Sunday, October 22, 2006


Title: Break No Bones
Author: Kathy Reichs

Have any of you ever seen the TV show "Bones"? The main character is a combination of the main character of this series and the author.

Temperance Brennan is a forensic anthropologist (how awesome is that? I'm totally in the wrong line of work...). She has appointments at a university or two, as well as consulting-type positions in various locations like South Carolina and Quebec.

When this book opens (there's a few more preceding it in the series - I'll try to catch y'all up), she's overseeing an excavation conducted by some university students because everyone else the university could potentially drag in left the continent. She's less than thrilled, until a recent skeleton is uncovered.

Fortunately, Tempe's friends with the local coroner, Emma. The two of them start working together to find out what happened to this body. Tempe's staying at her (other) friend's beach house while there, and her friend also tells Tempe's ex-husband, Pete, that he can stay there while he works on an investigation into a missing girl (he's a lawyer).

Then factor in Tempe's current romantic interest, Andrew Ryan, a detective in Quebec, who randomly shows up in town to visit her. There's a rather interesting, competitive dynamic between Pete and Ryan...

And a few more bodies.

And then ties linking Pete's investigation to Tempe's dead bodies.

And then Emma's latent chronic illness really knocks her down. Tempe becomes the de facto coroner for some South Carolinian county. Plus, being nosy, she's investigating the dead bodies and Pete's missing girl, occasionally butting heads with the sheriff.

Then Pete gets shot. Was it really meant for Tempe? Will Pete survive? Why is she so distraught at his injury, since they're no longer together? Why are all these people dying (and how)?

It all gets wrapped up in the end.

If you've ever read a Patricia Cornwell novel, you'll probably like these books. Very detailed and interesting forensic discussions. Honestly, I don't like Cornwell, but for whatever reason these work for me.

While we're at it, I should also mention that Kathy Reich's real life is a lot like Tempe's - she's a working forensic anthropologist, who writes novels in her spare time.

And I'll also recommend books by Gwen Hunter - she wrote a few about an ER doctor that these feel very similar to. More books that make me (briefly) regret my career path because they're fascinating and interesting...


posted by ket at 10:26 PM


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