by Kathy Reichs
March may be the cruelest month for Tempe Brennan. As a forensic anthropologist—one of the tiny band whose facility with skeletal remains helps coroners solve particularly baffling cases—death is a part of her life. But even so, the five corpses she is called to examine at a torched Quebec farmhouse—among them the mutilated, doll-size bodies of a pair of 4-month-old twins—are enough to give her the willies.
Before Brennan can complete her analysis for homicide detective Andrew Ryan, the blue-eyed charmer she alternately loathes and lusts after, her expertise is needed in another, possibly related, case. And then another. And the more she and Ryan discover about the growing circle of victims, the greater risk they run of sharing their grisly fate.
As she did in her knockout 1997 debut, Déjà Dead, Reichs taps into her own expertise as a forensic anthropologist to bring a unique perspective to her story of madness and murder. More important, she knows how to spin an atmospheric, suspensefully paced yarn, one that is likely to leave you with the shivers of an ice storm on Quebec’s haunted Plains of Abraham. (Scribner, $25)
Bottom Line: Bone-chilling prime crime