Posted on 2010-03-24, updated at 2010-06-16. By anonymous.
When the bones of a woman are discovered in the grounds of an abandoned monastery, Dr Temperance Brennan of the Laboratoire de Medecine Legale in Montreal is convinced that a serial killer is at work. The detective in charge of the case disagrees with her, but he is forced to revise his opinion.
Death Du Jour
"In Quebec, winters can be slow for the forensic anthropologist. The temperature rarely rises above freezing. The rivers and lakes ice over, the ground turns rock hard, and snow buries everything. Bugs disappear, and many scavengers go underground. The result: Corpses do not putrefy in the great outdoors. Floaters are not pulled from the St. Lawrence... and some of last season's dead are not found until the spring melt."
Violence is escalating, and spilling onto the streets of Montreal. A nine-year-old girl is killed in crossfire on her way to ballet class. The body of a teenager killed in North Carolina is found hundreds of miles away. Forensic anthropologist Dr Temperance Brennan has to pick up the pieces: she knows she shouldn't let emotion get in the way, but when nine-year-old Emily's body is wheeled into the morgue she cannot help but react. An exhumation uncovers the bones of another inocent in a clandestine grave close to a biker gang headquarters. With her boss in hospital and sparring partner Detective Andrew Ryan mysteriously unavailable, Tempe alone begins a perilous investigation into the lawless underworld of organised crime...
When forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan joins the Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team mobilized to investigate an airplane crash in North Carolina's Smoky Mountains, she literally stumbles on a body part that doesn't match up with the remains of any of the plane's passengers. The leg she grabs out of the jaws of a coyote feeding on the carnage scattered around the site belongs to an unidentified elderly man, and seems to have no connection with the disaster. But an abandoned hunting lodge near the crash site does, although before Tempe can figure out exactly how they're linked, she's pulled off the DMORT unit and forced to stand idly by as her professional reputation goes up in flames. When Andrew Ryan, a detective familiar to readers of Kathy Reichs's earlier books (Deja Dead, Death du Jour, Deadly Decisions), appears on the scene, another mystery begins to unfold. There seems to be no trace of two men on the plane's manifest, Ryan's partner and his seatmate, a criminal who was being escorted back to Canada via Washington, D.C., the doomed flight's final destination, to stand trial for murder.
Dr. Temperance Brennan, forensic anthropologist for the medical examiners in Montreal and North Carolina, departs from home turf to journey to Guatemala, where her skills will be tested to the limit. It was a summer morning in 1982 when soldiers entered the village of Chupan Ya and rounded up the women and children. Families and neighbors refer to their lost members as "the disappeared". The bodies are said to lie in a mass grave. Tempe brings all her skill to uncover the savagery of the past. But something savage is happening today. Four girls are missing from Guatemala City, including the daughter of a high-ranking government official. When a young archaeologist is brutally murdered, Tempe realizes that she may be the next victim in a web of intrigue that connects the historical and contemporary murders.
It's a summer of record-breaking heat in Charlotte, North Carolina and Dr Temperance Brennan is looking forward to her first vacation in years. She's almost out the door when the bones start appearing. First there's the newborn skeleton found in a wood stove. Who put the baby there? The mother, hardly more than a child herself, has disappeared. Next, a small plane flies into a rock face on a sunny afternoon. Both pilot and passenger are burned beyond recognition, their bodies covered with a strange black substance. What could it be? What sinister mission might the two have been on? Most puzzling is a cache of bones unearthed in a remote corner of the county. Some animal, some human, the bones are enough to keep Tempe busy for a long time. All the pieces of the mystery seem to lead back to an isolated farm. But what happened there and who will be the next victim? Tempe must find the answers by teasing secrets from the bones - if only she can decipher them in time... A superb new thriller from the number one bestselling author of Grave Secrets.
Forensic scientist Tempe Brennan isn't happy: it's freezing in Montreal, her detective boyfriend is giving her the cold shoulder and her macho colleagues won't take her seriously. When Reichs's heroine is called in to examine three skeletons discovered in the basement of a pizza parlor at the start of the seventh installment in this popular series, her instincts tell her a crime was recently committed. Chauvinistic homicide detective Luc Claudel doesn't agree, but Tempe forges ahead and soon discovers that the victims are young women, probably teenagers killed sometime in the 1980s. Already feeling vulnerable because she's left her beloved daughter, Katy, back home in North Carolina, Tempe is further troubled by the indifference of formerly avid lover Andrew Ryan (another Montreal detective). Meanwhile, new developments lead Tempe and her reluctant colleagues to suspect a creepy former pawn store owner of serial kidnappings, torture and grisly murder. What's best about Reichs, and often unappreciated in reviews, is not the informative detail that she brings to Tempe's forensic sleuthing, though that's certainly engrossing. It's the same well-observed detail and incisive analysis applied to other aspects of the story. Tempe deconstructs Ryan's every evasive gesture and casual comment and describes an ominously darkened room, the glow from a UV light and an armada of snow plows with vivid precision. Here, as previously, readers will be as invested in Tempe's life as in her case.
Forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperance "Tempe" Brennan gets caught in mysteries past and present when she's called in to determine if illegal antiquities dealer Avram Ferris's gunshot death is murder or suicide. An acquaintance of Avram suggests the former: he hands Tempe a photograph of a skeleton, taken in Israel in 1963, and insists it's the reason Avram is dead. Tempe's longtime boyfriend, Quebecois detective Andrew Ryan, is also involved with the case, so the duo head to Israel where they attempt to solve the murder and a mystery revolving around a first-century tomb that may contain the remains of the family of Jesus Christ. This find threatens the worldwide Christian community, the Israeli and Jewish hierarchy and numerous illegal antiquity dealers, any of whom might be out to kill Tempe and Ryan. Not that Tempe notices. She has the habit of being oblivious to danger, which quickly becomes annoying, as does Reichs's tendency to end chapters with a heavy-handed cliffhanger ("His next words sent ice up my spine"). The plot is based on a number of real-life anthropological mysteries, and fans of such will have a good time, though thriller readers looking for chills and kills may not find the novel quite as satisfying.
Break No Bones
It's the second-to-last day of archaeological field school. Dr Temperance Brennan's students are working on a site of prehistoric graves on Dewees, a barrier island north of Charleston, South Carolina, when a decomposing body is uncovered in a shallow grave off a lonely beach... The skeleton is articulated, the bone fresh and the vertebrae still connected by soft-tissue; the remains are encased in rotted fabric and topped by wisps of pale, blond hair - a recent burial, and a case Tempe must take. Dental remains and skeletal gender and race indicators suggest that the deceased is a middle-aged white male - but who was he? Why was he buried in a clandestine grave? And what does the unusual vertical hairline fracture of the sixth cervical vertebrae signify? While Tempe is trying to piece together the evidence, her personal life is thrown into turmoil. When a bullet - intended, perhaps, for her - puts Tempe's estranged husband Pete in hospital, her unexpectedly emotional response complicates her on-off relationship with Detective Andrew Ryan... But before long, another body is discovered - and Tempe finds herself drawn deeper into a shocking and chilling investigation, set to challenge her entire view of humanity...
Bones To Ashes
The cold case of a missing Quebec girl becomes a very personal quest for Brennan when she discovers that the bones in question probably belong to a childhood friend-a figure of fascination and sophistication who suddenly disappeared from Brennan's life at the age of 15.
Dr. Temperance Brennan's quest to identify two corpses pits her against citizen vigilantes intent on a witch-hunt in bestseller Reichs's exciting 11th thriller to feature the forensic anthropologist (after 2007's Bones to Ashes). While working in Charlotte, N.C., Brennan investigates remains unearthed during a housing renovation and discovers disturbing clues possibly pointing to voodoo or Santeria. She must determine if the bones, including the skull of a teenage girl, are linked to an unidentified headless torso found in a nearby lake. Intent on using the deaths as the cornerstone of his crusade against immorality, fundamentalist preacher turned politician Boyce Lingo claims that the bodies bear the mark of devil worshippers. With the help of Det. Erskine Skinny Slidell, Brennan unearths a tangled web of dirty politics, religious persecution and male prostitution.
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