Tuesday, 3 November 2009
206 Bones by Kathy Reichs
How many bones?
There are 206 bones in the human body - as forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan knows. Or should, but not if she’s an incompetent flake, as an anonymous caller claims to her bosses.
A long-lost heiress turns up dead, and Tempe supposedly botches the post mortem. Then the only person who can reveal the anonymous caller’s name dies.
This is the 12th Temperance Brennan book. In it, a particularly weird serial killer is targeting old ladies in French-speaking Quebec. A bunch of them have been found, very dead and in a decomposed state, some just skeletons.
Bones! That’s it!
No, the Temperance Brennan in the TV show Bones isn’t based on this series. Actually she’s based on the writer, Kathy Reichs, who is herself a forensic anthropologist.
Wow, that’s pretty circuitous
Tant pis. Temperance is having workmate trouble: a highly ambitious woman whose only lack is, well, qualifications, as well as a stalker who leaves her notes basically saying “Yankee Go Home” - in French, of course. And a seedy spelunker lurks in the lab.
Potholer, normally. Guy who crawls through city sewers, in this case. In other news, Tempe seems to have lost some finger bones, and hasn’t noticed an obvious flaw in a child’s tooth. Canny readers suspect foul play, not incompetence.
Big sellers, these series?
All 11 so far made the Sunday Times bestseller list. This one is a good read, and the story keeps you interested, but there’s a certain feeling of running on the spot - tropes from the earlier books, like sports plane crashes and historic bodies, are repeated here.
Any hot romance?
Tempe’s old romantic interest, Detective Andrew Ryan, is dangling around, but not really on the scene until the end.
A buy, or not?
I’d advise waiting for the paperback.