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Wednesday, October 8, 2014


5 stars out of 5

Can a TV show get in the way of a book? Sometimes - and nowhere is it more evident for me than with Kathy Reichs' series featuring forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. The books spawned the popular Fox Network show, Bones,now in its 9th season. Even though the show rather loosely mirrors the books, I've watched it faithfully from the beginning.

Until this season, that is. I was growing a bit weary of it a bit last year - the plots were getting a bit far-fetched - but (SPOILER ALERT) with this year's season-opening killing off of Dr. Lance Sweets - played by John Francis Daley - I've pretty much given up. That disappointment, coupled with a so-so 16th book by Reichs, Bones of the Lost,prompted me to be a bit hesitant to open this, the 17th Temperance Brennan novel.

I needn't have worried. The only complaint I have with this one, and it's minor, is that there's a boatload of characters and it's a bit hard to keep them straight (which no doubt is due in part to my aging brain that has turned my short-term memory to scrambled eggs). Otherwise, it appears that Reichs is back in fine form.

This one begins as Brennan is called unexpectedly to consult with the Charlotte, N.C., Cold Case Unit. As it turns out, two young girls have been murdered, and it appears that, although the locations were thousands of miles apart, the killer is the same. In fact, the likely suspect is Anique Pomerleau, who kidnapped and murdered several young girls in Canada in a similar fashion several years ago. After nearly killing Brennan, who was chasing her down back then, she escaped and hasn't been seen since.

Being called in to help not only puts Brennan back on the case, but it hooks her up once again with her former police detective partner and lover Andrew Ryan, who dropped off the face of the earth after the untimely death of his beloved daughter. Now, they're forced to partner up again and deal not only with tracking down and catching a murderer, but finding common ground on which to build a new relationship.

Bones Never Lie by Kathy Reichs (Bantam, September 2015); 337 pp.

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