I used to read Kathy Reichs obsessively. When her books became a TV show I watched that too. Super entertaining in that vaguely smart over dramatic manner I enjoy. Eventually the show leaned to drama with less smarts and I moved away from it. I also hadn’t picked up any of her books in eons. But I saw The Bone Collection on a swing through the library and thought four little novellas could be just what the doctor ordered.
This collection of novellas were definitely written with a purpose. Three of the four stories, according to Reichs comments in an author’s note, were written specifically to bring attention to a concern of hers. Why not? They’re well written entertaining little novellas if a bit preachy at times. But that’s the right of solid authors with a long list of hits behind them, to use their power for causes they think are important. I can roll with that.
Reichs has a slow discovery style, by which I mean, you get a body, and as Tempe performs the autopsy and gets overly involved with the investigation, new facts turn up, which alters the plot. I don’t want to get too specific and give away the twists. It’s a hallmark of Reichs though. If you’ve read enough of her books you know almost where the twist will take you but the reading is still enjoyable.
Two things became clear to me with the 4 novella format. First, in each one she says the exact same line about handing her ID to someone who studies it so long they could have memorized the information. Note to self, watch for lines I over use. The second was a little grating. Tempe gets overly involved in each investigation. As she goes along she makes these amazing deductive jumps providing valuable assistance to the police. Ok, cool. But then at the end, she goes dumber than a box of rocks. She goes to confront someone without back up and frequently lies about it, too. And at this point in the story as the reader, I know she’s going to confront the bad guys. How is it she doesn’t know until they attack her? Bah. It was a little much 3 times in a row.
℘℘℘ – Decent read. I have read her before and will probably read her again when her books cross my path but I won’t go looking for them.