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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Monday Mourning, Kathy Reichs
Reichs is no Cornwell, but occasionally she does produce a book reminiscent of the mistress of forensic thrillers at her best. Monday Mourning is not quite that level - think Cause of Death rather than All That Remains, perhaps - but it's still a nice snappy thriller, very satisfying and her best book in a couple of years.
If you've read and liked any of her other...
Published on 16 Jun. 2004 by RachelWalker

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Good main story, but the rest... (spoilers!)
First of all, let me say that I quite liked the principal story line in this book. It was quite interesting, had some believable red herrings along the way, tied in nicely with some relatively current events, and aside from the unnecessarily detailed explanations of the Stockholm syndrome, would have deserved more than three starts.
HOWEVER... The whole reset of the...
Published 17 months ago by MaPe


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Monday Mourning, Kathy Reichs, 16 Jun. 2004
By 
RachelWalker "RachelW" (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Monday Mourning (Hardcover)
Reichs is no Cornwell, but occasionally she does produce a book reminiscent of the mistress of forensic thrillers at her best. Monday Mourning is not quite that level - think Cause of Death rather than All That Remains, perhaps - but it's still a nice snappy thriller, very satisfying and her best book in a couple of years.
If you've read and liked any of her other Tempe Brennan thrillers you won't be at all disappointed with this one. The standard Reichs ingredients are all here: bones, mystery, the contentious detective Luc Claudel, relationship troubles with other detective Andrew Ryan. Add to the pot, simmer gently whilst stirring occasionally. She doesn't break any moulds, not even her own, but she doesn't try so at least she doesn't fail. Instead, a reader knows exactly where there are here; exactly what they're in for.
Monday Mourning - oh for the days of first two books when her titles were gloriously bilingual, not these bad puns of late (I'm aware that decisions, voyage and grave are all of French origin, but they're such pathetic attempts they don't even register) - kicks off when three bodies are found buried in the basement of a pizza parlor. Montreal detective Luc Claudel, ever-antagonistic toward Brennan, assumes they're old and begins to write them off. Big mistake, of course; after all, if it weren't there'd be no plot. Some 19th century buttons found near the bodies strengthen Claudel's assumption. Brennan, though, is certain they're recent, and some diligent investigation (alright, well, sending some samples off to another lab) proves her right.
Primarily, congratulations Ms Reichs: you have graduated top of the class from the Jonathan Kellerman school of one-sentence paragraphs. At times, I like the device; it's chatty and invigorating, and the structure has a nice way of tumbling you through the narrative. At others, it can annoy me intensely; not least because it acts as a barrier to the story achieving much depth, but also because it doesn't lend itself to the explanation of what's been going on, as it allows only a very simplistic extension of ideas. This becomes a problem when Reichs throws multiple plots together and it all gets a little convoluted, and the result is a potentially unfathomable situation. Thankfully, here that doesn't become a problem as she keeps very sensibly to a single main plot: the bones, who they were and how they got there.
Once again, it's all satisfyingly forensic. However, it must be said that she doesn't do her science explanations as brilliantly as Cornwell. With Reichs, you often get the impression she's lecturing at you like a class of students. There's a formal structure to her elaborations on things, but at least it gets the job done. At one point she has Brennan explain the salient points of carbon dating to her own boss, who I'm sure should really know, making it clear that it's just an excuse to talk at the reader.
Although sometimes I think I shouldn't, I really like Reichs' books, and this is one of the most pleasing so far. Thrilling, clever, with an annually warm and human heroine in its protagonist Brennan (who only occasionally gets a little too "Bridget Jones - Anthropologist" for my tastes), Monday Mourning is going to be another Reichs success.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A vastly improved writer., 15 July 2004
By 
ch0pper "ch0pper" (SOUTHAMPTON, Hampshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Monday Mourning (Hardcover)
I admit that I have struggled with Kathy Reichs in the past. I know others have rated her highly and compared her to Patricia Cornwell, but I failed to see any comparison.
Reichs' failings, I felt, lay in her plotting and dialogue. Her characters always seemed very one-dimensional and uninviting, even though she had come up with some promising storylines. Reichs' previous efforts have, to me at least, been very artificial and amateur, clunky and awkward.
However, with Monday Mourning Reichs has transformed herself. Her characters suddenly have depth and believability; better, their dialogue has become life-like as the author has discovered (or uncovered) her ability to write funny, sardonic, sarcastic and sometimes ironic lines for her characters to deliver. Suddenly, I found that I laughed out loud at odd points when reading. Not real belly laughs as you get with Tom Sharrpe, but nonetheless some very witty moments to be enjoyed.
The plot is good. It is almost beleivable (I'm still not totally convinced about forensic anthropologists being called in so early in investigations) and we can see why the heroine, Brennan, has been involved. We see her struggle with the sheer evil that confronts her in this book. Indeed, the evil that is the main story in the book will take your breath away when it's uncovered.
So, all in all, a much improved writer showing some real skill at last.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Back To Canada, 7 July 2004
This review is from: Monday Mourning (Hardcover)
After lazing around the American South for a couple of books, this one finds Tempe back in Montreal. The book starts well, with Tempe involved in a case almost from the first page. There follows an irritating section when she is giving evidence and has to prove her credentials as an expert witness. I suspect Reichs felt it was time to remind readers exactly what Tempe is and how she qualified to do her job: this section has no real connection with the remainder of the book.
The action is swift and smooth. Tempe's continual on/off relationship with her Canadian police officer continues, but not quite as obtrusively as in recent books.
Inevitably, our heroine gets too closely involved with her case and finds herself in personal danger. Reichs must be close to running out of plausible reasons why a forensic anthropologist keeps getting beaten/kidnapped/threatened with a violent end.
I carp. This is a good read, which moves Tempe Brennan along and provides much excitement on the way.
Recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Bones and a puzzle, 2 Mar. 2015
By 
Anne (Sheffield, Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Three bodies are found under the floor of a pizza parlour in Montreal and Tempe is called in to investigate what might have happened. As a forensic anthropologist her job is to look at bones and give the investigators the information that they need. In every one of this author's novels Tempe goes much further than that and takes an active part in the investigation often putting herself in peril - this book is no exception. This stretches the credibility a bit far but it makes the story.

Tempe is convinced that these bones are more recent than the investigating officer is prepared to accept. While tests are taking place she starts to dig around into the past of the building where the bodies were discovered and even to interview suspects. There is a lot of tension between herself and the investigating officer which becomes quite acrimonious on occasion. Tempe is also dealing with the visit of a very depressed friend and the strained relationship between herself and Andrew Ryan.

Once you've suspended a bit of disbelief about Tempe's role the story progresses nicely with some excellent red herrings and some good action sequences. The author emphasises the forensic stuff by having Tempe explain a lot to her colleagues but there isn't too much of this and I was able to grasp the implications of it all - her colleagues do appear to be a bit dense though if I know about carbon dating I would have thought that Tempe's boss would not have needed to have it explained !

This is enjoyable stuff with an interesting puzzle and some good action. This is definitely one of the better books in this series.
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4.0 out of 5 stars PAINSTAKINGLY EDGING TOWARDS THE TRUTH, 1 Feb. 2014
By 
Mr. D. L. Rees "LEE DAVID" (DORSET) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
In a Montreal cellar the skeletons of three females. Whose and for how long have they been there? Much probing lies ahead for forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan, whilst officer Luc Claudel snorts with impatience. Such work is not to be hurried, however insistent his demands for quick answers.

Some readers may share Claudel's craving for speedy action, but they are missing the point. The series is based on actual procedures. This is their strength, where everything rings true. Only when something more dramatic is attempted is credibility put to the test. (As with the obligatory dangerous go-it-alone finale and in-the-nick-of-time rescue.)

Much continues to impress, especially the descriptions of places and people, characterization firmly etched. Fans will be pleased Andrew Ryan is still around - he laid back and quick to tease, but a boon when action is needed. (Is there, though, now another woman in his life, Temperance with competition?) Also appealing is the love affair with Montreal (both for Temperance and writer Kathy Reichs) - this put to the test in winter months where current investigations are chillingly set.

Disconcertingly the grim eventual revelations are not far removed from actual events. In fiction and fact, when minds are perverted, there is no limit to depravity.

Another engrossing read for those prepared to accept the basic premise. Forensic investigations rely on painstaking procures, cases less likely to be solved by a collection of high speed adventures.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good main story, but the rest... (spoilers!), 27 Oct. 2013
By 
MaPe (St. Paul, Minnesota USA) - See all my reviews
First of all, let me say that I quite liked the principal story line in this book. It was quite interesting, had some believable red herrings along the way, tied in nicely with some relatively current events, and aside from the unnecessarily detailed explanations of the Stockholm syndrome, would have deserved more than three starts.
HOWEVER... The whole reset of the interpersonal relationships that takes place in the beginning of each new book is *really* getting annoying. Claudel is back big time. The guy who practically wrote her fan mail at the end of the first book could just as easily be the guy from the *beginning* of the first book. Or any of the books in between. Ryan... come on. This time she couldn't try to convince us that they hadn't yet "done the deed", but this whole soap opera bickering thing? And then the "twist" of the explanation and everything's fine? The guy has been lying by omission for months, and they're just two peas in a pod again? Not to mention that such an omission is not even consistent with the usual dynamics of their relationship, be it professional or personal. They use each other as sounding boards for just about everything that happens. Moving on... The book actually got points while I was reading it for making me believe that Tempe's friends and/or family weren't going to be placed in direct danger because of the case for a change. Yeah, right. And as for Tempe herself... come on, the bad guys come after her personally *again*? How likely is that? And even assuming that we only hear about the "interesting" cases during which this happens, how come no suspect ever breaks into other people in the lab's houses or takes them hostage?
All in all... I like the series and I like the Tempe character. But series are built on character development and keeping the loyal reader (or viewer)'s interest. If there is no character development from instalment to instalment (I don't mean within individual books, there is some of that) and there is no variation in the plot, the interest is bound to wane. I know it's happening to me.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Excellant book from Kathy, 17 Jun. 2004
By 
Y. Gillespie "ymg666" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Monday Mourning (Hardcover)
Having read all of her previous books, I was eagerly awaiting the new book. I sat and started reading the day i received it, and finished it the following day. The plot was well written and the central characters developed a little more. The ending was unexpected and quite a surprise (despite a couple of subtle clues throughout the story).
The detail was great without being boring. Well done kathy. Keep them coming.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Monday Mourning, 17 Jun. 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Monday Mourning (Hardcover)
Another gripping storyline from Kathy Reichs, with more than one twist in the tale! The pace is just right, leading the reader steadily onwards, but never at the cost of those all-important passages or chapters which show the struggle to get to grips with the problems faced by Tempe Brennan, the Forensic Anthropologist for the province of Quebec. Explanations of the more complex scientific examinations are neatly woven into the on-going story, and Ms Reichs pays the reader the compliment of not feeling duty bound to dot every "i" or cross every "t" - something which can easily destroy an otherwise thoroughly good read.
Tempe Brennan is, as ever, a character one actually cares about, so read on, and discover, not only how she and the detectives of the Province solve this case, but also how her relationship with the gorgeous Ryan is developing - or not!
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars drag, 12 Dec. 2005
By A Customer
This book is a drag, unbelievably slow. You can read - in excruciating details - about the weather, food, clothes, moods of Tempe and her friend, while the plot plods along at snail pace, but where is the usual Kathy thrill ? It is the most boring book from Kathy Reichs - I have read all her previous stuff and this is really below average. Even the forensics are scarce. Poor poor stuff from an otherwise great author.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A tediously dull book, 29 Aug. 2013
So, a review of another Kathy Reichs novel about Temperance Brennan. If you haven't read it, this is a plot spoiler. Not for this particular book but for all of them that I have read so far. Story starts, she's either in Montreal or Charlotte, cue explanation of why. Cue flashback to earlier stories in the series and the love interest. Then we get some bodies/skeletons, some excuse for her to be involved in autopsies. Then we get to the scientific bit. Temperance is always dealing with thick and/or sceptical local plods (and of course her love interest who listens to her and is a clever policeman). She always seems to upset the local criminals because she insists on investigating independently and puts herself in danger together with anyone she is close to. And she is always rescued from some contrived dangerous or likely fatal situation by the same thick/sceptical plods for reasons that never seem to hang together. At the end the plods always tell her how much they admire her work and there's usually some guff about all being in it to catch the bad guys and then 'bingo!' we start the next story from much the same position as the last one. She never learns! The cops are all thick and doubtful and she is so much cleverer than they are, here's another skeleton and off we go! Up until now I enjoyed the books and then I have suddenly got tired of them. Formulaic? Oui. Ennui? Oui et Oui! À bientôt Kathy!
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Monday Mourning
Monday Mourning by Kathy Reichs (Hardcover - 14 Jun. 2004)
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