Sunday Mini Reviews: The Tempe Brennan series by Kathy Reichs

Searching Kathy Reichs on this blog will show two reviews: Devil Bones and Bones to Ashes. I have however read all books in the Tempe Brennan series (except the latest one 206 Bones, which is on my TBR). A complete list (except the latest one) can be seen here. Since I’ve been reading the series before I began blogging, I think that a couple of Sunday Mini Reviews are in order. I have to admit, though, that I cannot remember the exact plot of each and every book in the series, but I remember if I liked the book or not (mainly because I liked almost all of them).

The first book in the series is Deja Dead. At this point I was a huge fan of Patricia Cornwell’s Kay Scarpetta series, and wasn’t really sure that another forensic-examiner-woman-sleuth would be nearly as good. But what a debute! I simply loved it and was chilled to the bone(!), even though I read it while I was living in Cairo and it was hot, hot, hot summertime. I found both plotline and character development to be bulls eye. Here is what Amazon.com says:

Actress Amy Irving’s low-key approach fits first novelist Reichs’s on-the-edge-of- your-seat thriller  perfectly. Montreal forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan is called upon when seemingly old bones are unearthed. She unwittingly stumbles upon a headless?and fresh?corpse. Research into other murders convinces her that a pattern is emerging and perhaps a serial killer is on the loose.

Loving forensics and loving serial killer mysteries, there wasn’t anything not to be thrilled about in this first book. If you haven’t read it and like a good mystery, then it is highly recommendable.

The followed number 2 which was almost as good as number 1. Number 3 was the one with the bikers, and that didn’t really interest me, so wasn’t completely taken with that one. Number 4 was about the plane crash and I remember it had a surprising ending. 5 in the series took place in Guatemala and was an okay read, and the next one, 6, I don’t remember at all. I had to look it up at Amazon, and by reading their summary, I remember that this was the first one where I was a bit disappointed. Tempe’s feistyness began to annoy me. Tempe’s lecturing about forensic science (in what I found a patronizing way) also bega to annoy me, and this annoyance has stayed with me during all the remaining books. So reading number 7, I was already a bit annoyed, but remember an okay read. And then comes number 8. One of the most irritating books I’ve ever read. It came hot on the heels of the whole Da Vinci Code-frenzy, and it was definitely too thick. Its about the bones of Jesus and Tempe working in Israel and such. Boring and unneccessary. To be avoided.

As you can imagine, I wasn’t thrilled and I didn’t get to a Tempe Brennan book in a long time. But when I did pick up the next one, 9, I was very pleasantly surprised, because it was very good. And for 10 and 11, you can click the links above to see what I thought of them. But since I’ve purchased number 12, I guess you already have detected that I like them. Really, number 8 is the only one which really stinks. There are a couple I didn’t really care for, but not in such a way that I was very disappointed or overly annoyed.

The conclusion is that number 1 was the best! And if you are only going to read one Kathy Reichs novel, then that has got to be the one! But the whole series is recommendable.