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Cornwell Fans Should Hitch This Ride
Biker wars, buried secrets, and an ever-rising body count -- forensic anthropologist Dr. Tempe Brennan is back in Deadly Décisions, a bloody new thriller that's sure to keep your heart pumping. In a tale that hits Brennan close to home, Kathy Reichs, international bestselling author of Déjà Dead and Death du Jour, is nothing short of dead-on.
Rival outlaw motorcycle gangs, the Heathens and the Vipers, are embroiled in a -- quite literally -- explosive battle for control of the drug trade in the streets of Montreal, and Tempe Brennan is left to sort out the remains of les motards who are targeted in the outbreak of bombings and shootings. The pompous officers she's working with, Quickwater and Claudel, are no picnic, and her love life is in a blowout, as well -- Andrew Ryan, the homicide detective she's been seeing, has just been busted on drug charges. But when a nine-year-old girl, Emily Anne Toussant, is caught in the crossfire, Brennan puts her personal troubles aside making it her mission to find the murderers and bring an end to the killing.
The case takes a dark turn, however, when a grave on Viper turf turns up not only murdered bikers but also the partial remains of a teenage girl missing for years from North Carolina as well. And while Tempe's investigation has her face splashed across the front pages of the Montreal newspapers, she soon discovers that someone sinister is watching her even more closely; she knows that if she doesn't step carefully, her body may be next on the table.
Kathy Reichs's own expertise as a forensic anthropologist is invaluable, for as always, her latest shines with razor-sharp scientific authenticity. Whether combing the soil for bodies with a radar that detects disturbances in the earth's density, comparing bone samples for growth defects, or running DNA sequencing on skeletons that have been hidden in the earth for more than a decade, Brennan is not only an authoritative medical expert, she's downright fascinating. And while the tale outside the office is a deeply moving one, Reichs pulls no punches in the autopsy room, where death is a reality, and with bodies that are more often than not sorted out in plastic bags -- well, it ain't always pretty.
She won't be giving you nightmares, however, because you won't be able to put this one down long enough to sleep. Brennan is smart-mouthed, sarcastic, and street-savvy -- but with every step she's treading deeper and deeper into the dark underworld of the outlaw bikers, and the stakes couldn't be higher. Reichs handles the narrative magnificently, with short chapters that keep the story cruising and hairpin plot turns that keep the suspense roaring like a Harley. Taking you from Quebec to North Carolina and back again, Deadly Décisions is Kathy Reichs at her most bone-chilling, and it's a guaranteed thrill ride.
Elise Vogel is a freelance writer living in New York City.