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Déjà Dead by Kathy Reichs
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Déjà Dead (1997)

by Kathy Reichs

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Temperance Brennan (1)

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Recently added byprivate library, EdJWebb, jocn, Kiara_Brady, ChrisNorbury, Y2Ash

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English (92)  German (1)  French (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (95)
Showing 1-5 of 92 (next | show all)
Listened to the abridged version via e-audiobook and realized once again why I don't care for abridged versions of stories. The depth of reader involvement is missing when so many scenes and characters are glossed over.

On top of that, Amy Irving gave a rather somnolent reading which failed to add to the intensity or my interest in the book. ( )
  ChrisNorbury | Apr 17, 2014 |
This is the first book in the Temperance Brennan series. Tempe is a forensic anthropologist working in Quebec. When she is called in to examine some bones, she seems to think there is a serial killer out there, but the police don't agree. She tries to find links so she can convince them she is on the right track. In the meantime, she has an anthropologist friend working with prostitutes who she is quite worried about.

I really liked this! I was a little surprised at how short it was, but it was still really good. There are so many books in the series, but I will keep going. I actually quite enjoyed the narrator of the audio, as well.

(Well, crap! It turns out it was an abridged edition! :-( No wonder it was so short, but I guess it's good that I didn't notice anything obvious was missing...) ( )
  LibraryCin | Feb 4, 2014 |
Crime fiction really isn't my favourite genre, but I was looking for novels set in Montreal and Kathy Reichs' series was listed, so hey ho. I would describe the first book in the Temperance Brennan series - written in the mid-90s and now horrendously dated - in these words: 'Not as annoying as the television series'. In fact, book Brennan is more a Sue Grafton type character than the socially inept, Spock-like TV version - which I was very thankful for.

The murders, both old and new, were sufficiently gruesome and dramatic to keep me reading and guessing (though I had a hunch how the killer would be traced early on), but I felt that the 'abused as a child' schtick was a bit of a let down when the murderer was revealed. And while I'm sure that dragging the narrator into the danger is supposed to make for a more exciting story, Brennan's involvement was a bit Scooby-Dooish: 'If it hadn't been for you meddling anthropologists ..!'

I can see why Reichs' books are popular - they pass the time, if nothing else - but I read for the characters, and Brennan isn't original enough to make me a fan. ( )
  AdonisGuilfoyle | Jan 18, 2014 |
I knew somewhere in the back of my head that this series loosely formed the basis for Bones, but thankfully, I haven't seen Bones, so I was able to come to this novel without any preformed expectations.

This was part of my November mystery challenge, to read at least three mystery titles by popular authors, in different subgenres. I've always been fascinated with forensic mysteries, but haven't read many examples...the only one I can think of immediately is Patricia Cornwell.

Anyway the basic premise is that there is a possible serial killer on the loose in Canada - three female bodies have been found dismembered and brutally mutilated. Forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan thinks that these murders might be connected with other unsolved murders over the last couple years, but not everyone in the department follows her line of thinking. And what's worse is that all signs point to more murders in the very near future.

The main reason to pick up this book is the sheer amount of detail that goes into this story. From my understanding, the author has experience as a forensic anthropologist, and she manages to craft an intelligent and believable story without letting it get too bogged down in the details. And I also liked how she juggled several subplots along with the main storyline without the story becoming too confused. It just felt like a solid, well crafted novel. (Although the story definitely shows its age when it comes to describing technology...Tempe spends a short paragraph marveling at the miracles of email. Imagine!)

Tempe is a fun heroine to spend time with. Besides being vastly intelligent and determined, she has a stubborn, sarcastic streak that can either serve her well or get her into more trouble.

The description above actually sounds a little like Stephanie Plum from the Janet Evanovich series, but the the tones are completely different: Deja Dead is definitively on the dark side of the literary spectrum.

There's a steady increase of tension as Tempe and her colleagues move closer to the killer, but there aren't any big plot twists or sudden revelations. This was the main reason why I gave this novel four stars instead of five, but not because there weren't any plot twists - because the story kept hinting at big revelations (mainly from Tempe's consistent thinking that she had overlooked a vital clue) and didn't fully deliver. I felt like I was on the edge of my seat for the last third of the novel, and when I finally reached the climax, I was a little let down.

But I really liked this novel, and I'll probably give the second novel a try, which I don't usually do, especially with mystery series. A solid (if slightly dated) forensic police procedural with a healthy dose of technical detail.

Readalikes:

Postmortem - Patricia Cornwell. Another extremely popular forensic police procedural, although Kay Scarpetta is a medical examiner, as opposed to a forensic anthropologist. Both series feature strong, intelligent heroines as well as a significant amount of technical detail in a way that's easy for the average person to understand.

Suzanne Chazin (From Novelist). Arson investigators find themselves involved with gripping and complex murders, and like Tempe, must deal with obstacles such as greed and corruption from their higher-ups and sexism in the work force.

Tess Gerritsen. Rizzoli and Isles, a medical examiner and a police detective working as partners, often find themselves focusing on work to escape personal issues, and these novels feature just as many gory details as Deja Dead. ( )
  coloradogirl14 | Dec 10, 2013 |
I enjoyed this book because it takes place in Montreal. I like that the author used French words mixed with the English in the text. I enjoyed that she talked about how the characters switched between the two languages and made mention of regionalisms specific to Quebec.

Temperance Brennan in the books is a very different character than on the TV show "Bones". The book goes into great detail about forensic science. ( )
  RKoletteL | Aug 22, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (19 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kathy Reichsprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jääskeläinen, JukkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sirola, JukkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Karl and Marta Reichs, the two kindest and most generous people I know. Paldies par jusu milestibu, Vecamamma un Paps.

Karlis Reichs 1914-1996
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I wasn't thinking about the man who'd blown himself up. Earlier I had. Now I was putting him together.
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Book description
Forensic pathologist, Tempe Brennan plans a quiet weekend. Duty calls, however, when body parts surface. They eerily remind Tempe of an unsolved case - the torture and murder of a 16-year old girl several years earlier. Tempe suspects a link between the two, maybe even a serial killer, but the police remain skeptical.
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As forensic scientist Temperance Brennan works on the dismembered remains of a murder victim, she begins to suspect--despite the skepticism of local police--that there is a link between this homicide and the torture-killing of a teenager several years earlier.… (more)

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