Book Review: Speaking in Bones by Kathy Reichs

shelf-159852__180Speaking in Bones by Kathy Reichs

‘True believers can be the most dangerous of all’

For anyone familiar with the t.v. show, Bones these series of novels are what inspired the t.v. show. Dr. Brennan’s character on the show is vastly different than in the book. On the show she is awkward, doesn’t understand joking and is very serious and naïve. In the novel she is sharp, witty and has an easy banter with everyone. I prefer her character in the novel to the one on the show. Wonder why they changed it so dramatically?

I enjoy the show, however I am not one for reading about all of the fine details of an autopsy room, I generally skip over those parts. So since her Bones series is about working with corpses to dissect their secrets to catch a killer, I have stayed away from her novels. I was surprised and happy to find that although this one does delve into the autopsy room and all of the bones, tissues, cutting and inspection that goes on in there, it did not overwhelm the story. Happily even though this novel is a part of a large series, you can read it as a stand alone novel.


Dr. Temperance Brennan is approached by a superslueth, a webslueth who is part of an online community that works to find missing people. I never knew this group existed, am not surprised, but was interesting to learn about.

The webslueth brings in a very chilling and disturbing tape, where you hear a young woman record her last moments before two men enter the room.

Trouble is as Dr. Brennan goes on the hunt to discover whose voice is on the tape, she also has to figure out if the girl is actually dead, a victim, the criminal. Or a victim and a criminal?

Weaved around Dr. Brennan’s life as she and others search through a small town to uncover a fanatic religious order, family shunning their own, a corrupt priest, and so many people keeping their own secrets she is forced to continue to dig deeper to uncover the truth.

With deaths and bones pilling up, who is the killer and who is the victim is the question for the reader to solve. More urgently, than old bones are the new ones as people who begin to investigate and ask to many questions in the small town met their death.

A result of exorcisms gone wrong? A mentally disturbed young woman? An excommunicated priest? Her own family? Or a group of people brainwashed by a cult?

‘Dissociation. Exorcism. Delusions. They are all mechanisms to deal with a world that is too overwhelming.’

This novel has intrigue, keeps you guessing, and is a gripping read. The author brought in personal struggles for the characters as well, should they marry, taking care of their sick parents, relationships with coworkers, which allowed the book to be so much more than just a crime solving mystery.

So who had the most irrational take on reality? Cora? Or Hoke and the Teagues with their belief in demonic forces? Or amateur webslueths? Dr. Brennan?

3.5/5- interesting read, would give away to someone. The rating would be higher for those who enjoy the fine details of an autopsy and CSI procedure.

Have you read any of her other novels? Would you suggest I read the first one in the series or can they be stand alone novels?

Happy Reading 🙂



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