Flash and Bones
Kathy Reichs
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Buy *Flash and Bones* by Kathy Reichs in abridged CD audio format online

Flash and Bones
Kathy Reichs
read by Linda Emond
Simon and Schuster Audio
Unabridged audio/7 CDs
August 2011
rated 3 of 5 possible stars

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Itís the fourteenth entry in the Temperance Brennan series, and with Flash and Bones, Kathy Reichs is clearly trying to tap into a different market. In this one, you get what you expect from Reichs - mystery and forensics - but get this: NASCAR, too!

A couple hundred thousand fans are expected to come into Charlotte, North Carolina, for Race Week at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. Brennan is pulled over by the local police and asked to look at a body in thirty-five-gallon drum filled with asphalt. Thatís about all Iím going to describe about the plot.

As someone who enjoys listening to audiobooks, itís really not my aim to disparage authors or their works. Even dark clouds have a silver lining, and even a bad book has some redeeming value. Sometimes itís a character, or a situation, or a scene. Iím afraid to say that Flash and Bones came straight out of the cookie-cutter factory. The plot is un-compelling, to say the least, and takes a backseat to character - of which there wasnít much. There also isnít much forensic anthropology, and the attempts at humor fall flat.

Flash and Bones being a shorter book (and I donít judge a book on length or page count), I was expecting a tight thriller from beginning to end. Instead, everyone seems to be just going through the motions. I donít want or expect humor or lots of pop culture injected into these kinds of books. I expect cookie-cutter plots from James Patterson. If I want a funny female character, Iíll pick up a Stephanie Plum novel; fans read those for the characters, not the plot. But to have these two elements creeping into a Temperance Brennan novel is very disappointing. The character is not built for either comedy or witty repartee.

As for this unabridged audiobook, you do get a quality production - there is nothing shoddy about that. Narrator Linda Emond does a fantastic job. I have no complaints about the audio at all. But be forewarned: the unabridged audio is only seven discs, so if you were hoping to kill some time on a long drive, you might want to pick up the previous title (the 13th) in the series from Reichs, Spider Bones. But, if you are an ardent fan or a completest, youíll probably give this one a shot. Just make sure you are listening to it on a medium drive or a short flight.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. © Bobby Blades, 2011

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