‘Like watching season 4 of Buffy’ – Speaking in Bones by Kathy Reichs

krsibI blame David Boreanaz. I do.

You’ve seen Bones. It stars Emily Deschanel as Bones, based on the character of Bones, from the Bones books, that are written by Bones, the fictional character in Bones, the television series about Bones, who writes books about a character called Bones, which she bases on her fictional life as Bones, the character in the book based on the television series called Bones. In the television version she is surrounded by quirky sexy scientists and FBI agents who help her by doing things like being knowledgeable about insects or being really good at art and having someone out of a fictional version of ZZ Top as a dad. Or being David Boreanaz. You’ve seen Bones. It is stupid and fun and in no way related to the investigation of any actual crimes anywhere on earth. It is what it is. It has David Boreanaz in it. David Boreanaz. What more could you possibly want?

Kathy Reichs has worked as a producer on Bones, which is, it turns out, only loosely based on her novels. Loosely as in the lead character has the same name. No insects. No ZZ Top dads. No David Boreanaz. This is a problem.

You see, when you are used to getting David Boreanaz, and then no David Boreanaz appears, there can only be disappointment. Reading Speaking in Bones was like watching season 4 of Buffy (but without Hush, and the other good episodes, and all the bits with Anya in). No. It’s like watching that two parter at the end of season 4 of Buffy (but without the bits with Angel in the first one, and…) No. It’s… oh you know what I mean. IT HASN’T GOT DAVID BOREANAZ IN IT. And for that I blame David Boreanaz. Or myself. Probably myself.

And what do I blame Kathy Reichs for? Nothing. I suppose. If I had done my research before requesting the book to review I would have known that lines like “Ramsey’s directions guided me to the end of a blacktop lined with cuter-than-Heidi’s-bloomers log cabins…” passed for acceptable prose in the post-Chandler cuteism laden world the novel inhabits. We are firmly in the detective-opens-a-bottle-of-bad-scotch-and-tells-you-their-tale school of crime novel here. Everyone is a smart arse. Everyone has a cute comeback to even the most innocuous of questions. A lot of readers like that sort of thing. I don’t. As I say, I should have done my research.

If you do like that sort of crime fiction you will like this book. But, if you do like the Bones books why on earth would you be reading this review? You already know you will like the book. It’s like the eighteenth of a series or something. I am wasting time. I mean, I don’t mind. It’s fine. Everyone else is at the beach and I am sat in the kitchen writing this (I’m not even making this up, I am writing this on holiday, and everyone is at the beach except me) and for what? The eighteenth of a series. Buy it or don’t buy it. You don’t need me.

Any Cop?: In my dreams, my wildest dreams, my fantasies if you will, in the final episode of Bones, David Boreanaz will remove the Gem of Amara and reveal that he has been Angel all along and that his dark past is not just his work as a sniper for the US Government but also the several hundred years he spent stalking Europe as a soulless vampire before he was cursed by gypsies (and given a soul). I would wager I am not alone in this. Maybe I am. Anyway, whether I am or not, Speaking in Bones does not further this possibility. It doesn’t even, and I may have mentioned this already, feature any version of David Boreanaz, fictional or otherwise. It probably should. Buy it or don’t buy it. I really don’t care.

Benjamin Judge




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