cover image Speaking in Bones

Speaking in Bones

Kathy Reichs. Bantam, $28 (320p) ISBN 978-0-345-54404-9

Forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan doesn’t think very highly of Hazel Strike and her fellow “websleuths,” amateurs who gather online to try and solve crimes and locate missing persons, in bestseller Reichs’s solid 18th novel featuring Brennan (after 2014’s Bones Never Lie). Hazel is convinced that bones in Brennan’s Mecklenburg County, N.C., lab belong to 18-year-old Cora Teague, who disappeared more than three years earlier. Trouble is, no one officially reported Cora missing. Cora’s parents, who belong to a fringe Pentecostal church, claim Cora left town with a boy. Despite little evidence to support Hazel’s theory, Brennan investigates Cora’s family, as well as the boy Cora supposedly left town with, and uncovers some shocking secrets. With Brennan’s beau, Quebec homicide detective Andrew Ryan, in Canada, local deputy Zeb Ramsey lends a hand in the increasingly bizarre—and dangerous—investigation. Brennan’s on-again/off-again relationship with Ryan brings some welcome romantic interest to this multilayered series. Agent: Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, William Morris Endeavor. (July)