Review: Fatal Voyage, by Kathy Reichs

A few weeks ago I received Fatal Voyage in the mail, having sent away for it as part of a promotion by some cereal company. (I can’t remember which cereal company it was, and so I suppose that it didn’t work). I had filled out the form online and then promptly forgotten about the whole thing, and so the book essentially arrived out of the blue. I love it when that happens.

I picked this particular book from those that were on offer only because I knew that this series is the one that inspired the Bones TV show. And I really, really enjoy Bones.

I’ll say this first: I really, really enjoyed Fatal Voyage as well. Here’s the back cover:

A commercial airliner disaster has brought Tempe Brennan to the North Carolina mountains as a member of the investigative agency DMORT. As bomb theories abound, Tempe soon discovers a jarring piece of evidence that raises dangerous questions — and gets her thrown from the DMORT team. Relentless in her pursuit of its significance, Tempe uncovers a shocking, multilayered tale of deceit and depravity as she probes her way into frightening territory — where someone wants her stopped in her tracks.

Mystery! Savagery! Graphic forensic details! Kidnapping! Corruption! Murder! Cannibalism! Dog-sitting! Just my cup of tea, in fact. There’s nothing like a good murder for some light reading.

I thought that the story was very well-wrought and the characterization strong (although I must say that it definitely ought to have been, since this is something like number ten in the series). But the most interesting part — apart from the plot — was looking for the similarities and differences between the book and Bones as-seen-on-TV.

This version of Temperance Brennan is blond and in her forties, and has an ex-husband, a university-aged daughter, and a cat. There’s no Booth or Zack or Angela or Hodgins… or anyone from the TV series, really, except for Tempe herself. There are lots of little differences like that.

But! There are things the same too, and they are the more important things. Although the Tempe of the books is older than TVTempe, her internal characteristics are the same. She’s the same smart, gutsy lady and works the same way in both versions. I liked that — although I know that it’s really the show following the book well, it felt like the opposite based on the order in which I encountered the two different versions.

If you enjoy watching Bones, you will probably enjoy reading Kathy Reichs’s series as well. And if you’ve read the series but have never watched the show, likewise. They’re fun.

5 thoughts on “Review: Fatal Voyage, by Kathy Reichs

  1. I just love Kathy Reichs' Tempe Brennan series. They are wonderful! And Bones is great, too – it's just hard to tie the two together, as everything seems so different for the sake of making it work on TV.


  2. I adore Reichs…and I liked this one a lot too. But, I don't like the TV series…none of the characters fit my mental image of what I think they should look like and act like after reading the books *laughs*Wendy’s latest blog post:Why…


  3. Well, I came to the show before I read any of the books, and so my experience is probably different than yours. I like the TV series better, now, I think — after reading several more Reichs novels I've cottoned on to the patterns therein, which makes them more difficult to enjoy.I totally understand what you mean about it being strange when they don't match what's in your head, though! That's the biggest reason I try to avoid reading illustrated versions of books I've read already. It's just never quite right, somehow.


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