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Forensics and Fiction: Clever, Intriguing, and Downright Odd Questions from Crime Writers Hardcover – 7 Aug 2007

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books,US (7 Aug 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312365519
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312365516
  • Product Dimensions: 14.1 x 3.2 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,648,390 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Authors

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Product Description


"Indispensable . . . Don't even think of writing a medical mystery without the wise counsel of Dr. D. P. Lyle."- Lee Goldberg, author of the Diagnosis Murder and Monk novels "A terrific resource for crime writers and anyone interested in forensics . . . will jump-start your imagination about all kinds of ingenious crimes, crime-solving techniques, and plot twists."- Matt Witten, supervising producer of the Fox TV show "House" "Every crime-fiction author's best friend . . . as essential to my library as my Strunk and White."- Hallie Ephron, author of "Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel" "There's damn good reason why Dr. Doug Lyle's e-mail is in every crime writer's address book and why his reference books belong on every aspiring writer's book shelf: His advice comes from the head of a medical expert but also from the heart and imagination of a writer. Whenever I paint myself into a forensic corner, Dr. Doug is always there to rescue me."- P. J. Parrish, author of "An Unquiet Grave"

About the Author

D. P. Lyle, M.D., is the Macavity Award-winning and Edgar Award-nominated author of the nonfiction books "Murder and Mayhem: A Doctor Answers Medical and Forensic Questions for Mystery Writers, " a compilation of the most interesting questions he has received over the years, and "Forensics for Dummies, " an in-depth look into the world of forensic science. Dr. Lyle is a practicing cardiologist in Orange County, California, and has worked as a story and technical consultant with many published authors and with the writers and producers of several popular television shows, including "Law & Order, CSI: Miami, Diagnosis Murder, Monk, Judging Amy, Cold Case, Peacemakers, House, Medium, "and "1-800-Missing." Through his Web site, the Writer's Medical and Forensics Lab (, Dr. Lyle works with writers and readers to enrich the authenticity of stories they write and read.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I write crime stories for a hobby, ideal for somebody who are writing for fun.
Some of the questions asked, are very bizarre.Yes I would recommend it to any budding writers out there. Well done for such an interesting book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 19 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
A valuable resource for writers and an entertaining book for readers 4 Sep 2007
By David Montgomery - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Nothing ruins a good crime novel faster than factual errors or logical mistakes. That's why so many writers turn to Dr. D.P. Lyle for help. A practicing physician, Lyle is a writer himself, and he helps his colleagues figure out inventive (and accurate) ways of doing mayhem to the human body. "Forensics and Fiction" collects some of the most interesting questions Lyle has answered. Want to know how long a human head immersed in the North Sea would remain recognizable? This is the place to look. Not only is the book valuable for all the useful, obscure information it contains, it's also fascinating to see what kinds of questions writers ask. (Some of them, as you might expect, are rather strange.) "Forensics and Fiction" is an excellent resource for writers and an entertaining, informative read for fans.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Great resource 26 Aug 2009
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of those books you don't just sit down and read. It's a reference book that you reach for when you come to a bump int the road during your manuscript.

I've already found it quite useful ih my writing and I recommend it to anyone who is writing mystery, suspense, thriller-type fiction.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Fun and fact filled book 5 May 2011
By Angelus1967 - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to write mystery fiction and even to those who are just interested in how the human body reacts to different stressors. Most any way that you could think of to kill someone is here as well as pleanty of information about what happens to the body after death occurs. Freat reference material for writer and reader alike.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Helpful and insightful 10 Mar 2009
By R. BULL - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a writer i've used Dr Lyle as a resource several times. I highly recommend him and all of his books. I this one in particular because I have a question in it that resulted in a short story sale.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great book for writers and everyone else! 17 Dec 2009
By Deborah McGrane - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Forensics and fiction is a unique, fact-filled book that is both enjoyable and informative. The book consists of questions submitted to the author about various aspects of murder: for instance, how long will forensic evidence last on a corpse that is under water, how long can someone survive after an automobile accident in a desert, can any drug cause amnesia, and so on and so forth. Dr. Lyle's answers are informative, yet completely entertaining at the same time. This book is a wonderful reference book for crime and mystery writers, but I think the subject matter is so interesting, and the questions so varied, that almost anyone would find it an enjoyable read. Highly recommended.
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