Garrett is attempting to settle down with his fiancé Tinnie Tate, but there is a problem. Tinnie, in the pursuit of an “ordinary life” had forbidden Garrett to visit his friends, especially friends of the female persuasion. Garrett is doing his best to placate Tinnie, but his attempts do not ease the strain or Tinnie’s insecurity. In addition, most of what Garret is doing by way of business is security work for Max Weider, and does not provide much of a challenge.
When someone attempts to kidnap Tinnie, Garrett finds himself back in business. The trail leads him to the discovery that his friend Morely Dotes had been stabbed.He decides to ignore Tinnie’s anger, and investigate both the stabbing and the attempted kidnapping of his fiancé.
Belinda Contague and the Windwalker Furious Tide of Light both turn up, at least partially involved in the case. Belinda is first, wanting Morely to be protected while she tries to find out whom she needs to kill. (I would say “knock heads” or something, but Belinda is the kind of person who cuts out the discussion, and gets right to the point where the nearest river becomes a waste disposal facility when she’s angry.) Garret immediately gets the feeling that Morely has forgotten his advice about dating. After some further assassination attempts on Morely, involving tentacles and poisoning, he’s taken to Garret’s previous residence for safe keeping. The Windwalker’s presence is personal…on at least two parts. The first is that something mysterious, extremely illegal and possibly involving her daughter is happening on the hill, and the second is that she has kind of taken a shine to Garrett.
Gilded Latten Bones has a different layout than previous novels. Garret is in the background more or less receiving information instead of going out and mostly knocking heads together until something falls out. (Or the Dead Man patiently pulls out and organizes the information that Garret has managed to gather.) Most of Garret’s involvement from the middle-out,instead of from out-in. (In other words, he’s more or less in the position the Dead Man was in in previous story lines, though the Dead Man also makes his usual information collating contributions. Pular Singe is much more in charge in this book (since the house and agency mostly belongs to her now, since Garrett is supposed to be getting married.) Garret backs down a lot for Singe, does not try to take over the house/business, and enforces “Singe is her own person,you want to her to work, ask her, not me.” (In the previous novel, Cruel Zinc Melodies, he somewhat acted as a manager or mentor concerning tracking missions.)
In the course of the adventure there are continuing arguments with the police, and also Prince Rupert. (Though Garret gets yelled at a lot for smarting off too much–by his friends.)
I am not sure if I like the “Tinnie Tate is insane, so Garrett gets a new girlfriend who can play detective with him,” B story here. I liked how the courtship played out, and that he didn’t go into his usual flail about sorcerers (as much.) On the other hand, Garret has a clear admission that Tinnie’s relationship issues are somewhat his fault (the reasoning of “how” is a little flawed–of course, Garrett is a pretty flawed individual.) It’s interesting this time around that his friends are more or less approving of his new relationship over his original one with Tinnie Tate. (Mostly I think because Tinnie is being unreasonable and outright nasty about Garret’s friends.)