Read The Feathered Bone Online

Authors: Julie Cantrell

The Feathered Bone

A
DVANCE
P
RAISE FOR
T
HE
F
EATHERED
B
ONE

“From the beginning, this story gripped me. Julie Cantrell is a wonderful wordsmith, and
The Feathered Bone
offers deep insight.”

—F
RANCINE
R
IVERS
,
N
EW
Y
ORK
T
IMES
BESTSELLING AUTHOR

“Julie Cantrell has done a marvelous job here of telling a story about real people who are confronted with unthinkable loss and hardship, but who rise up from the ashes to become fuller, stronger, and better versions of themselves.
The Feathered Bone
is at once heartbreaking and uplifting, tragic and beautiful. And it is also a book that reminds us that even in our darkest hour, there is still hope, still reason to go on, still reason to forgive, to be alive, and to love.”

—D
AVID
A
RMAND
,
AUTHOR OF
H
ARLOW
AND
T
HE
G
ORGE

“Julie Cantrell is not only a bestselling author, she is also a ground-breaking one. Her latest novel,
The Feathered Bone
, tackles the important topic of human trafficking and how a child abduction impacts the lives of a close-knit community. Through lyrical writing, Cantrell creates a page-turning story of suspense that weighs the strength of faith, forgiveness, and the resilience of the human spirit.
The Feathered Bone
is not to be missed.”

—M
ICHAEL
M
ORRIS
,
AUTHOR OF
A P
LACE
C
ALLED
W
IREGRASS
AND
M
AN IN THE
B
LUE
M
OON

“Emotionally gripping,
The Feathered Bone
will break your heart, but Julie Cantrell's masterful skill as a wordsmith will not leave you broken. If you believe beauty can emerge from devastation, this story is for you. If you don't, this story is for you.”

—S
USAN
M
EISSNER
,
AUTHOR OF
S
ECRETS OF A
C
HARMED
L
IFE

“Julie Cantrell does not hesitate to dive in to the deepest places of the heart. She knows it's all there in our fallen world—the good and bad, love and evil, the brokenness and the healing. In
The Feathered Bone
we meet three best friends who believe that their childhood promises will keep them safe, but when tragedy strikes one of them, they all fall. Cantrell's characters ask of us all—what would you do? How do we recover from the worst we can imagine? A stunning story that takes us through tragedy, heartbreak, and ultimately to both courage and redemption.”

—P
ATTI
C
ALLAHAN
H
ENRY
,
N
EW
Y
ORK
T
IMES
BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF
T
HE
I
DEA OF
L
OVE
AND
T
HE
S
TORIES
W
E
T
ELL

“Only a writer of Julie Cantrell's caliber could craft a story so thoroughly moving. Filled with courage, love, and faith in the most horrifying of situations,
The Feathered Bone
promises to grip you until the last page, and then long after.”

—B
ILLY
C
OFFEY
,
AUTHOR OF
T
HE
C
URSE OF
C
ROW
H
OLLOW
AND
W
HEN
M
OCKINGBIRDS
S
ING

“This is my favorite kind of book. The type of story that dismantles your heart and then puts the pieces back together in better working condition. A powerful tale of devastation and redemption. I loved it.”

—J
AMIE
F
ORD
,
N
EW
Y
ORK
T
IMES
BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF
H
OTEL ON THE
C
ORNER OF
B
ITTER AND
S
WEET


The Feathered Bone
is a rare find, a beautifully written page-turner that left me stunned and breathless. In Julie Cantrell's masterful hands, the horror of Hurricane Katrina becomes a metaphor for the personal tragedies of lives torn apart and patched back together by the power of faith, courage, and love.”

—C
ASSANDRA
K
ING
,
AUTHOR OF
T
HE
S
UNDAY
W
IFE

“What a book with heart. Ms. Cantrell's empathy for the complicated twists and turns of tragedy is woven throughout her new novel. She explores the gray area of simple decisions that come before disaster. This book is by far her best work yet.”

—A
NN
H
ITE
,
AWARD
-
WINNING AUTHOR OF
W
HERE
T
HE
S
OULS
G
O
AND
G
HOST
O
N
B
LACK
M
OUNTAIN

“Startling and suspenseful,
The Feathered Bone
zips along with color and action, but doesn't fail to underscore the issues; for instance, questions of faith, and the perpetual domestic guilt that wives and mothers seem always to feel. Julie Cantrell knows how to tell a story.”

—L
ISA
H
OWORTH
,
AUTHOR OF
F
LYING
S
HOES
AND OWNER OF
S
QUARE
B
OOKS


The Feathered Bone
fulfills every expectation that Julie Cantrell occasioned with
Into the Free
and
When Mountains Move
. It is haunting and hauntingly beautiful, a heart-wrenching story about how one woman, Amanda Salassi, rises from the depths of despair to discover that freedom and miracles do exist. Seeing pure darkness enables her to appreciate the light of love and hope.”

—A
LLEN
M
ENDENHALL
,
S
OUTHERN
L
ITERARY
R
EVIEW

“In a journey through the darkest parts of the spirit, Julie Cantrell provides a near handbook for surviving crushing tragedies. Peppered with colorful characters and places and touching on real-life topics,
The Feathered Bone
is a beautifully written, rawly honest look at human frailty and strength, faith and doubt, and the resilience to keep living.”

—M
ARGARET
D
ILLOWAY
,
AWARD
-
WINNING AUTHOR OF
H
OW TO
B
E AN
A
MERICAN
H
OUSEWIFE
AND
S
ISTERS OF
H
EART AND
S
NOW


The Feathered Bone
is a haunting look at humanity. A ferocious tale of failures and flaws and the necessity of forgiving ourselves and one another. A breathless read from the moment young Sarah disappears from the suffocating crowds at New Orleans's Café Du Monde. Julie Cantrell has expertly captured the unrelenting terror and enduring hope of a community transformed by loss.”

—K
AREN
S
PEARS
Z
ACHARIAS
,
AUTHOR OF
B
URDY

“Julie Cantrell, like all brave writers, puts her protagonist Amanda Salassi through unimaginable loss. And like all great heroes, Amanda battles to the brink of her own destruction . . . to be saved, ultimately, by her own enduring faith and love.”

—N
EIL
W
HITE
,
AUTHOR OF
I
N
THE
S
ANCTUARY OF
O
UTCASTS

“Powerful and riveting. As a therapist who works with women in destructive marriages I was encouraged to see this topic explored without the ‘just try harder' solution many women receive.”

—L
ESLIE
V
ERNICK
,
COUNSELOR
,
RELATIONSHIP COACH
,
SPEAKER
,
AND AUTHOR OF
T
HE
E
MOTIONALLY
D
ESTRUCTIVE
M
ARRIAGE
AND
T
HE
E
MOTIONALLY
D
ESTRUCTIVE
R
ELATIONSHIP

“Julie Cantrell confronts the horrors that hide in the shadows of our modern world with love and grace. I read this novel in a great inhalation, and maybe it was the tenacity of her heroine, or the gamut she runs, from awful sadness to revelry and redemption, that kept me clinging to this story of real people in painful circumstances.
The Feathered Bone
reminds us of the value of letting in the light.”

—J
AMIE
K
ORNEGAY
,
AUTHOR OF
S
OIL
AND MANAGER OF
T
URNROW
B
OOK
C
OMPANY

© 2016 by Julie Cantrell

All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, scanning, or other—except for brief quotations in critical reviews or articles, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Published in Nashville, Tennessee, by Thomas Nelson. Thomas Nelson is a registered trademark of HarperCollins Christian Publishing, Inc.

Published in association with the literary agency of WordServe Literary Group, Ltd., www.wordserveliterary.com.

Interior design by James A. Phinney

Thomas Nelson titles may be purchased in bulk for educational, business, fund-raising, or sales promotional use. For information, please e-mail [email protected]

Scripture quotations are taken from the
Holy Bible
, New Living Translation. © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

The “Beatitudes of a Christian Marriage” are courtesy of the plaque in the Blind River Chapel near Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Author is unknown.

Publisher's Note: This novel is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either products of the author's imagination or used fictitiously. All characters are fictional, and any similarity to people living or dead is purely coincidental.

ISBN 978-0-7180-3763-5 (eBook)

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Cantrell, Julie, 1973-

The feathered bone / Julie Cantrell.

pages ; cm

ISBN 978-0-7180-3762-8 (trade paper)

I. Title.

PS3603.A597F43 2016

813'.6--dc23

2015028781

16 17 18 19 20 RRD 5 4 3 2 1

For the people of Livingston Parish, no matter where adventure leads me, my story always begins with you.

For Carol, Chris, Gina, and Kerri, you have taught me the power of true “sister friendship.”

For Teresa and the entire Murray family, thank you for calling me one of your own. Carry the torch. Pen a happy ending.

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