Sometimes, revisiting the past is the only way to rescue the present…
Winter has come to North Carolina and, with it, a drop in crime. For a while, temporarily idle forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan is content to dote on her daughter Katy, finally returned to civilian life from the army. But when mother and daughter meet at Tempe’s place one night for dinner, they find a box on the back porch. Inside: a very fresh human eyeball.
GPS coordinates etched into the eyeball lead to a Benedictine Monastery where an equally macabre discovery awaits. Soon after, Tempe examines a mummified corpse in a state park, and her anxiety deepens.
There seems to be no pattern to these random killings, except that each mimics in some way a killing that a younger Tempe witnessed, analysed, or barely escaped.
Who or what is targeting her, and why?
Helping Tempe discover the answers is Detective Erskine ‘Skinny’ Slidell, retired but still volunteering with the CMPD cold case unit – and still displaying his gallows humour. But as the two infiltrate a bizarre survivalist’s lair, even Skinny’s mood darkens.
And then Tempe’s daughter Katy disappears.
Electrifying, heart-stopping and compulsive, this is Tempe’s most personal and dangerous case yet…
What I Thought:
Kathy Reichs is one of a select group of authors whose work I will instantly buy. After reading Deja Dead many years ago, I have been a dedicated fan of the Temperance Brennan series and, with Cold Cold Bones, Kathy Reichs shows no signs of running out of steam!
A suitably cold and bleak Charlotte is the backdrop for a bizarre series of crimes that, seemingly, have no connection, but get Tempe’s sub-conscious pinging. After ignoring those little voices for a while, she realises that the connection might be her. But what point is the killer trying to make?
What follows is a white-knuckle ride as Tempe and Skinny Slidell try to work out the answer, and outside forces threaten Tempe where she is most vulnerable.
This is a superb return for Tempe Brennan – as ever, the novel just cries out to be read in one sitting and while I try not to use the term ‘page-turner’, this really is! The plot throws out drama and excitement, but backs it all up with forensic details that are so obviously gleaned from Kathy Reichs’ years of work as a forensic anthropologist. While there is a great deal of this detail, it is always explained in a way that the reader will understand, and it only ever serves to enhance the plot, and never overwhelms it.
Part of the storyline deals with homeless veterans, as Tempe’s daughter Katy decides to pay back after her own experiences in combat, by volunteering at a local shelter. It’s great to see this topic featured in a sympathetic way and with no judgement.
As I said, the Tempe Brennan books are an instant pre-order for me, so it was a delight to find that Cold Cold Bones is just a good as I had hoped – definitely recommended!
Cold Cold Bones is published by Simon & Schuster.
About the Author:
Kathy Reichs’s first novel Déjà Dead, published in 1997, won the Ellis Award for Best First Novel and was an international bestseller. Kathy was also a producer of Fox Television’s longest running scripted drama Bones, which is based on her work and her novels. Kathy uses her own dramatic experiences as a forensic anthropologist to bring her mesmerizing thrillers to life. One of very few forensic anthropologists certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology, Kathy divides her time between Charlotte, North Carolina, and Montreal, Québec.
This post is part of a blog tour celebrating the publication of Cold Cold Bones by Kathy Reichs. Check out some of the other reviews and exclusive content at the participating blogs below:
Please note: I was sent a copy of this book for review (although I also bought a hard copy with my own pennies), but all opinions are, as ever, my own.