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Cover Reveal: WHEN THE BONES SING by Ginny Myers Sain

From New York Times bestselling author of Dark and Shallow Lies comes a new southern gothic supernatural thriller about a teen girl in a small Ozark town who can hear the bones of the dead. When the Bones Sing by Ginny Myers Sain is coming to shelves March 4, 2025!

The past three years have been tough for Lucifer’s Creek, Arkansas, a small town quietly tucked away in the Ozark mountains. More than two dozen people have disappeared on the local hiking trails; there one moment, gone the next, not a trace left behind, until their buried bodies are discovered.

17-year-old Dovie doesn’t believe in magic even though she comes from a long line of women who can hear the bones of the dead sing, and for the past few years the bones have been crooning nonstop, calling out to Dovie to dig them up.

Some of the old-timers believe that it’s the monstrous Ozarks howler snatching people off the Aux Arc Trail. Well Dovie doesn’t believe in the howler, and she doesn’t believe her best friend Lo when he tells her he is being haunted by dark shadows. All she believes in is her talent that guides the local sheriff to the bones when they begin their song, then reuniting the dead with their families to give them some peace.

Lo doesn’t know peace, though. The shadows follow him everywhere. He soon learns they’re the murdered hikers and they want answers. But the truth of their deaths isn’t buried with their bones; it’s hidden somewhere deep in the hills. And Lo and Dovie must unearth it before anyone else is killed.

Scroll down to see the cover and read a sneak peek. Preorder your copy here!

Cover art & design by Kristie Radwilowicz

The first time I pulled a skeleton from the ground, I wasn’t even four years old. I’d wandered away from a church picnic while Daddy sat in the shade turning the crank on our old ice cream maker and mopping sweat from his forehead with a faded red bandana. Nana found me on my hands and knees just inside the tree line, chubby fingers plunged deep into the rich, black dirt. Dovie, girl, she had scolded. You can’t be takin’ off like that. It’s danger— She froze when she saw me holding a pale finger bone out to her like a prize in an Easter egg hunt. Then her eyes caught fire and she opened up wide enough for me to see clear down her throat when she threw her head back and hollered, “Del! Come look what Dovie’s got! Come see what our girl can do!”

Daddy left the ice cream to melt and scooped me up quick as summer lightning. In one move, his strong hands knocked the bone from my fingers and the damp earth from the front of my dress, and I wailed as he carried me back home.

“Like her mama, God help her,” my Sunday School teacher whispered as we passed. “And her grandmother.” The words wormed their way into my ear, even over the sound of my own shrieking.

“Cryin’ for the dead,” one of the old men added. There were always a handful of them gathered like crows outside the little coffee shop on Mud Street. And the rest agreed like a Greek chorus.

But they were all wrong. I wasn’t worked up over whoever that finger belonged to. I didn’t understand enough back then to weep for someone who was only bones. Somebody I didn’t know, besides.

I was crying because I knew I wasn’t gonna get any of that strawberry ice cream Daddy had been churning. And I’d had my mouth set for it so bad.

I must have been dreaming about that day, because I wake up craving the taste of fresh strawberries cold on my tongue. But as soon as I sit up in bed, I know wha it was that pulled me out my dreams, and it wasn’t the memory of ice cream I didn’t get thirteen years ago.

My teeth are chattering louder than the shuddering air conditioner propped  up in the attic window. My whole body is humming. Vibrating at a familiar frequency.

I can feel the dead deep in my bones.

Not all of them. Just one particular soul tonight.

Someone is pissed as hell, and he’s strumming my ribs like a harp. Sliding his fingers up and down my spine like my back- bone is the neck of a guitar.

Or a banjo.

That trembling is coming from somewhere outside. It’s seeping into my attic bedroom and soaking into my skin. I throw off Nana’s thick quilt and tiptoe across the creaking wood floor. I stand in the pitch black, willing myself not to peek.

Not to feel what I know I’m feeling.

But the music of the bones gets too loud, and I part the dusty lace curtains to peek out over the air conditioner at the sliver of a moon hanging low above a row of dogwood trees at the dark edge of town.

Out toward the woods beyond our house. Toward the hills.

And the dead.

Down below me, on the front steps, someone clicks on a flashlight and shines it up in my direction. The light bounces off the window glass, and I shield my eyes from the sudden glare.

“She’s up,” Sheriff shouts. “Time to move.” He reaches over to shake the deputy who’s dozing beside him, slouched against our porch railing like an old hound dog at the end of a long hunt. They’ve been posted up out there every night for two months.

Since the latest hiker went missing.

Nana is already knocking on my bedroom door. “Dovie?” She doesn’t bother to keep her voice down, which tells me Daddy must not be home. “Can you feel it?”

“Yeah,” I say. “The bones are playin’ their song.”

Penguin Teen