Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

Remains of Innocence (Joanna Brady Series #16)

Remains of Innocence (Joanna Brady Series #16)

4.4 53
by J. A. Jance

See All Formats & Editions

Sheriff Joanna Brady must solve two perplexing cases that may be tied together in New York Times bestselling author J. A. Jance’s thrilling tale of suspense that brings to life Arizona’s Cochise County and the desert Southwest in all its beauty and mystery.

An old woman, a hoarder, is dying of emphysema in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. In


Sheriff Joanna Brady must solve two perplexing cases that may be tied together in New York Times bestselling author J. A. Jance’s thrilling tale of suspense that brings to life Arizona’s Cochise County and the desert Southwest in all its beauty and mystery.

An old woman, a hoarder, is dying of emphysema in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. In cleaning out her house, her daughter, Liza Machett, discovers a fortune in hundred dollar bills hidden in the tall stacks of books and magazines that crowd every corner.

Tracing the money’s origins will take Liza on a journey that will end in Cochise County, where Sheriff Joanna Brady is embroiled in a personal mystery of her own. A man she considers a family friend is found dead at the bottom of a hole in a limestone cavern near Bisbee. And now there is the mystery of Liza and the money. Are the two disparate cases connected? It’s up to Joanna to find out.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A seeming stroke of good fortune for Liza Machett—finding $147,000 in $100 bills squirreled away by her late mother—proves quite the contrary in bestseller Jance's absorbing 16th in the series featuring tough but tender-hearted Sheriff Joanna Brady (after 2012's Judgment Call). As Liza, a Great Barrington, Mass., assistant restaurant manager, tries to stay a step ahead of the arson and murder that start to erupt around her in the wake of her windfall, not to mention hometown cops who consider her a person of interest, there's also a mini crime wave sprouting on Sheriff Brady's turf in Cochise County, Ariz. Right on the heels of the suspicious death of a developmentally disabled senior, found with the remains of mutilated animals, a member of Brady's own team—with a link to Liza—is tortured and murdered. As the dual story lines crisscross and the body count mounts, Jance hits her stride with a suspenseful plot that will keep readers flipping pages until the surprising, if overly convoluted, finale. Agent: Alice Volpe, Northwest Literary Agency. (July)

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Joanna Brady Series , #16
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 7.50(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author

J. A. Jance is the New York Times bestselling author of the J. P. Beaumont series, the Joanna Brady series, the Ali Reynolds series, and five interrelated thrillers about the Walker family, as well as a volume of poetry. Born in South Dakota and brought up in Bisbee, Arizona, Jance lives with her husband in Seattle, Washington, and Tucson, Arizona.

Brief Biography

Bellevue, Washington
Date of Birth:
October 27, 1944
Place of Birth:
Watertown, South Dakota
B. A., University of Arizona, 1966; M. Ed. in Library Science, University of Arizona, 1970

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

Remains of Innocence (Joanna Brady Series #16) 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 53 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I rarely give 5 stars to anything but this book is one of those very few that truly deserve it. The plotline, the writing, the character development- they are all close to perfect. When I finished reading, I just had to sit for a minute in awe. Finding a story like this is why we all read fiction in the first place. I would recommend this very highly. You won't be disappointed. Stephanie Clanahan
Proudmom508 More than 1 year ago
Although it's the 16th book in the Joanna Brady Mystery series, it can be read as a stand alone book or as part of the series. J.A. Jance does a great job of giving you enough background to understand the recurring characters without having read the previous books. This book is two mysteries in one. The first starts in Great Barrington, MA in the home of Cochise County's medical examiner, Guy Machett's step-mother, Selma. Selma's fallen, ended up in the hospital, and later dies. As Guy's sister Liza cleans out her hoarder mother's home, she finds thousands of $100 bills. She doesn't understand where they could have come from or why they're there since she and her family lived in poverty when she grew up. Liza renovates the house prepping it for sale only to have it burn down the day of her mother's funeral. As she copes with that, some of the people in her life are killed and she must get away. Can her big brother Guy help? Back in Cochise County, Sheriff Brady has a different mystery on her hands. Junior, a well-liked developmentally disabled man, is missing. Joanna and her team with assistance from the Bisbee Police and Fire departments must find out what happened to him. I thought J. A. Jance did a great job of writing these two stories and bringing them together. However, I did think there were some loose ends in Liza's story that could have been wrapped up. Overall, I love the book and recommend it. It was a book I had trouble putting down.
SherryF More than 1 year ago
I have read numerous J A Jance novels, so when I saw the opportunity to read and review Remains of Innocence, I jumped all over it. J A Jance writes an amazing mystery of murder, torture, abuse and the evil of human psychopaths. The writing keeps me on the edge of my seat as I try to figure out who is the murderer. I can picture Lisa driving up to the dilapidated house that she had left so many years ago. Her memories are not good – an abusive mother who drove her and her brother away. Her mother had mental problems, not least of which was hoarding. Lisa grew up in poverty and filth. She had been teased at school and called stinky. A teacher stepped in and because of that, her life became bearable – she was able to shower, wash her clothes and had money to buy food That is why, now, her small apartment is spotless. When Lisa’s mother ended up hospitalized, they called her. All her mother wanted was her “Joy To Cooking” book and was adamant about it. That’s how Lisa came to be standing at the door of her old house. A spider crawled on her hand as she retrieved the book and she dropped it. We both hate spiders. Who doesn’t? Money fell out. She started checking all the books and kept finding more. Where had it come from? Had she been using outhouses, no bathing or clothes washing and no food to eat while the money had been sitting there the whole time? Thirty thousand dollars. In Arizona, Sherriff Joanna Brady was called from bed at 5AM to look for a developmentally disabled man. He had climbed out a bedroom window and was nowhere to be found. Joanna had inherited the job of sheriff of Cochise County after her father died. She had proven herself and won the townspeople’s respect. She is married with two kids and pets that all seem to be damaged in some way. I love that her husband, Butch, who is a writer, handles most of the household duties. A man secure in his masculinity. Does he write crime novels? My hubby does the cooking too, so I can relate. When hubby’s not home, like Joanna, a PB&J sounds like a meal to me. In her job as a waitress, Lisa knew people by what they ordered for dinner. They all chipped in to help her clean out and fix up her mother’s house with the money she found. Why would someone burn it down? Now she was on the run. She didn’t know from who, what or why. I love J A Jance’s approach. Remains of Innocence is two separate storylines, until…… The reading is smooth and easy. Just enough suspense, mystery and tension to keep me reading page after page. The characters and plot are detailed and fully developed. No complaints. Even being an ARC, I found few things I would change and they were very minor and grammatical. I am always happy and eager to pick up a J A Jance novel, especially if Joanna is in it. I love her. She takes no crap from anyone. I feel J A Jance tried to trick me with the identity of the murderer. Whoa, a great twist. Where did that come from? No wonder I was vacillating back and forth. Most excellent and I can hardly wait to read the next one.
I_like_clean_reads More than 1 year ago
While I liked this novel by Jance, I also thought the story was pretty dark. Well written, a lot of description, but....dark!
Audell More than 1 year ago
Sheriff Brady never fails to please, can't wait for the next installment in their lives.  I have so enjoyed this series, watching a female character develop over the years.      thei
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a real page turner.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was ok, nice and slow, but good.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well written and very much enjoyed. I had thought you where never going to write about J. Brady again. So very good. A must read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Perfection. One of my favorite authors, she is always new, fresh and clean. One of the best mystery writers of our century. Thank you J. A. Jance, keep up the good work. For ages 16 and up. AD
Anonymous 5 months ago
xxzz 9 months ago
Great book as always, it made me think about what is happening today with kids.
rumisshuggs More than 1 year ago
What a good book. The story centers on Junior's murder. He was found down a raven with dead animals (kittens and small dogs) under him. And Liza who is a waitress in Barrington, MA. Junior is an adult with Alzheimer who is living with an older couple as their son. He found dead after he disappeared from his room and later found at the bottom of the cavern. The Sheriff and the rest of the town do not think that is was Jr. that killed the animals since he has no defensive marks on him. In the meantime across the country we have Liza who didn't have a great childhood and is a waitress at a local diner. Liza's mother is sick and ends up in a hospice where she dies. While cleaning her house Liza comes across a ton of money in books, magazines and other places in the house. Liza's mother dies and at the Cemetery and a man gives Liza a warning stating that her father's old friends never forgets. Liza's father has been gone since she was small. The story moves fast and you are wondering if both of these deaths are connected.
CasualUnclutterer More than 1 year ago
I read mysteries constantly, so when I happened to see this one in the grocery store and it featured a survivor of a hoarding situation, I was intrigued, even though Ms. Jance isn’t an author I prefer. I enjoyed the story – lots of twists, and Sheriff Brady is a great character for me, because I identify as a third-wave feminist. And equally important, while hoarding disorder isn’t truly central to Ms. Jance’s story (I can imagine several other ways she could have introduced the plot element she needed), Ms. Jance wrote her character of an adult child of a person with hoarding disorder with sympathy and imagination. I have volunteered in clearing out homes with hoarding chaos, and I can say that her imagery of the house was evocative of my experiences. All in all, it was a good read!
Virginiaw More than 1 year ago
This was one of the first in this series where I thought you really needed to have read some of the previous books to know what was going on. The story was great and there were many twists and turns that kept me guessing how it would end. Keep up the excellent work.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Normally like books from this author ,but cannot read stories about animal abuse. Had to stop reading after the abuse of the kitten.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am really enjoying this book from Jance involving her Joanna Brady character. Brady is so well developed and Jance writes her so well I feel like I am in her shoes when I am reading a J.Brady novel. Interesting plot which you have not seen 100 times. I cannot wait to see how this one ends!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read all of J.A. Jance Joanna Brady series books. Joanna is my very good friend and I love keeping up with her. J.A. Jance does an excellent job with getting into her characters and the Arizona landscape that you feel you are right there experiencing the day to day trials of Sheriff Joanna Brady, her family and co-workers. I can't wait for Book 17 to come out. If you like mysteries, warm characters and feel good books then try this series.
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
Sheriff Joanna Brady has her work cut out for her as two disparate murders fill her workday in Bixbee, AZ, and another case develops far away on the East Coast that impacts her cases. One murder involves a lovable but retarded man who apparently leaves his home through an open window one night only to be found by Joanna at the foot of an old mine shaft among some dead animals and in the company of a mutilated but live kitten. The other is the ME who is discovered tortured to death when he fails to turn up to do the autopsy on the first victim. The two cases are not related but keep the Bixbee police and Joanna’s Sheriff’s Department hopping. Meanwhile, back in Massachusetts Liza Machett discovers thousands of hundred dollar bills among books and magazines in her mother’s decrepit and cluttered home when the old lady is taken to a hospice, where she son dies. At the funeral, Liza is told by an old man who worked with her father years before that she might be the victim of some “bad guys.” When she returns home, she discovers her landlady murdered. Then weeks later, after she spends thousands to rehabilitate her mother’s home in an effort to sell it, an arsonist burns it down. Thus begins a cross country trip to meet her brother, the murdered ME (of which she is unaware), in an effort to learn more about the money. The various cases obviously intertwine, and so the novel unwinds as the police procedural progresses, accumulating facts, analyzing forensic evidence, and simply moving forward on Joanna’s hunches. The plot speeds ahead smoothly and is suspenseful, especially as to its conclusion. Recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago