Leta’s Book Review: Cold, Cold Bones by Kathy Reichs

Cold, Cold Bones by Kathy Reichs

Mystery/Thriller, Adult

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5


I want to thank Netgalley and Simon&Schuster for the chance to read this ARC in exchange for an honest review.


Cold, Cold Bones is the first of Temperance Brennan’s adventure’s that I’ve read, though it is the 21st novel in the series. Temperance Brennan or Tempe, I soon found out, is the medical examiner for a police department in North Carolina and has assisted detectives with solving crimes with her specialty: forensic anthropology. She had just finished helping her daughter move in when she received a mysterious package that soon turned suspicious. It was an eyeball, seemingly fresh and without its owner. It did have one clue, however. Written in the tiniest font along the side of the eyeball was a set of GPS coordinates that led her and Detective Erskine “Skinny” Slidell to the first of several seemingly unrelated corpses. The mystery ravels around itself, leading Slidell and Tempe towards a potentially deadly climax.

This novel was the perfect mix of unexplainably creepy and matter-of-fact explanations. Though the science behind forensic anthropology is complex, I understood the concepts and science behind Tempe’s work through Kathy Reichs’s descriptions. I felt included in the discussions, since there was a clear logic to follow rather than the characters talking over my head using words and concepts that weren’t explored in either dialogue or the prose.

It feels difficult to comment on the characters, since it felt like they were so established that I wasn’t introduced. This makes sense, this being the 21st book in the series. The characters were very solidly characterized, however, and it was easy to tell that apart and understand the fundamentals of who they were and what they’d been through. Though I would always recommend starting at the beginning of a series, jumping into the middle of this one with Cold, Cold Bones wasn’t as jarring or confusing as it could have been. Tempe was the most rounded character, since we saw through her eyes and shared the knowledge and experience from her mind and thoughts.

As always with mysteries, I ask myself at the end: was it successful? Cold, Cold Bones was a successful mystery to me. It was suspenseful, action-packed, and constantly turning my predictions on its head. I truly had no idea who was behind the murders/crimes until near the end – there was one detail I felt that gave it away before Tempe figured it out, but it didn’t ruin the impact of Tempe’s reaction to figuring it out.

Overall, I gave Cold, Cold Bones by Kathy Reichs 4 out of 5 stars. For what it was, it was a great read and I recommend checking out Kathy Reichs series, whether it’s this novel specifically or the series entirely. Your time will be well spent on Cold, Cold Bones.


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