New York Times best-selling author Kathy Reichs returns with her 16th riveting novel featuring forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan, whose examination of a young girl killed in a hit and run in North Carolina triggers an investigation into international human trafficking.
When Charlotte police discover the body of a teenage girl along a desolate stretch of two-lane highway, Temperance Brennan fears the worst. The girl’s body shows signs of foul play. Inside her purse police find the ID card of a prominent local businessman, John-Henry Story, who died in a horrific flea market fire months earlier. Was the girl an illegal immigrant turning tricks? Was she murdered?
As the case deepens, Tempe must also grapple with personal turmoil. Her daughter, Katy,, grieving the death of her boyfriend in Afghanistan, impulsively enlists in the Army. Meanwhile, Katy’s father, Pete, is frustrated by Tempe’s reluctance to finalize their divorce. As pressure mounts from all corners, Tempe soon finds herself at the center of a conspiracy that extends all the way from South America, to Afghanistan, and right to the center of Charlotte. "A genius at building suspense" (New York Daily News), Kathy Reichs is at her brilliant best in this thrilling novel.
©2013 Kathy Reichs (P)2013 Simon & Schuster
I've read all of the Temperance Brennan books so far and this one is definitely sub-par. It seems as though Ms. Brennan spends way too much time reflecting about stuff. This isn't really a spoiler but it does tell something about the story. At one point she goes to Iraq and sees her Marine Corps daughter (someone that she also thinks about a lot). She manages to disinter two bodies, get buried by the debris of a bomb hit and dug out, do her forensic investigation, write a report, get debriefed and fly back to the States to testify at a military hearing about her findings. All this zips right along but then she's back home ruminating about her cat or why she doesn't have any food in the house. Really, no food, well here's a clue - buy some. Do I care about her food problem, not a little tiny bit. Does this have anything to do with the plot? No, but it seems to be a recurring theme throughout this book. Poor Tempe, no food in the house, oopsie, she forgot to eat for 3 days. I exaggerate, but that's what I remember from the book and I don't think that's what I should be taking away with me.
And then there's the ending...well, suffice it to say that if I hadn't already slogged through the rest of the book, I wouldn't have bothered with the last 75 minutes, I was that angry. I won't tell you how it ends, but I will tell you that I do not appreciate it when an author insults the reader and takes the lazy way out by suddenly pulling out the stupid stick and smacking the main character with it, not once but several times, just to "set up" the ending. Am I really supposed to believe that our heroine is so intelligent that she can figure out this rather complex mystery instead or ahead of the police and yet act so irresponsibly and brainlessly as does Ms Brennan at the end of this book? Is her inability to find a grocery store or restaurant supposed to be the ultimate excuse for her inexcusable behavior? Is lack of food a legal defense for trampling on the Constitution? Frankly if she behaved this way in most jurisdictions she would've been arrested and rightfully so.
I used to love these books. I couldn't wait until the next one came out. But the last couple of books lacked any substance. The story wasn't compelling. Also the writing which is mostly question and answer style, got too repetitive and boring.
Spoiler Warning: In this particular story the fact that ALL of the various story lines came together was just too far fetched for me. I had figured out what was the problem with "Candy" early in the book and just waiting for Tempe to get it.
I love the Ryan character and the fact that he made a cameo in this book also irritated me.
Anyway, I'm done with the Tempe books. I'll use my time with something that is entertaining.
Micron the Cat
I have loved all the books in this series and would buy again IF Linda Emond is not the narrator - she's horrible.
Didn't get past the first hour, so no idea.
It would be, if the narrator wasn't so bad.
Gonna buy this on Kindle instead.
I just started reading the Temperance Brennan series this summer. I devoured the first fifteen, and was eagerly awaiting the release of "Bones of the Lost". It is difficult to assign this installment a specific rank among my favorites, but I will definitely re-read it, probably more than once. The only other books I've looked forward to re-reading so enthusiastically have been 206 bones and Bones to Ashes.
In this installment we see a stronger, more resilient Tempe. Just when I thought the character was growing somewhat stagnant, Reichs delivers a dramatically complex plot, complete with a myriad of professional and personal pitfalls Tempe must navigate. In the process, she reveals several new avenues that this series could explore, and, as usual, delivers one terriffic mystery!
Don't let the publisher's summary fool you. While Tempe's divorce from Pete does figure into the plot, the author focuses more on the challenge she faces disentangling the small details of her life from her long-time spouse than she does on the "will she or won't she sign?" question. The big interpersonal challenge Tempe faces in this novel is conveyed more by the absence of a certain familiar detective from active participation in most of the book--but when he does eventually show up, watch out!
Is this book the pinnacle of literary creativity and story-crafting ingenuity? No, not really. But is it a fun, fast-paced book that will leave you waiting for the next novel in the series? You bet!
I like spending time with Tempe. I wish that there was more emphasis on the forensic archeology as in earlier books,
I don"t like when Tempe puts herself needlessly and foolishly in danger. She never seems to learn from the past.
Yes. Linda Emond is a decent reader. I preferred the previous reader.
Yes. Reread a early Kathy Reich"s book.
I like the interaction with her daughter Katie in the Middle East. I also like Ryan a lot and hope that now they can get back together.
The story was pretty good.
A good detective novel. The least is that I didn't think I was buying a detective novel.
A good performance doesn't make you think you are listening to a performance. She did a good job.
Don't make a film of this book.
What has hooked me in the past about the Tempe Brennan novels is the fact that she's a forensic anthropologist. Not a detective. I loved Tempe's reviewing of the body, it's location, what she discovers. Kathy Reichs sometimes got a bit too detailed, but basically, it's Tempe's job that interested me. In this book, there's very little of her forensic anthropologist part of her life. She seems to have forgotten exactly what she does for a living. In this book, she mostly plays detective alongside a bumbling, painfully difficult to get in touch with homicide detective.
A previous review made mention of the fact that Tempe can be something of a snob, and I have to agree. Anyone less education and intelligent than herself seems to cause Tempe to look down her nose at those in more menial occupations or life situations.I listened to this on Audible and was wondering, did we ever find out what happened with her cat? Maybe I missed it.
I have loved the Tempe Brennan books and will probably give it one more shot. I hope Reichs goes back to what made these books popular.
Fair, Fair, Fair
There are absolutely no memorable characters.
This may be the worst book I have wasted time on. It was poorly written. It was virtually impossible to follow. The performance was fair at best.
No. I like Tempe's forensic anthropology work and this one was more detective work.
Hmmm, probably not this one, but I recommend many other Kathy Reichs books to my friends all the time.
I have not read the print version.
I liked Tempe's relationships with the other male characters.
Tempe rides again
A fun mystery that kept the reader guessing.
Two notes on the audiobook, then a review of the book as a whole.
For me, Linda Emond is the voice of Temperance Brennan; she handles voices of other characters well; the pacing is great and her voice is pleasant.
I enjoy the essay that appears at the end of the more recent books in this series. This was added to just one of the audiobooks--and is missing from this one. I think it should be added to the recorded material. (Switching back and forth between the audiobook and Kindle book, I read the essay at the end of the latter.)
As an aside, Whispersync is great--love the ability to switch back and forth between audio and e-book.
A fan of Kathy Reich’s books (though not the related television series), I enjoyed Bones of the Lost. The book’s plot, complexity and cast of characters kept me engaged, and I enjoyed its diverse settings for the action. I appreciate the way the author grounds her stories in interesting factual material—the product of research and of her own experiences as forensic anthropologist, and as someone who traveled to Afghanistan at the behest of the USO “to thank our troops for their courage and dedication.”
As ever, I found the narrator, Tempe Brennan, relatable, apart from her inclination to rush into dangerous situations—particularly her intelligence, and an inclination to introspection that tempers her the effect of her impatience on readers, if not on the fictional recipients of brusque interactions. The relatable aspects of her life—connections with relatives and pets, with her ex; the way her fridge ends up bare as mine does when we are busy—ground the drama, make it easier to relate and care when her actions seem rude or reckless; more readily accepting of improbable coincidence.
As one who read this book as part of a series, I enjoyed the continuing evolution of the characters in this book, particularly the evolving relationship with Skinny Slidell. Slidell is sometimes comical in his pretensions, often repellant due to poor grooming and other rough edges, but this seems secondary when he demonstrates effectiveness in his work as a detective, willingness to work with Tempe when she goes beyond the boundaries of her official role, and tolerance when she is rude. I can also relate to daughter Katy’s transformation after joining the U.S. Army; I’ve seen and experienced the effect that military service can have on previously-aimless young people. Katy still clearly loves her mother and enjoys her company, but is increasingly independent, appropriate as she is in her mid-twenties. And Pete, reliable, caring ex-husband (possibly officially divorced, possibly not), apparently over his mid-life fling with a much-younger woman, though there have been others. Andrew Ryan's brief appearance was enough for me--I'm not much of a fan of his so far.
From my perspective, this book succeeds as entertainment. I also appreciate the opportunity to further consider issues related to human trafficking, as well as the experiences of deployed members of our armed forces.
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