I am a Tempe Brennan fan, but not to rake up old bones, this is a stand-alone diversion. A fast moving exciting tale for whom, if it was for a debut novelist, I’d be encouragingly optimistic.
But Kathy Reichs is a furnace-cured seasoned author of some stature and, unfortunately, this tale is not up to her usual standard.
The plot is satisfactory. Tough ex-Afghanistan Vet, ex-cop, a feisty woman by the name of Sunday Night with psychological issues and physical scars living as recluse, is called on to investigate the missing, maybe dead, teenaged grandchild of a wealthy Chicago woman. After much soul searching she sets out to so. No spoilers.
The flow is interrupted, rather than punctuated, by the scenes of a young girl in the captivity of what appears to be a religious cult. It is gripping, though, and there is plenty of biting humour. The subsidiary characters, however, are not as well portrayed and I found the appearance of her twin brother, seemingly out of nowhere, puzzling, although they made a great team.
There are twists but not devastatingly so.
A William Heinemann imprint from Penguin Random House UK. Thank you to Penguin Random House SA for the ARC.