?
Bones of Hilo is an engrossing mystery that is rife with interesting Hawai’ian information. Kawika is a multi-faceted character whose flaws do not lessen his appeal. The murder investigation moves at a steady pace as Kawika hunts for Fortunato’s killer. The Big Island springs vibrantly to life and provides an beautiful backdrop for the novel. With unanticipated plot twists, Eric Redman brings this intriguing mystery to a surprising conclusion.