Assaulted by the bitter cold of a Montreal winter, the American-born Dr. Temperance Brennan, Forensic Anthropologist for the Province of Quebec, digs for a corpse where Sister Elisabeth Nicolet, dead for over a century and now a candidate for sainthood, should be lying in her grave. A strange, small coffin, buried in the recesses of a decaying church, holds the first clue to the cloistered nun's fate.The puzzle surrounding Sister Elisabeth Nicolet's life and death provides a welcome contrast to discoveries at a burning chalet, where scorched and twisted bodies await Tempe's professional expertise. Who were these people? What brought them to this gruesome fate? And where are the children?Homicide Detective Andrew Ryan, with whom Tempe has a combustive history, joins her in the arson investigation. From the fire scene they are drawn into the worlds of an enigmatic and controversial sociologist, a mysterious commune, and a primate colony on a Carolina island.Featuring the kind of forensic detail that only Kathy Reichs can provide -- from skeletal reconstruction to insect analysis -- Death du Jour takes the reader on a riveting journey from the morgue to the lab to the crime scene, from the warmth of a barrier island to the frigid cold of a deadly ice storm. With this poignant and powerful work, Kathy Reichs confirms her status as a brilliant new crime-writing star.
We know the theory about life imitating art as describes by Oscar Wilde, but in her case, the writings of author, Kathy Reichs, is more that her art writing imitates her life. Riechs has many degrees in forensic anthropology and academia. She is one of only eighty-two forensic anthropologists who are certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology. Many television fans will recognize her main character in her books, Temperance "Tempe" Brennan as the main character in the Fox series, Bones. The series is loosely based on Reich's books and her professional experiences. She has even been a guest participating in a few episodes. Emily Deschanel plays Temperance "Bones" Brennan, the man character in the series.
Author Reichs has had a very diverse career aside from her success as a premier author of nineteen novels. She has consulted in Tanzania, to testify at the United Nations' International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Assisted in the Highlands of Guatemala, and served as a member of the Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team to assist with the disaster at the World Trade Center.
Reichs describes herself as "fastidiously conscientious about getting the science right" in her books.......just as she would be when conducting an actual investigation. She relies on her true life experiences when writing her books........art imitating life. She has been known to say that anything she described in a book actually happened in real life. She was an expert witness in the Casey Anthony case. She refused at first, but felt it necessary when Anthony began to be tried in the press instead of in the court of law. She did a full skeletal analysis of Anthony's daughter, Caylee, and could not determine the cause of death, but concluded that there was no evidence of child abuse or malnutrition. Sometimes life can be a lot more puzzling than art.
Reichs does an outstanding job with accurate details. We are very familiar with the area in Quebec in which part of this story is set, and she is on the money with everything. The contrast of half the book being set in Quebec and half being in the Carolinas, with the murders being linked, yet so far away, keeps you on your toes. You can read this before bed without having nightmares!
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