Spider Bones by Kathy Reichs

By Karen Dionne
Kathy Reichs can do seemingly anything. She turned her career as a forensic anthropologist into a series of New York Times bestselling books, whose heroine, Tempe Brennan, got her own television show, Fox’s monster hit “Bones.” Kathy has been a producer for all six of this wildly successful series’ seasons (the show recently aired its landmark 100th episode).

Scientist, bestselling novelist (whose books have been translated into 32 languages), and television producer, Kathy can now add television writer to her list of accomplishments. She wrote an episode of “Bones” called “The Witch and the Wardrobe” which aired in May. She loved working in the writers’ room with a team of people. Fortunately, though, for her legions of fans, who have bought over 7,500,000 copies of her novels in the United States and Canada, she still loves writing solo.  Scribner will publish her newest Tempe Brennan novel, Spider Bones, on August 24, 2010.

Spider Bones finds Tempe in a bit of a bind.  It all begins when she inspects the body of a drowning victim in Hemmingford, Quebec.  Tempe estimates that he’s been dead about two days. Print checks quickly identify this victim as John Charles Lowery. The only problem is that John Charles Lowery died in combat in Vietnam in 1968.  Tempe exhumes the corpse buried in Lowery’s grave in North Carolina, and flies with the remains to JPAC (the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command) in Hawaii for a reanalysis of the bones. At JPAC, things just get more complicated–yet another set of remains are found, these with Lowery’s dog tags tangled amongst them.  Why have these bodies been misidentified? And why does someone seem so determined to make sure Tempe doesn’t find the answer?

Tempe is also struggling on the home front. Her daughter Katy’s erstwhile boyfriend has been killed while doing NGO work in Afghanistan. And Ryan’s daughter–clean and sober, at least for the time being–is in desperate need of a change of scene. Tempe invites them both to Hawaii–and to say that the two girls do not hit it off is a dramatic understatement.

Spider Bones is Kathy Reichs at the top of her game–Tempe remains witty, irascible, and very smart, and once again cutting edge forensic science is expertly combined with a fast-paced, riveting plot.

“Enough forensic examinations, misidentifications, genetic anomalies and coincidences for a whole season of snappy Tempe’s TV adventures. The biggest surprise is that all the corpses are indeed tied together.” —Kirkus Reviews

“[A] tightly plotted tale with engaging characters whose personal lives can be at least as interesting as the cases they’re investigating…Fans of the books, of course, will soon be stampeding to secure their copies.” —Booklist

“This latest puzzle will lead Temperance to the Central Identification Laboratory in Hawaii, where her persistent questions will put her life, and those she loves, in mortal danger…[a] lush tropical setting and fascinating premise.” —Library Journal

About the author:

Kathy Reichs, like her character Temperance Brennan, is a forensic anthropologist, formerly for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in North Carolina and currently for the Laboratoire de sciences judiciaires et de médecine légale for the province of Quebec. A professor in the department of anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, she is one of only eighty-five forensic anthropologists certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology, is past Vice President of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, and serves on the National Police Services Advisory Board in Canada. Reichs’s first book, Déja Dead, catapulted her to fame when it became a New York Times bestseller and won the 1997 Ellis Award for Best First Novel. Her novel, Devil Bones, was a #1 New York Times bestseller. Spider Bones is her thirteenth novel.

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