Investigating a plane crash in the Smoky Mountains in North Carolina, forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan discovers in a most disturbing way that the evidence doesn’t add up. Tripping over a coyote-chewed leg at the crash scene, she performs a little mental arithmetic and realizes that this victim wasn’t on the plane. Once again, Brennan’s high-tech DMORT snaps into action faster than you can say “Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team.”
Let me just scream out, “Hallelujah!”
I honestly wasn’t sure I’d be able to continue with this series at the rate I was going. The first three books were terrible and I’m not really sure how this series got popular. Then I got to Final Voyage and I now feel as if I can glimpse something there. It’s promising and has some real potential. I’m surprised to admit that I have hope (although I realize this is probably not a good sign, based on my prior experiences).
In this fourth novel, Dr. Temperance Brennan is called to the site of a plane crash. (This brings a sense of irony as the title makes it sound like it should have to do with a boat, but who cares?) When she discovers a foot of a victim who is not accounted for based off of the plane manifests, things begin to fall apart. She’s accused of acting unprofessionally and removing evidence from the scene. Her reputation is being drug threw the mud as she struggles to figure out what has caused her to become enemy number one in the press. Meanwhile, she’s also finding that this foot is leading her to uncover a dark secret that has deadly consequences for the elderly patrons in the area.
Let’s get my one gripe out of the way: Why was Detective Ryan at this crime scene? I get that his friend was in the crash, but he is a Canadian investigator who is working a case in the United States. I know he’s supposed to be the romantic interest. However, this was forcing him into the picture and it annoyed me. It’s almost as if the author does not believe that Tempe can do something without a man.
On to the mildly good stuff: I really liked this storyline. In the previous books Temperance was such a flat and unlikeable character. The author literally had to use family drama just to make her slightly human. I felt like this was the first time Tempe felt like a real woman. Making it so people were questioning her integrity and ethics really made her realistic. That’s to say nothing about her “relationship” with her ex-husband, Pete.
I really enjoyed the plot of this book. I find there is always something intriguing when a character has to really work to uncover the truth behind a mystery. The author still has some holes in the plot, but I felt this book had a little more cohesion and realistic flair about it. I didn’t even mind that it was kind of reminiscent to an earlier book…
Four books in and I’m still not impressed, but at least I enjoyed this story. Hopefully the author can worry less about Tempe’s thongs (Yes, she brought up the stupid thongs again!) and give her some personality.