Tuesday, 21 June 2011

TEEN: Virals - Kathy Reichs

Release Date: 19/05/11


Kathy Reichs takes forensics to a new level. Tory Brennan is as fascinated by bones and dead bodies as her famous aunt, acclaimed forensic anthropologist, Tempe Brennan. However living on a secluded island off Charleston in South Carolina there is not much opportunity to put her knowledge to the test. Until she and her group of technophile friends stumble across a shallow grave containing the remains of a girl who has been missing for over thirty years. With the cold-case murder suddenly hot, Tory realises that they are involved in something fatally dangerous. And when they rescue a sick dog from a laboratory on the same island, it becomes evident that somehow the two events are linked. On the run from forces they don't understand, they have only each other to fall back on. Until they succumb to a mysterious infection that heightens their senses and hones their instincts to impossible levels. Their illness seems to have changed their very biology - and suddenly it's clear that the island is home to something well beyond their comprehension. It's a secret that has driven men to kill once. And will drive them to kill again...


Having read Kathy’s work for a number of years I was interested to see what she’d do with a whole new series and especially one aimed for the young reader. Here she brings her mystery skills to the younger audience where she blends a wonderful story arc with an old crime and presents the reader with a wide ranging story arc that will keep the reader guessing for quite some time.

Whilst overall this title was a joy to read I did have one key gripe. That Kathy’s addition of Urban Fantasy elements to the tale set in the same world as her adult tales featuring Tempe Brennan (she’s the lead characters Great Aunt) felt like she was taking the mick. Likewise had Kathy steered clear of the Brennan name then the tale would have worked as an Urban Fantasy. It just feels that too many coincidences ruined this part of the believability.

That said, Tory (our lead character) was fun, and whilst a younger version of Tempe she was fresh, she had goals and her emotional aspects kept the reader coming back for more even if some elements had a famous five feel. All in this title was a fun book to read and I will read others in the series but to make such a basic error as to place it in the same setting as her adult titles really shouldn’t have happened.

1 comment:

  1. You know, I really just didn't enjoy Virals. It didn't stand out to me as anything phenomenal. It's good, but I didn't think it was great. Good review, though!