Bare Bones by Kathy Reichs

Bare Bones

Title: Bare Bones
Author: Kathy Reichs
Series: Temperance Brennan #6
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves:
Anthropology, Science, CrimeStrong women
Pace: Fast
Format: Novel
Publisher: Arrow Books
Year: 2003
5th sentence, 74th page: “Hello?”

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During one of the hottest summers on record, Dr Temperance Brennan is haunted by a string of horrifying events.

First, the bones of a newborn baby are discovered in a wood stove. The mother is nowhere to be found.

Next, a plane flies into a rock face. The dead pilot and passenger are burned beyond recognition, and covered in an unknown substance.

And then a store of bones is found in a remote corner of the county. What has happened, and who will be the next victim? The answers lie hidden deep within the bones – but Tempe must find them in time to avoid further disaster.


This was one of the more complex stories so far in the Temperance Brennan series – a freak discovery of bones in a bag, a plane crash and a baby in an incinerator all combined into one complex tale of mayhem and woe. The complexities of the storyline made it a little difficult to follow the cast at some points. For each of the crimes, there was a different set of players – each crime had its own set of suspects and professionals involved. Their own victims with their own lives. Even new investigators at each point of this story. It builds to create a multifaceted array of characters that can be a little difficult to follow at some points, but also show a very realistic approach to the life of a forensic anthropologist.

At the conclusion of Grave Secrets, Tempe choses one of the men to go on holidays with and it is in Bare Bones that her choice is finally revealed. The burgeoning relationship is sweet and tentative, although it shows how much Brennan relies upon the friendship to get through her days of death. Again, Reichs shows how dealing with death on such a frequent basis can impact someone’s psyche. The necessity of having understanding relationships in handling such a dreary daily reality, and indeed, our daily lives is integral to surviving in a successful manner.

<- Grave SecretsMonday Mourning ->

Image source: Amazon

Book Review

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