Flash and Bones

It’s quite a while since I actually read Flash and Bones, but I wrote my thoughts down straight after I finished it.  Writing up the full review though has taken ages, because I couldn’t shake the feeling that although this was a good read, it’s just not up to usual Reichs standard.

I know nothing of the American NASCAR event, but Reichs brings her usual excellent level of research to Flash and Bones.  The explanations and detail about the racing were interesting and entirely believable to someone who has no clue, and it worked really well as the setting for the story.  If you’re a fan of car racing or NASCAR specifically, it’ll probably be even more engaging.

Although the plot had a very narrow focus, Kathy Reichs still managed to build a lot of tension, confusion and misdirection into it.  The pacing was good and the ending was pretty climactic, and thanks to those misdirections I was ultimately surprised about who was behind it all.

I struggled with the flashback approach used in the book, where previous events are told in present tense, it felt a little odd for some reason.  I did like the beginning line however, and how significant it would turn out to be (not saying anything more)!

For the characters, Galimore was an interesting addition and I actually found him more interesting than Ryan and Charlie throughout the book.  I don’t know whether he will show up in later books but he was appealing and I liked him a lot.  Frankly I wish Tempe had given the two FBI suits a kick in the nuts.  They were annoying.

Overall, it’s a good, enjoyable read, and by another author would probably have left me feeling more satisfied, but for a Kathy Reichs book, it just didn’t quite hit all the marks.

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Book Information
  • Author: Kathy Reichs
  • Buy from Amazon (UK)

You Belong to Me

When a mutilated body is left close to her home, Forensic Pathologist Dr. Lucy Trask is shocked, but the eventuality is just another day at the office.  As she performs the autopsy puzzling things are revealed.  The figure ‘I’ has been burned into the victim’s back, the heart, eyes and tongue all carefully removed,  actions that appear to have obvious meaning for the killer.  Neither Lucy, nor Detective JD Fitzpatrick, have any clue what the message is supposed to tell them.  When the body is finally identified, Lucy realises she had a connection to him, and finding him was no accident.  Another body is left for her, with the same mutilations, and that additional connection leads Lucy to something from her past.  Tragic events, hidden truths and cover-ups from her childhood resurface, and a simple bracelet is her only clue to to the killer’s mysterious intent.

I had a list of things to do today, nothing that important, just usual day to day things.  I started reading You Belong to Me with a morning coffee and everything else went out the window, I could not put it down!  Right from the first page I was intrigued, and got completely caught up in the story.  I even had to stop myself from flipping to the back page to see how it turned out, it was that intense, and I’m glad I didn’t in the end.

The main characters were superbly brought to life and I cared so much about JD and Lucy, at times I didn’t want to turn a page for fear of what was going to happen to them.  The moments between the two were so sweet and powerful, it left me a little breathless.  The supporting characters were just as well written, and I had a lot of affection for some of them, but as it should be, they didn’t hold quite as much of my heart as JD and Lucy.

The story itself was amazing.  The plot was both intricate and simple, almost as if two layers are going on at the same time, and I honestly don’t know how Karen Rose kept it all straight.  It was never confusing, however, and I think that is where this book went from a great read, to an outstanding one.

It was truly chilling at times, especially when the antagonist was centre stage or when his handywork had been left to be discovered.  Getting ‘into’ the killer’s head can’t have been easy, nor describing his deeds, yet Rose managed it in a believable and convincing manner.

The pace of the story was excellent, utterly gripping and tuned just right to keep me turning the pages as fast as I could read.

You Belong to Me has now become one of my favourite books from Karen Rose and is quite possibly the best one she has written… so far!

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Book Information
  • Author: Karen Rose
  • Buy from Amazon (UK)