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Deadly Decisions - Kathy Reichs

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      08.01.2013 19:22
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      The third in the Tempe Brennan series

      I did quite well in Sainsburys I thought. I managed to find this book at only £1.99, add in Karin Slaughter at 2 for £3 and my reading was set for the next couple of days.
      Kathy Reichs has managed to create a character that has made itself familiar to fans of the crime genre and tv watchers of the same. Temperance Brennan is the star of the show 'Bones', along with her lover and sidekick Andrew Ryan. Personally I hate the tv show and have avoided watching it after the first couple of episodes. Thankfully in the books she has evolved into a great character. And I have to admit I watched the programme more for David Borneaz than anything else.

      Deadly Decisions is the third outing for Tempe Brennan after the fabulous Deja Dead and Death Du Jour. If you havent read the first two I'll give you a little information. Tempe is a Forensic Anthropologist who lives and works between North Carolina and Montreal. She teached down in Carolina and works for the fabulously named Laboratoire des Sciences Judiciaires et de Médecine Légale, a forensic science laboratry in short. A Forensic Anthropolist basically works with the dead whose remains are too decomposed for ordinary forensic scientists to deal with. It could be someone badly burnt in a fire or someone whose body has been found after many years. Forensic Anthropologists are used to work alongside the police. My apologies for the lecture but it does help to understand the work Tempe does in the novel.

      Deadly Decisions involves a little girl shot in a drive-by shooting, a biker war which is upping the corpse numbers and bones of a teenager found hundreds of miles away from when she was murdered. The usual stuff and in Reichs way, not a cheerful moment in sight! She starts by trying to seperate the bones of identical twins who get the Darwin Award for managing to blow themselves and gets dragged deeper into the world of bikers and Hells Angels.

      Usually I start writing books reviews by looking at the characters and then the plot, the conclusions and then what I think of the book. But this time I'm doing it differently, conclusion first!

      I really really didnt like this book and thought it was poor writing and hard going, if I had read this one first the only way I'd be getting anymore would be if they were 20p at the charity or downloaded for free. I've got hundreds of books unreviewed but I knew halfway through this book I'd be writing a review to warn people about it.

      The characters are a problem, Tempe is her usual staid self, if you met her in real life you'd be forgiven for thinking she was a bit uptight, snobbish even. She certainly doesnt come across as someone who'd let her hair down and dance all night long. Reichs doesnt even really explore the notion of hidden depths to her even though it's obvious she loves her family, dysfunctional as they are, and definately has a thing going on for Andrew Ryan. Why she has to continually go it alone into dangerous situations like biker bars without telling people where she is is an unknown to me, perhaps Reichs is trying to set her up as a tough independent person but I'm more likely to think, daft mare!
      Tempe doesnt develop through the book at all, and although she gets the prerequisite mugging/kidnapping/beating that she gets in practically every book doesnt seem to phase her at all, Tempe is a very wooden character in this novel.

      Andrew Ryan is a fleeting moment in Deadly Decisions, appearing much more often in the other novels. This is because he ends up be arrested at the start of the book for drug and corruption offences. What happens to him is so cliche and obvious it's almost embarressing. It's slightly amusing but doesnt add anything to his character or the story.

      Kit, her travelling nephew turns up on her doorstep looking for a place to stay which she gladly gives him He's fascinated by her work and makes to much of a friendship with Lyle Crease, a journalist who seems intent on wooing Tempe and getting into her life. Kit appears to be getting himself drawn towards the biker gang and luckily for him Lyle seems to have the contacts. Kit is a likeable character, a proper cheeky chappie. He's probably the only character you do feel any emotion for, hoping and looking out for the fact that he doesnt put himself in danger. Kit seems to be the only one who can get Tempe to show any humanity in the book.

      All the rest of the characters particularly the police that Tempe works with dont seem to add anything except as linkages to add the storyline together. Claudel, her nemesis as we see in later books just comes across as an annoyance to be rude, Quickwater a Native American expert on biker gang culture probably doesnt say more than about 30 words in the entire story, there seems to be an explanation for this later in the book but it doesnt explain the lack of character and dialogue. LeManche, her boss is hospitalised fairly early on so theres another character Reich doesnt need to bother writing about. The mysterious new admin assistant at the lab could have been developed so much more to add a real twist but it just doesnt happen.

      The storyline is ok, bikers get bloody, innocents suffer, Tempe sorts it all out and everything is ok with all the twists and plots nicely wrapped up. It's not original but nothing is really left out, even if some of it is implausible and some events and people put in there rather accommodatingly to make sure its all smoothly done. The use of such characters and events strikes me as rather convenient and often shows a laziness by the author just to make things easier.

      I do have a big gripe with this book though, if I wanted to read a factual book and find out certain information I would go and do so, not a fictional thriller. Theres just too much 'real' information. Knowing about the NCIC, Americas National Crime Information Center does help but three lines of what it is and does would be sufficient. I really dont need to know what it is, when it started, where it was started, where its based now, and what it covers. This actually took 2 pages and was completely irrelevant.
      In the beginning the chapters began with a presentation about biker gangs, no I havent put the s on the end of chapters as a mistake. You basically get to know the entire history of the Hells Angels, what the different groups are, the hierachies and how many of them they are. Indeed you get to find out about the different types of bikes especially Harleys. I now know all about the different engines, tank shapes, etc. But I didnt particularly want to know, especially as it has no relevance to the storyline. Then theres an entire chapter on blood spatter analysis down to the minutest details, helpful if I was reading a book on forensic science but boring in a thriller. Theres also detailed pages on entomologists, autopsies, forensic anthropologists, etc. It was in real danger of it being more about this than writing the fictional parts of the book. In my opinion just massive amounts of fillers, hints of laziness and I'm being generous with the words hints. It's almost as if Reichs came very close to her publishers deadlines and realised her imagination hadnt conjured up enough.

      It really is quite poor and lets Reich down dreadfully, Death Du Jour, her first book was fabulous and won quite a lot of awards, her second not quite so, but then her writing picks right up after this book. Unfortunately I think if this was the first novel you picked up you would never read the rest. I'm not the only one who thinks so, on Amazon reviews as many people gave it 1 and 2 stars as did 4 and 5, quite surprising when you consider her reputation now.

      I recommend you steer clear of this book and only buy it to complete your collection when you have read the rest, not that I think Reich is going to write any more about Tempe as she has started writing about her great-niece Tory, also a forensic anthropologist. Perhaps Reich has run out of ideas and originality for Tempe and I could well believe it!

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        23.08.2011 16:39
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        A good read for those who like mysterys - and science!

        A little bit of a segue from Harry Potter, but I have a lot of books on my Kindle that I want to read, so I'm finding it hard just sticking to one! I started reading Kathy Reich's books because I had been watching Bones, the TV series based on the books, and my dad thought I'd enjoy reading the books as well. There is a word of warning if you like the books/show and want to try the other - although the heroine is the same, and has the same job, the similarities end there. Unusually for me, I prefer the TV show rather than the book, but that could be because I watched the show a lot first! But, on to the review!

        Deadly Decisions is the third novel written by forensic anthropologist Kathy Reichs. The heroine of the story is Dr Temperance Brennan, also a forensic anthropologist, splitting her time between working as a lecturer in North Carolina and working in the medical lab in Montreal. For those who do not know, forensic anthropologists investigate remains where flesh is too degraded due to decomposition, arson etc for a coroner to obtain evidence or details (such as age, sex, ethnicity, how they died etc). Adding to this, Temperance is a divorced recovering alcoholic (who is still on good terms with her ex, Pete), with a grown-up daughter Katy. She is also becoming less adverse to the idea of an office romance....

        Deadly Decisions itself begins with a nine year old girl shot dead, caught in a cross-fire between rival biker gangs. An exhumation leads to the discovery of two biker bodies and part of the remains of another young girl - but are these bones linked to those found in North Carolina years ago? As Brennan vows to find whoever killed these young girls, she (and her nephew Kit) get drawn further and further into the biker underworld. But has she gone too far over her head this time?

        I find when I'm reading this that I imagine Brennan to look and sound like Kathy Reichs - which is handy because I think she's slightly based on her. Unfortunately the character really seems to irritate me. I find her very self-pitying and moany (if that's a word!). She also seems to judge people really quickly, which again leads to more moaning which just gets frustrating. Throughout the books there is the same set of characters: Brennan, her daughter, sister, nephew and some of her work colleagues. This doesn't mean that there aren't 'extras' in each book, but, like with many books, there are the set characters who you get to know more and more as the series progresses. Due to events and the unfurling of Brennan's relationships with some of the characters, I would suggest reading the books in order or you can get really confused as to what's going on - or spoil some things for yourself (like I did!).

        I find the science aspect of this novel absolutely fascinating (perhaps because I'm a biologist and have touched on areas that these novels look at). For example, in Deadly Decisions it is explained to Brennan about how blood spatter analysis works - what the different shapes and sizes of splatter suggest about how a crime was carried out. I found this absolutely fascinating and not too complex. It almost went on too long, but not quite, which was lucky! However, there was rather a lot of time explaining about how the world of biker's works. This I feel went on way too long; although the book was based on the activities of bikers, the information given was far too much, and wasn't necessary. I ended up skipping some and this didn't make the book any less understandable for me (but did make it go a little bit quicker!).

        Another flaw I have found with the Brennan books (of which I have read the majority now) is that the ending seems a little rush. It takes so long to reach the climax of the story, which is over in what feels like literally seconds, and then there is a quick explanation about who did it and why and that's it, the book is over. After all that time reading it really does feel like a big, big let-down.

        Overall, I do find a lot of the science interesting, and the murder mystery is fantastic as it does pretty much keep me guessing until the reveal at the end (but I could be absolutely useless at working these things out, but for me it keeps me busy!). For once, Deadly Decisions wasn't too graphic - but you need to expect a little gore as it is dead bodies being dealt with - it's just less graphic than other Kathy Reichs books I have read recently. Even though I do get irritated at times, I'm probably going to read this series again, as I find aspects fascinating, and still manage to be puzzled by the mystery laid out before me!

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          29.11.2010 11:46
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          Another winner from Kathy Reichs :)

          I'm a big fan of Kathy Reichs after reading and reviewing several of her other books, so I was looking forward to Deadly Decisions. Her writing style is something of an acquired taste perhaps, and some will argue that there's too much in the way of science and long words that distracts from the ease and enjoyability (is that a word? It is now!) of reading. I, however, find it more interesting than annoying and Deadly Decisions is another example of her classic style.

          The front of the book says that this is 'The No.1 International Bestseller', and something like that always tempts me to judge for myself. Whether or not you've read a Reichs novel before doesn't really matter as the background to the characters is covered well and the plot is unique and independent of prior reading. For those who are familiar with her, this places Temperance Brennan at the forefront again throughout the book.

          Deadly Decisions introduces us to the much-loved Brennan, or 'Tempe' as she's commonly known, a forensic anthropologist. We're given some of her background history and work portfolio because she works for different departments alongside lecturing students, assisting US crime units with murders and unidentifiable bodies.

          This particular plot opens with a biker gang shooting, which catches a 9 year old Emily in the crossfire. As the plot unfolds, other bodies are discovered at the headquarters of a biker gang and links to older cases are discovered. Whilst Brennan's job is to find clues from badly decomposed/burned/unrecognisable remains, she becomes very much a key figure in hunting down the biker gangs responsible and piecing together fragments of difference crimes and murders.

          Weaving its way through the biker crimes are the personal elements of Tempe's life as her nephew, Kit, comes to stay with her for a while. His interest in all things bikes is heightened and it seems he's becoming involved in this dangerous underworld, but Brennan's warnings and cautions are practically ignored by this teenage boy who's naïve in his assurances that he's intelligent and capable to look out for himself.

          Tempe's love interest, Ryan, is also involved in this story, but I wont say how or where. There are some good twists, as always, and it's good to see the familiar characters play out throughout this plot. As expected, the characters and scenes were easy to visualise and identify with thanks to Reich's smooth and intellectual writing style, making the novel gripping to read.

          As Tempe is working with Claudel and Quickwater as part of her Carcajou assignment in Montreal, French is elegantly dispersed throughout, without being too confusing or overwhelming. There is an array of characters and incidents that are introduced but well re-capped so I didn't find myself getting lost along the way.

          The book was enjoyable to read but not an 'easy' read per se; intelligently written, it required thought and proved as a learning curve at the same time as Reich's tells us lots of new factual information such as about the forensic aspects and history of biker clubs and violence (think Hells Angels). I can see that this could be criticised for being overwhelming and confusing, especially with the names of various biker gangs and puppet clubs being thrown around all over the place. However, I also found it interesting and original, adding to the atmosphere and sense of authenticity of the book.

          There's more praise on the back of the book which I would agree with, for example : 'Her formula is as winning here as in her earlier novels. The tart, bilingual dialogue is again first-rate and, best of all, Deadly Decisions restores Brennan to an atmospheric Montreal' - Sunday Times. The Sunday Express also claimed that it's 'Better than Patricia Cornwell'.

          Overall, I would recommend this for it's unique and intelligent style, and beautifully crafted characters. It may not be everyone's cuppa tea, but for crime fans it's an absorbing read.

          RRP £7.99 382 pages over 40 chapters

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            04.11.2009 21:11
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            Another good read from Kathy Reichs

            Deadly Decisions is the third book in Kathy Reichs series featuring the life of Temperance Brennan. I wasn't going to write a review for this book to start with, but as the book went on I felt that I would do.

            The book has a dramatic beginning:
            'Her name was Emily Anne. She was nine years old, with black ringlets, long lashes and caramel coloured skin. Her ears were pierced with tiny gold loops. Her forehead was punctured by two slugs from a Cobra 9-mm semiautomatic'.

            This really made me want to read on, but actually, this is the last real mention of Emily. She was killed because she was in the wrong place at the wrong time and got caught up in biker warfare. Because she was killed wrongfully, Brennan makes it her mission to find out what happened and who had shot her. Surely this would have been her main priority anyway, regardless of Emily being killed?

            The story is mainly focused on bike gangs in America, which I have no interest in at all and at points I did skip over large parts because I was bored.

            As with Reichs' previous novels there was the required amount of bones being discovered and Brennan getting involved when she should have really been keeping her distance. Also, there was the obligatory family member or close friend that gets too involved with the case, putting their lives at risk. I wonder (as there are still another 8 books I haven't read) when she will run out of close friends and family to get involved or if this will be a theme throughout the series.

            In the last book there was a budding relationship beginning with one of the policemen she had worked with and I was quite excited that this might progress in this book. Sadly, that was not the case. Ryan (her new love interest) disappears and you don't really hear from him in the entire book. But it does leave you with a bit of a cliff hanger at the end which should encourage you to read the next book.

            I find there are quite a lot of characters in the book, both those who are living and those who are dead. At times it can get confusing and you forget who is who and what happened to them. I suppose it is the nature of the job and it is the only way to do it. Brennan works with a lot of different policemen and has to go to lots of different people for advice as well as identifying those who has died.

            The title is a bit misleading as well as it took until the last few chapters for me to actually realise how it was relevant. It was only then that it was mentioned and after it had been mentioned once, it was talked about another three times - all in the last few chapters of the book. It is basically talking about the decisions that people make that could have been the wrong ones because they get you killed, or involved with the wrong people. I don't think it was the best title that could have been chosen but at the moment I can't think of a better one.

            Having said that, I really do like Reichs' books. I think the main reason is that this is the area of work that I really want to get involved in - forensics and solving crimes. I don't think it will ever be possible so at the moment I have to make do reading about it instead. I also like the way that it really is a story about the life of Temperance Brennan. There are lots of details about what she does in the evening, and she always seems to be eating. Each night when she goes home it revolves around food or meals of some sort. This is a common feature throughout her books, and I know eating is part of everyday life, I'm not sure I've come across it in a book quite so much.

            I am not sure that I would recommend this book, mainly because the theme of the book isn't something that interests me and it is not the best one of hers that I have read. But if you really are interested in bikes then this is the one for you.

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              11.10.2006 21:16
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              Motorcycle Gangs at war on the streets of Quebec lead to the creation of a new task force...

              This is the third in the Tempe Brennan series from author and real-life forensic anthropologist, Kathy Reichs. Some people have said that this work is slightly less enjoyable than the others but ,on the whole, I really enjoyed this novel and the way it takes the reader away from the usual serial killer fare you get with most crime authors.

              The book begins with Temperance being called in to seperate the remains of two members of a biker gang blown up in a hit by a rival gang. A gang war between two rival motorcycle gangs is currently underway in Quebec and, with innocent victims getting caught up in the gun play including a young eight year old girl, a task force is assigned to bring a halt to the ongoing battle on the streets. Temperance, with her expertise , is called in to aid the task force with all its investigations and soon finds herself with the envious job of identifying bones found on one gang's property following a search- who did they belong to and just who put them there are just two of the questions she finds herself asking; meantime her nephew, Kit , is in danger of falling into the wrong crowd over his obsession with Harley Davidson bikes and Tempe's latest attraction, Detective Ryan, is currently under investigation and thus incommunicardo.

              This, for me, has been probably the most enjoyable of Reich's books yet as it examines an all too real situation that goes on all the time across much of America and Canada.The Hells Angel motorcycle gangs and their rivals have many links to organised crime, have been described sometimes as the modern mafia, and all this is enjoyably looked at during the course of this book.

              Once again, as with both previous novels, the pleasure is in the details and all through you are given the impression that Kathy Reichs knows only too well the things she is describing.

              One criticism I have ,however, is that there appears to be an ongoing theme throughout the books so far in that with each novel, someone Tempe knows and is close to is always placed into some kind of danger. With the first book it was her friend doing research amongst the prostitute population, then it was her sister who may or may not have been getting a little too close to a religious cult-now ,in deadly descisions ,both her nephew and her new love face possible dangers of their own. This is only a small slight however and it is so nice to see Kathy Reichs ,heralded as the new queen of forensic fiction , trying her hand with this novel to refresh what can sometimes seem a bit of a tired genre.

              The character of Tempe Brennan is constantly in the process of evolving and likewise goes from strength to strength with each successive novel. It is hard to see how Kathy Reichs can possibly go wrong especially as I hear a series based around the character of Dr.Tempe Brennan has recently been shown apparently to rave reviews on Sky-personally I am not sure if I will want to watch it as I am developing such an affinity for these novels that I wouldn't want to spoil my enjoyment , but this T.V series can only help to boost her profile even further in the long run.

              Overall I am finding Kathy Reichs to be a highly enjoyable author to read and cannot wait to read the next one-maybe I'll even pick up the T.V series on DVD....but thats another story!!

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                16.03.2005 10:25
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                Kathy Reichs’ third novel is Deadly Decisions and I am pleased to report she is succeeding where many authors fail. In a similar way to singers, writers need to put their own ‘stamp’ on their work. You need to be able to tell it’s a book by that author by the style, content and general feel. But this can often mean an author will re-use the same old formula, re-tell the same old story, and re-hash the same old characters.

                Reichs has managed to juggle all this beautifully. You can tell it’s one of her novels, but she changes enough for you to feel it’s a fresh story, while retaining just the right amount of familiar elements.

                Once again, the starring role goes to Dr. Temperance ‘Tempe’ Brennan, American forensic anthropologist working in Montreal, Canada. Many of her work colleagues are those featured in her first two novels (Deja Dead and Death Du Jour) but this time, the relationship with police investigator Andrew Ryan is put on hold, when he is apparently arrested.

                This time, the focus is on the warfare between rival gangs of bikers. When a nine-year-old girl is gunned down in the street - an innocent victim of the increasing violence between the gangs – Tempe feels especially touched by this and wants to help eradicate such incidents as quickly as possible. As well as Tempe’s usual job, this story therefore sees her assisting Operation Carcajou – a multi-agency task force investigating all forms of biker crime and criminal activity.

                Reichs introduces us to several new characters and can always be relied upon to bring them to life through her writing. Whether describing central or incidental characters, tiny details are pointed out which make them realistic. She can also switch easily between gory details of a dead body to beautiful prose, without the text ever seeming awkward.

                Her use of dialogue is well done too and she seems to have an instinct for finding the right balance between reported speech and conversation in the present. While I would never suggest Kathy Reichs was the best writer of all time, her style is fluid and one that I, as a hopeful writer, am envious of.

                Reichs’ books are not for the faint-hearted but neither are they gratuitously gory. In Tempe’s line of work, corpses are a daily chore and her findings are reported factually, without the screaming drama of tabloid headlines. Similarly, the swearing in this novel is measured. I tend to be fairly anti-swearing myself, but she uses such language when it is necessary and would feel wrong without. Let’s face it, if you’re facing an aggressive, tattooed, murderous biker, they’re hardly going to remember their manners and call you ‘sweetie’!

                The story sees Tempe Brennan becoming more involved in the seedy side of the bikers’ underworld, as she has to deal with the fallout of more gang violence. Feeling deeply moved by the murder of the nine-year-old, then a young disabled girl, she throws herself into her work to try to find answers.

                Amidst all of this, she has an unexpected visit from her teenage nephew, Kit. As readers of Reichs’ novels will have noticed, it is a regular occurrence for a family member of Tempe’s to turn up and you won’t be surprised to hear that Kit gets involved somehow. After all, he has developed an obsession with Harley Davidsons and a fascination that could ultimately put his life in danger.

                Still not convinced? Let me sum it up for you. Kathy Reichs writes excellent books really well. They are easy to get into, with a lovely approachable writing style. The stories are complex, but easy enough to follow and the threads are rarely left dangling in thin air. Characters leap out of the pages in glorious 3-D and squat in your mind and hearts for the duration of the book.

                Dr. Temperance Brennan is one of the best female fictional characters I have yet found. She isn’t in her twenties, she isn’t drop dead gorgeous, but I have a suspicion she’s a size 10. Still, I can relate to her in some ways, admire her in many. She is single, a mother, extremely well educated and an inspiration to many around her.

                She is at the top of her profession, but still faces sexism and disbelief from people around her who feel she is doing a “man’s job”. But instead of ranting and raving, she proves her worth by showing she gets results. But she’s not perfect. She’s reckless at times, impulsive and puts herself in danger without always thinking things through. She’s a modern heroine. But a believable one.

                Any disadvantages to the book? Few. As I said before, this is one to avoid if you can’t watch medical programmes on TV and are more at home with 1940s black-and-white movies than Holby City. Otherwise, I’d recommend it to every adult, regardless of age or gender. It’s a compelling novel, one you will find hard to put down. It is exciting, fascinating and absorbing. Like the best kind of lover, it will hold you tight for hours, not letting go until long after its satisfying climax.

                And it’s a damn good read too.




                DEADLY DECISIONS by Kathy Reichs
                ISBN 0-09-930710-3
                www.randomhouse.co.uk
                Cover price £5.99, but I bought mine from Ebay.






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                  14.04.2002 20:10

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                  A well written book, gripping from start to finish. - Advantages: gripping, couldn't put book down - Disadvantages: story's a little too unbelievable

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                  11.12.2001 02:44
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                  Montreal 2000. There is a war going on amongst the city's outlaw motorcycle gangs, who are now controlling the drug trade. Gang members are bumping each other off left, right and centre, and an innocent young girl crossing the road has been killed in the melee. Enter Montreal Chief Coroner and forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan to cut up the bodies and help solve the crimes. Brennan is not only a woman in a man's world, but also an American in a French-Canadian one. Add to this the fact that her bike loving cop boyfriend has been suspended and left her for the bikers, and her teenage bike-loving nephew turns up to stay with her and gets involved with the gangs, and she's fighting a personal as well as professional battle. As the gang warfare unfolds, Brennan discovers more bodies in a woodland grave, including the head (but not body) of a teenage disabled girl, identity unknown, who appears to have been abducted and killed. Deadly Decisions is Reichs' third novel based around Brennan (I've not yet read the first two), and the author seems to have reached the stage where she knows her character very well and effortlessly makes her live on the page. While not as personable and psychologically open as Patricia Cornwell's Kay Scarpetta, Brennan is recognisable and likeable as a woman. Other characters too, from the laid-back nephew to the cold, suspicious Chief of Police and the arrogant FBI Agent are equally well drawn and believable. The writing itself is sleek and flowing, containing some pertinent psychological insights, and the descriptions of autopsy work are detailed but never boring, relating the bones, organs and tissues all the time to their human origins so that you don't get that 'just a piece of meat' feeling you do from some (mostly male, I'm afraid) crime authors. The book builds to a thrilling climax - a real showdown scenario - and our heroin
                  e dodges all manner of jeopardy before of course emerging triumphant. Deadly Decisions is by no means a great novel, and for me it's not up there with Patricia Cornwell's best, but it is a very good read for rainy afternoons, sleepless nights or afternoons in the sun. It's intelligent, pacy, and at times quite exciting. It was also a refreshing change to be in Canada instead of the USA, and Reichs maximises the potential of the city to make her novel different. I found it hard to put down and read it in a couple of days, and would recommend it to anyone who likes a good crime thriller with a bit of gore. The list price is around 6 quid but I got mine for £3.49 from Tesco.

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                    18.09.2001 06:08
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                    • "Slow plot development"

                    In her third novel featuring Dr. Tempe Brennan, Kathy Reichs pits her against the bikers in Montreal. During a teaching course at Quantico, she is recalled urgently to Quebec to examine the mutilated bodies of two bikers blown up in an explosion. A biker war is raging and a little girl ends up being killed as well. Can she stop the fighting? When I read her first novel, the ending disappointed me. It was too predictable, but she then picked up again in the second novel. However, the third one made me feel irritated. Brennan puts herself into danger twice, quite blatantly and quite stupidly, one could say. Also, her nephew Kit quickly became annoying and whilst the identity of the killer was a great surprise, the behaviour and description of the character made it clear all along that there was a link to the bikers - yet Brennan could not see it. These annoying weaknesses have managed to spoil Reichs' latest work. She goes to great lengths to ensure that the reader knows what she is talking about, explaining forensic points in detail, and I certainly learnt a lot about blood spatter patterns, amongst other things. However, this authenticity cannot hide the fact that the book is not as good as the previous one. I was expecting more from it, especially as the publishers continue to promote it with the tagline 'better than Patricia Cornwell'.

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                    20.07.2001 17:10
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                    The third in the series following Dr Temperance Brennan, this is one good book. Dr Temperance Brennan is a forensic anthropologist, working in the state of Quebec, Canada. "Tempe" normally works on crime scenes, where identification of a body or bodies is required. On this occasion however she has also decided to become involved in other Government bodies to help solve crimes surrounding biker gang crimes within the vicinity. Several rival biker gangs have been creating havoc in and around Quebec and innocent people are getting hurt. Each gang have been "taking out" members of other gangs, and in one case an small girl gets caught in the crossfire. It is at this point that Tempe decides to take a more proactive role and become involved. However, in doing so, she inadvertently drags her nephew with her. Her nephew Kit has come to stay for a while, and has an avid interest in motorbikes, especially Harley Davidsons. Kit gets dragged further and further into the world of biker gangs, and without realising it puts himself in danger. Whilst this is happening, Tempe is asked to examine the remains of a body found on the property of one of the bike gang members. This leads to Tempe travelling to America in search of answers, as the body is not a bike gang member and also isn't complete. Whilst carrying out investigations in the States, there is more trouble from the biker gangs and another murder is commited. Tempe goes straight back to Quebec and tries to provide and find answers into the murders, as they are never as straight forward as they may seem. The climax of the novel will have you wondering who will remain to live another day and who will be the next victim of the biker gangs. I have become an avid reader of Kathy Reichs. I enjoy the detail contained in her novels and find them very hard to put down. This book was no different. There are some areas where detail could be enha
                    nced, especially about Quebec, as it is difficult to imagine what the place is like if you haven't been there. However, I still can't to read her next book and hope that there will be plenty more to come. If you like crime and mystery, you'll like this. Can't wait to read her next one "Fatal Voyage".

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                      29.05.2001 07:15
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                      Kathy Reichs is a powerful writer and Deadly Decisions, her third novel featuring forensic anthropologist Dr Tempe Brennan, is possibly the best to date. Tempe starts off by examining the remains of people who have been long dead but she always ends up investigating the manner of their demise. Needless to say, none of her "patients" have died from normal causes. I feel that Kathy Reichs is writing about herself, particularly with regard to her job. Like her character Dr Tempe Brannan, Reichs is a forensic anthropologist dividing her time between the Chief Medical Departments in the State of North Carolina and the province of Quebec. No wonder then that she can give such marvellous insights into the world of forensics. In this novel Tempe gets caught up with a biker gang and the resulting investigation takes the reader into another world where a wrong word can lead to a violent and often deadly confrontation. Slow to get going but after a couple of chapters I don't think you will be able to put this book down. It is quite completely engrossing.

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                    • Product Details

                      Temperance, forensic anthropologist for the state of Quebec, is recalled from a course for a gruesome duty. Biker war is raging in Quebec and two of its foot soldiers have blown themselves up. She is the person qualified to make sense of what remains.