Review: A CONSPIRACY OF BONES by Kathy Reichs

I confess. I am a long time fan of Kathy Reichs’s writing and the Temperance Brennan series.  I haven’t read all the books in the series but I have read a fair number of them, so I couldn’t resist the opportunity to read an ARC of A Conspiracy of Bones when it became available on Net Galley.  I wasn’t disappointed.

51gx80rymrlAbout the Book*

It’s sweltering in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Temperance Brennan, still recovering from neurosurgery following an aneurysm, is battling nightmares, migraines, and what she thinks might be hallucinations when she receives a series of mysterious text messages, each containing a new picture of a corpse that is missing its face and hands. Immediately, she’s anxious to know who the dead man is, and why the images were sent to her.

An identified corpse soon turns up, only partly answering her questions.

To win answers to the others, including the man’s identity, she must go rogue, working mostly outside the system. That’s because Tempe’s new boss holds a fierce grudge against her and is determined to keep her out of the case. Tempe bulls forward anyway, even as she begins questioning her instincts. But the clues she discovers are disturbing and confusing. Was the faceless man a spy? A trafficker? A target for assassination by the government? And why was he carrying the name of a child missing for almost a decade?

With help from a number of law enforcement associates including her Montreal beau Andrew Ryan and the always-ready-with-a-smart-quip, ex-homicide investigator Skinny Slidell, and utilizing new cutting-edge forensic methods, Tempe draws closer to the astonishing truth.

But the more she uncovers, the darker and more twisted the picture becomes…

*from Amazon webpage

My Review

This well written thriller features Dr. Temperance Brennan, a forensic anthropologist, who is drawn into a puzzling case by external forces, despite being effectively shut out by the woman in charge of the Charlotte ME’s office. Although coping with some major health issues, her sense of determination remains strong and she works the case on the sly, with help from her friends.  The fast-paced plot  is complex and integrated a fair number of twists and surprises before the mystery is resolved.

In this book, the author shows us a more vulnerable side of Temperance, while highlighting just enough of her past experiences to help us understand how her character was shaped.  I think it’s amazing how Reichs has managed to create a character that continues to develop and evolve, even 19 books into the series. Kudos to an exceptional author.

FTC disclosure:  I received an advanced review copy of this book prior to its publication.  This has not affected the content of my review.

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