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on 27 July 2014
The author is both a forensic anthropologist (not to be confused with pathologist) and an author of hard boiled crime thrillers. The chief protagonist in these stories is Temperance Brennan,a forensic anthropologist who performs not only in the examination laboratory but also accompanies the detective(s) in the field, where immediate forensic insights may help the investigation.

I use the term 'hard-boiled' to refer to the callous and unfeeling nature of the crimes committed rather than those investigating them, who are quite the contrary.

Obviously the work of anthropologist is usually a far cry from that of most readers and so is bound to be of interest, but so to are details of the chase, which in this case takes us from Montreal, on the St Lawrence river in the east, to Edmonton in Alberta and then to Yellowknife (once a gold mining town) in the NW territory. As usual potential readers could usefully Google the principal terms and place names in the story.

Although a very readable thriller, I thought the plot a wee bit far fetched.
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on 1 February 2013
I hate to write this, I really do, but Reichs' Brennan books are just getting all the same now. At some point in the plot, usually near the end, Tempe will be grabbed by the bad guys but will get away/be saved (usually by Ryan). Early on, she will have at least one accident causing her physical injury - if it were real, she would be scarred horribly! There will be increasing amounts of technical and scientific detail that most of us (a) don't care about and (b) don't understand. The latter is what started killing off my interest in Cornwell's Scarpetta novels, by the way.

The only saving grace is that Brennan is NOT Bones. That's just a money-spinning travesty that Reichs should be ashamed of, IMHO. How you could create a character like the book Brennan and turn her into the TV Bones is just beyond me. I can't think she needs the money that badly. The (early) novels as they stand would make excellent films or mini-series rather than the US tosh.

I do like Tempe and would like to see her with Ryan. The current on/off (but mostly off, except when it's on) status is getting very wearing. Either get it on or get it gone.

Another bonus for me is that the cat Birdie continues to be safe!

I hope she doesn't go down the same sad road Patricia Cornwell has gone because it will then be one series fewer for me to read. I'll buy the next one but if the plot is basically the same, it'll be my last.
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on 5 November 2012
Kathy Reichs has managed to keep the pace and quality of her novels very consistent until now. However, this really disappoints - the plot is pretty predictable and rather contorted. I also think that Tempe is becoming an increasingly unlikely character pushing herself more and more beyond the likely role of a forensic anthropologist. Frankly, she comes over as rather silly, irrational and headstrong rather than professional. I also find her relationship with Ryan increasingly baffling - it would be far more believable and interesting if they moved towards a more committed relationship.
What I do congratulate Kathy Reichs on is presenting the science extraordinarily well and in a manner which is both understandable and does not interrupt the flow of the novel. Also, whatever else, Tempe is not arrogant or self-opionated. In all these facets, Reichs does far better than Patricia Cornwell does with Kay Scarpetta.
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on 23 April 2013
I am a real Kathy Reichs fan and have read all her Temperance Brennan thrillers. I am never disappointed even though some in this excellent series are not quite as excellent as others.
Bones are Forever, in my mind, ranks amongst the best of them, and this time Tempe has to leave her "comfort" zones and usual stomping grounds of either Quebec or Charlotte for the hostile gold mining region of the North Western Territories of Canada.
It all begins with the discovery of one baby's body, then another and yet another. The trail takes Tempe - and her ex, detective Andrew Ryan - to the almost frozen north.
The community of Yellowknife is close-knit, everyone knows everyone else but no one knows nowt about the missing mother of the dead infants.
As usual, there is a strong sense of reality through Reichs' research into the area's history that is mingled with humour and witty lines while the investigation is carried out and the culprit identified. Tempe not only helps to uncover the perpetrator/s but needs to borrow post mortem equipment (limited as it is) when an exhumation is deemed necessary.
Also, as usual, there is the underlying chemistry between Tempe and Ryan which always makes me hope all is not lost. I loved this and I can't imagine a time when Reichs retires Tempe. My life of reading would not be the same again without another saga to look forward to.
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on 2 October 2012
I have read all of Kathy Reichs' Temperance Brennan books and really enjoy them - well most of them, a couple have not been to my taste exactly - so I had Bones Are Forever on preorder and eagerly set about reading it when it arrived and I have to say that initially was really disturbed by it.

The novel begins as Temperance Brennan and her colleagues in Montreal recover the body of a dead baby that has been stuffed behind a vanity unit. As they examine the apartment, they discover more babies hidden. The most disturbing part is that there is clear evidence that these babies have been killed on purpose and concealed. The hunt is then on for their mother, a hunt that will take Tempe and former lover Detective Andrew Ryan to Edmonton and desolate Yellowknife, where they will discover that the babies are merely collateral damage in a higher-stakes game.

So the baby part really upset me - I know this was the designed response, but I did have to put the book down for a few days as my imagination did terrible things to me where those babies were concerned. After that, when the story moves away from the babies, Bones Are Forever is much more like the previous Tempe adventures; action, peril and Tempe managing to always fall down on her face!

I love the Brennan books as they have the right amount of scientific method, without it getting in the way of the plot. Tempe uses a range of forensic techniques to get to the truth and they are all written in an interesting - although I'm sure simplified - way. I can't claim to be scientifically gifted, but I have looked up a great deal of the techniques from the books, just to see if they're real and I have actually learned something *it's a miracle*.

Although, as I said, I was a bit upset by some of the subject matter here, it shouldn't be shied away from as it does happen, so it's certainly not put me off joining Tempe on her next adventure!
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on 21 August 2013
I love Kathy Reichs and Temperance Brennan and always enjoy her books. My one niggle with her writing is the overuse of 'telegraphing' at the end of every chapter (like 'and she was shocked at what she saw...). If I'm into the story I don't need a sentence to make me keep reading. In fact that sentence usually takes me out of the story.

In this book there was much less of this (only a couple of instances that caught me out), however I can't give it 5 stars because I found the juvenile sparring between two grown men annoying (as did Tempe), and their patronising treatment of her (esp by Ryan after all these years) was a bit much to swallow. So while I enjoyed the story and the history, there was a bit too much irritation to be able to give it 5 stars.
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on 8 December 2013
This was just not my type of book. I could have got past the gory, attention grabbing beginning if the story was good, but I was just not interested in lengthy details of forensic science or any of the other details such as the formation, discovery and mining of diamonds. There was a plethora of dead bodies as the story wore on, and again that it not the type of story I like. I also disliked the pesudo-Mickey Spillane type dialogue, like for instance saying that someone 'dropped a dime' meaning that they made a phone call. I skipped over most of it. The plot could have been good if it had been written in another style.
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on 29 July 2016
fantastic book exactly what I would expect from Kathy reichs my all time favourite author love the storyline and the chemistry between tempe and ryan storyline has a lot of twists and turns and I love the fact that by readind Kathy reichs you learn a little something everytime love how in depth she goes about anthropology not just skimming the subject recoomend to anyone who loves a good crime thriller
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on 1 May 2014
The storyline was somewhat unrealistic in places and links between the characters seemed forced. There was a sense of tying up loose ends quickly and this meant relationships and connections between some of the characters seemed far fetched. Too much unnecessary scientific forensic explanation that I found myself scanning through quickly and glossing over. Not up to her usual standard because it all seemed too predictable and after having read every other book in the series I was hoping for the same thrilling read from start to finish but this wasn't the case. I was happy to read on but rather relieved when I finished. The factual information about diamond mining and geographical location was interesting though. I thought the ending was rushed and there was no clear and concluding explanation of why the original killings had taken place. Still an enjoyable and familiar read but not up to the usual standard. Some people might find the opening chapters upsetting because they focus on the retrieval of babies bodies from behind sinks and wall cavities.
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on 8 November 2012
I am a great fan of Kathy Reichs and have read all her novels. I couldn't wait for this novel to be published and once I recieved it, on my Kindle, I commenced reading straight away.
The story line was gripping and the twists and turns had me changing my mind about the characters every few pages. I loved it and was bereft when I had finished it but had been unable to put it down. The down side is that, as I never learnt french, the sections in French and the place names are difficult to pronounce. However, as her novels are set in Canada where French is one of the main languages it would be difficult not to use some of that language.

A great read, thanks Kathy.
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