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4.4 out of 5 stars16
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 22 February 2014
Excellent book, well written and very interesting. Having heard Mike Silverman on Radio 4 decided to get this book and wasn't disappointed.
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on 8 March 2014
To anyone even a little bit interested in Forensics or CSI, this is a great read. Mike succinctly describes a number of real cases that he worked on, giving the reader the lowdown on how these investigations actually proceed in the forensic workplace, which is often quite removed from the CSI fiction. Cleverly interspersed with these casework histories Mike describes the major aspects of his own career path, and provides some fascinating insight into the politics involved in the interplay between the Forensic Science Service and other major players in the world of crime investigation, events which ultimately led to the demise of the Home Office forensic science setup in the UK. I view the book as a former Forensic Scientist myself, but I think that any reader would get a lot out of this volume.
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on 2 March 2014
Although there is obviously a fair amount of science in the book, Mike Silverman makes his subject completely accessible to a non-scientific reader like me, especially through his sometimes horrific, sometimes amusing, but always fascinating anecdotes. It was a real eye opener in many ways - from the politics to the explanation of what a forensic scientist really does. It will certainly change the way I read crime novels in future!
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on 27 November 2014
I heard Mike Silverman on radio/podcast and the book is every bit as good as I expected. A fascinating insight into real world forensic science; as it is now and how it got there.

The cover seems to be aiming at a slightly different ("real life crime") demographic. "Packed with genuine crime scene photos" it proclaims, as if that were something to entice. Yes, there are some pictures, but if you really want to stare at blood and gore I dare say you'll be disappointed

The scientific aspects of this work are lightly woven into his story. This is not a text book or a "hard" read, but the complexity of the work and the skill of those that perform is very clear. It covers the technical advancements as well as the all too human failings.

He doesn't set out to "diss" CSI and other similar TV shows but there is the occasional reference to something that might not be realistic and I came away with the impression that the reality was more interesting, nuanced and human than the screen representations.
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on 21 January 2016
really into true crime and read nearly evertyning I can get my hands on over the last 10 years. This was not as fast paced as other books I've read however still a very good read, I won't spoil it for the reader but there are a couple of chapters which really held my attention and I wanted more. Just note this is about a career with lots of interesting stories thrown in between, its not one tail after another of gritty 'orrible murder scenes, if thats what your after then still a great read but not over the top with gruesome details.
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on 5 December 2015
I'm not a scientist, but I found this book very enlightening. I'm an avid reader of crime novels, especially the ones by Val McDermid, and there is a lot of forensic detection going on in them. Mike Silverman's book has given me a good insight into what a real forensic scientist does. I'd thoroughly recommend his book.
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on 18 March 2014
very technical ,had to skip some pages !!! However, fascinating having an inside view .To be fair the book is actually for my grand daughter who is studying forensics,thought i would just have a quick read before i passed it on !! It is interesting to see how the world of dna has come on since the sixties !!
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on 22 March 2014
We thought DNA would provide the answers we are looking for but with possible human error added to the mix can we be sure of the results? This book poses a worrying question. A fascinating read.
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on 26 September 2014
Quite a good insight into the forensic side of police work far too much emphasis on DNA and not enough gore!! Blood spatter was interesting though.
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on 30 May 2014
Really enjoyed this book, it gives a fascinating insight into the world of forensics and its help/hindrance to the justice system.
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