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Close to the Bone (Widow's Island, #1)
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Close to the Bone

(Widow's Island #1)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  2,660 Ratings  ·  195 Reviews
FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde is back home on a remote Pacific Northwest island when she gets the call: a teenager’s skeletal remains have been found on a nearby island.

Together with Tessa Black, a childhood friend turned local deputy, Cate confronts dreary weather and bleak leads to make sense of the death. The complications pile up as Cate is distracted by the coroner on
Kindle Edition
Published October 23rd 2018 by Montlake Romance
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Oct 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Close to the Bone by Kendra Elliot is the first book in the new romantic suspense Widow’s Island series. This series is all at novella length and penned by Kendra Elliot along with Melinda Leigh by alternating the books. This pair of authors have teamed up in the past for the romantic suspense Rogue River series of which a couple of the characters have moved over to this series but the books can be read and enjoyed separate from the Rogue River series.

This first book introduces FBI Special Agent
☕ Kimberly
Sep 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've been enjoying Elliot's FBI series, Mercy Kilpatrick and was curious about her Rogue River series of novellas written with author Melinda Leigh. So when I got the chance to review this new series by them I jumped in. I am so thrilled that I did. Right now there are four books slated; Close to the Bone, A Bone to Pick, Whisper of Bones, and Bred in the Bone. They are all available in KU, Kindle, and it looks like Audible.

In Close to the Bone, FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde has returned to her c
Oct 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Close to the Bone was a fun, quick read with an interesting mystery plotline and I enjoyed it quite a bit.

FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde is back home on remote Widow’s Island while she recovers from an injury sustained on the job. In the middle of the night she gets a call that bones have been found on a nearby island and with the ferry from the mainland down, Cate is the only agent close enough to work the case. Cate quickly begins to see similarities between this victim and her best friend who h
Kendra Elliot and Melinda Leigh are regular collaborators.
There must be a dozen books in the Rogue ... series. Most of them are around 100 pages so they're a long way from weighty tomes.
They've put that series to bed and have returned with the Widow's Island series. Set on an island loosely based on San Juan and the surrounding islands in Washington State it follows an FBI agent on the island to recover from a gun shot wound and a police officer. While the authors do share characters, Kendra E
Oct 03, 2018 rated it liked it
I love craft beer and real ale. If is often a real delight to sample a drink that comes about through the combined efforts of two separate breweries.
Switching to my joy of reading. When I learned that two established and talented writers were working together on a new novella series I wanted to read them early and was grateful to receive advanced reader’s copies of the first two books.
This is number one with the addition need to set the series and establish a sense of place its inhabitants. I fo
You can find this review in English below.

Este relato corto es el primero de la serie y promete.
Como siempre, la señora Elliot mezcla de maravilla el suspense y las relaciones personales. En esta ocasión el formato no permite que la trama tenga suficiente complejidad, todo pasa muy rápido y falta desarrollo, aunque es interesante. Existe otra trama paralela que queda sin resolver y que parece que se extenderá a lo largo de la serie.
El romance se queda en la primera etapa, esa de conocerse y pas
Carla Johnson-Hicks
Close to the Bone by Kendra Elliot is the first book in the new romantic suspense Widow’s Island series. This is a series written by Kendra Elliot and Melinda Leigh, with them alternating books. They are all novellas, yet read like a full length story.

This book introduces the reader to FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde. She was suffering from a gun shot injury and came home to Widow Island to recuperate. Her recuperation is cut short when a skeleton is found on a nearby island and she is the only ag
This wasn't Kendra Elliot's best novella, but it wasn't bad either. There was decent character and setting development and I'm interested in reading more about this place. The romance was barely there, and that's ok, too, since I know there are future installments to enjoy. Overall, a decent beginning to a novella series.
Terri ♥ (aka Mrs. Christian Grey)
Not the best of the co-author novella series, but it’s the starter. There is world building to add in a short book. The wrap up of the mystery happened too fast, and I didn’t feel the explanation was enough though it was. I don’t know. Hard to explain. It felt as though it came out of left field.

I didn’t really feel the romance connection. Like there wasn’t that spark for the slow burn to come. We were told, but I didn’t feel it.

I think it was because the author wasn’t given enough word count
Nov 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: no-ow-drama, safe
This was a good start to the series! Interesting characters and good suspense! I would have loved for it to be longer!
Oct 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, mystery-cozy, novella
Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) provided by the Author and Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an fair and honest review.

Book #1 in the Widow's Island Novella Series is a wonderful look at the life of an island off to the Washington State coast. It is also a great little cozy mystery that, while short, packs a lot into its' pages. I loved the previous collaborations of these two authors, Kendra Elliot and Melinda Leigh, and all their standalone, individual books. This short novella has a mystery,
RachelW (BamaGal)
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
Interesting read, if short. Very short, maybe 90 pages. I've read another novella series written by Elliot and Leigh, so I pretty much knew what to expect. The investigation-lite in this one was wrapped up; but there is an overarching plotline concerning a longtime disappearance and probable murder that will wind through the series, however long it might be. I liked FBI Agent Cate and Sheriff's deputy Tessa; but found Henry as the town doctor to be a bit in the Beta side.

Enjoyed it well enough t
Cindy ~ SnS Reviews
Sep 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
The dynamic writing duo is back with a new series that takes place on remote Pacific Northwest island. I just devoured both of these books loving the setting, getting to know the new characters along with the suspense in addition to an overarching plot mystery I am sure will take the whole series to solve.

Close to the Bone introduces us to FBI Agent Cate Wilde who has just recently returned home to Widow's Island after an injury on the job put her on medical leave. She's not back long before sh
Under the Covers Book Blog
Oct 22, 2018 rated it really liked it

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde has come back home to Widow's Island after receiving a gun shot would. Cate's always had mixed feeling about her home, she loves the island, but it has a mix of good and bad memories. Her ending up in law enforcement is no coincidence. Cate, Tessa Black, who is now a local deputy and Samantha were a tight knit trio wh
Oct 15, 2018 rated it liked it
Really enjoyed the book! My only complaint- I wish it was longer!!! Loved the story, characters and writing style. I enjoyed getting to know the characters and can't wait until Cate and Tessa start looking into what happened to their best friend.

FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde is back at her grandmother's home recuperating after being shot. Home is a remote island in the Pacific Northwest, which doesn't always have reliable ferry service to the mainland. Cate is supposed to be on medical leave, bu
Oct 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Fast read, good story line, just wish it was longer - not a fan of novellas, but this one was pretty good. The characters are likeable for the most part. A small town where everyone knows your name and business - how irritating is that! Enough of the back story is given on the main characters to keep your interest. The story does wrap up mostly, but still leaves you wanting more in the next installment, which I hope is a full novel.

From the blurb: FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde is back home on a r
Oct 31, 2018 rated it liked it
First I’d like to make clear that I listened to this book, probably only reading 15% of text.

Also, the only reason that I couldn’t give a 4 star review is due to the fact that things moved slower than I prefer- or perhaps it just seemed like that to me. When things started to really happen at a faster was over. Thankfully there will be another book in The Widow Island series.

The island history, ancestry, culture, and it’s story is entertaining & I liked that part, that there was m
Pelusa Rivera
Oct 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Rcvd an ARC at no cost to author..(netgalley) I was pretty excited to the collaboration of these authors..I like Kendra Elliott and have been a fan of hers for years and then we have Melinda Leigh who takes the other part. in next book..Anyhoo it was exciting, suspenseful and you need to grab, we have FBI Agent Cate who is back in Widow's Island to recover from injury but does not stay down since she is back and joining a case that will have her joining her friend Deputy Tessa Black..Good my fri ...more
Benjamin  Thomas
Oct 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Bestselling author Kendra Elliot kicks off a great beginning to the Widow's Island series! This was so well written it didn't really seem like a novella. It had all the necessary elements of a full novel complete with mystery, suspense, crime, character, and a touch of romance. I thought the idea for the Widow's Island setting was genius; the culture, secrets, history of families, it made the story very appealing. 
Velvet Messer
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a great start to what I'm sure will be a fabulous new series! As always Kendra didn't disappoint with this excellent novella. The characters are wonderful and the storyline is beyond superb. This little novella has everything you can possibly want in a mystery/thriller. My only complaint is that it's not long enough. I would love for this series to be full length novels. It's just so damn good. But what do you expect it's Kendra freaking Elliot! I'm so, so excited for this series and to see ...more
Oct 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: elliot-kendra
Oh. Such a tease! This is going to be another good novella series by Kendra Elliot!
Anna's Herding Cats

Reviewed for herding cats & burning soup.

Close to the Bone was my first time with Elliot. And, oh, yall, I enjoyed it! I picked it up because I have been loving Melinda Leigh. They co-write this series and Leigh writes book 2. So a new author to try. And she was fun!

The Gist: Cate's been sent home to the island she grew up on to recuperate after being shot on the job. But during her down time...bones are found and with no one able to travel to the island she's
Nov 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this (too short) taste of this new series. There is lots more to learn about the mysterious Cate and the how's and why's of her return to Widow's Island. Her old friend Tess is present but barely involved in this novella and the new doc in town appears to be headed for an important role series as well. I'm hooked. Bring on the novels.
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I’m a huge fan of Kendra Elliot and Melinda Leigh and when they get together to produce these novellas boy are you in for a treat !!!! I absolutely Loved Close To The Bone it had me hooked from the start I loved the whole Island setting and the Lighthouse and digging in the dark with torches at night and the ghost of Ruby it gave it all such a spooky atmosphere and really added to the book and for some reason from the very beginning Cate reminded me of my very first favourite detective Nancy Dre ...more
Maureen ~Bitch Can Write A Book

I tried to make it last, but I was so invested in the murder and the characters. I have yet to read a book by this author I didn’t devour.

Great plot, characters that suck you right into their orbit, and this especially had great scenery. I wanted to see the lighthouse and the island. Giving into the next!
Kathy Martin
Oct 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
FBI Special Agent Cate Wilder is back home on Widow's Island recovering from a gunshot wound to the shoulder and the loss of her partner when she gets a call to check out some bones on Ruby's Island. Since the ferry isn't running, no other agent can get there.

This is rather traumatic for Cate since her best friend disappeared when she was fourteen and Cate and Tessa have been feeling guilt ever since. Both Cate and Tessa went into law enforcement and now Tessa is back home working on Widow's Is
Niken Widyastuti
Oct 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Widow’s Island was not the first novella series from the duo Kendra Elliot and Melinda Leigh. Before this was The Rogue River series. I always love the duo’s books, including the novella series. And this one was no different.

The series took place in Widow’s Island, homeland for our 2 heroines, best friends from childhood. The story revolve around the mystery of a missing girl 2 years back. And she was not the first missing girl. Cate and Tessa, our two heroines, lost another best friend, the fir
Oct 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you NetGalley for the ARC of Close to the Bone by Kendra Elliot that I read and reviewed.
This was this first novella for the Widow's Island series that is a collaboration between Elliot and Melinda Leigh. I really enjoyed this novella that kept me guessing and I felt it was a great introduction to the series.
I loved the budding relationship between Cate and Henry and can't wait to see where that goes. I am also very interested in Samantha's disappearance and I can't wait to see how Care an
Diane Saul
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book introduces FBI Special Agent Cate Wilde. Cate has returned home to recover from being shot on the job. Bones are found on Ruby’s Island. The daughter of the only resident of the island disappeared 2 years ago. Cates childhood friend disappeared 20 years ago when she was 14. Do the bones belong to one of the missing women?

This is book 1 of a new series by Kendra and Melinda. Some of the characters from the Rogue River series appear in this book. It is a good suspense read. I loved Cates
Nov 05, 2018 rated it liked it
It was an extremely fast listen. It didn’t have a whole lot of the meat and grit of police work/FBI work. That is why it was so short, it more oh the ‘killer’ has come out to play. Here is the murderer. Which made the story so fast-paced near the end. You literally had no clue what was going on, why it was going on until everything came to a head.

I really enjoyed how Cate is damaged, both physically and mentally. She not superwoman but an ordinary woman with her own past, her own issues. Her rel
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An Amazon #1 selling author, Kendra Elliot has sold over 5 million books. Get a free insider's guide to Kendra's books at

She grew up in the lush Pacific Northwest and still lives there with her family and three cats. She's fascinated with forensics, refuses to eat anything green, and dreams of living every day in flip flops.


Other books in the series

Widow's Island (4 books)
  • A Bone to Pick (Widow's Island, #2)
  • Whisper of Bones (Widow's Island #3)
  • Bred in the Bone (Widow's Island #4)
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