"In Quebec, winters can be slow for the forensic anthropologist. The temperature rarely rises above freezing. The rivers and lakes ice over, the ground turns rock hard, and snow buries everything. Bugs disappear, and many scavengers go underground. The result: Corpses do not putrefy in the great outdoors. Floaters are not pulled from the St. Lawrence... and some of last season's dead are not found until the spring melt."|
Readers of Kathy Reichs's cool and clever first forensic thriller Déjà Dead will recognize the ironic voice of Tempe (short for Temperance) Brennan, the North Carolina-born scientist who winds up working at the Laboratoire de Médicine Légale in Montreal. Here she bristles at the conservative attitudes of some of her Canadian colleagues.
Despite the cold weather, Tempe's workload quickly becomes heavy: the bones of a long-dead nun now up for sainthood have been moved and tampered with; a deadly house fire turns out to be arson; and a university teaching assistant disappears after joining a cult. Tempe must figure out where (and why) all the bodies are buried in the hard Canadian ground. Her investigations take her home to North Carolina, and to a strange colony living on an offshore island.
Unlike certain other writers who specialize in forensic pathology, Reichs doesn't revel in the horror of death or rub our noses in gore: she uses the science of death to reveal rather than to shock or startle. It definitely makes for easier reading--especially at mealtimes.
Source: Dick Adler, Amazon.com