Déjà Dead (Temperance Brennan, #1)

ISBN: 2266090143
ISBN 13: 9782266090148
By: Kathy Reichs Laurence Ink

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About this book

Anthropologiste judiciaire, Temperance Brennan n'aura pas le tranquille week-end qu'elle l'espérait. Convoquée d'urgence, elle doit examiner les restes d'une femme découpée en morceaux, que la police vient de découvrir dans l'ancien parc du Grand Séminaire. A partir de ces éléments macabres, elle tente d'identifier la victime. Les ressemblances entre ce crime et celui d'une jeune fille commis un an plus tôt la persuade de l'existence d'un tueur en série. Cette thèse est d'abord combattue par les policiers mais la découverte d'un autre cadavre réussit à les convaincre. Les meurtres continuent et à la suite d'une erreur du tueur, Temperance se lance sur la piste. Elle ignore encore qu'elle figure en bonne place sur sa liste, comme future victime. Ce premier roman de Kathy Reichs, qui exerce le même métier que son héroïne, ne décevra pas les amateurs de suspense et de course poursuite. Un thriller dans la veine de l'univers de Patricia Cornwell, avec tous les ingrédients du genre. --Claude Mesplède

Reader's Thoughts


After hearing a lot of hype about Kathy Reichs I decided to give her books a go. Luckily her first 10 books were going cheap from The Book People in paperback form so I bought them and settled in to see what all the fuss was about. For this first book I have to say for me it didn't quite live up to the hype, but it was a solid start and while it felt sort of jerky and rough in a way I felt it was a good effort to say the least. Essentially what I'm trying to say is, don't give up on her books if you think this one isn't 'that good' - she hit her stride from book 2 onward and the rest have been even better to say the least. The subsequent books flow well, and while she does occasionally use an obvious kind of foreshadowing around the end of early chapters that I really HATE in stories (e.g. 'little did she know blah blah' ick!), it's a habit that she really cut back on for the later books and they're all the better for it in my opinion. So - a good start and worth reading, but the others in the series are even better. Gripping stuff :-)


I liked this book, but can't help but think it could have been helped by a bit more editing and about 50 less pages. It was interesting to have descriptions of some of the details behind the "CSI"-type magic, but once or twice the descriptions seemed awkward; one scientist explaining a technology to another scientist that they would have already known. I haven't been to Montreal, but the descriptions seemed nicely atmospheric. Lots of descriptions of the dead bodies and what was done to them, so not a good choice if you're in the mood for a cozy mystery. Good suspense and pacing, bu with the occassional urge to yell at the main character "pay attention, the man with the knife is behind the door."


Separate the tv show and this book. You will be very disappointed if you come in thinking it'll be like the tv show. The characters, setting, and story are drastically different. However, I think this book is a lot better than the show and I liked the first seasons of Bones. The lead character is more believable. She has faults like any normal human being and doesn't always make the smart choices. She isn't a superhero on crack (she actually gets pretty banged up). The character seems more human. She's not out of touch with reality like how the TV show plays Brennan.The author's descriptions are detailed and medically oriented. I enjoyed that as someone in a medical profession, but you don't need to be to understand. The French I feel the same. I don't speak French, but had no trouble following. There really is very little actual French in the book and most characters speak to her in English as Brennan is an American-born doctor. There isn't a lot of romantic tension in this book. It builds up over the series if you keep reading. This is the first book which really sets the background for later books.Fair warning: The crimes ARE violent and emotionally disturbing at times. This book isn't for people who want to read sunshine and roses or want a superhero who always saves the day. It's definitely dark. There are some sad moments that made me want to light the book on fire. If you've never read a crime novel or aren't really into them I'd suggest something else- not this series.


I'm happy to report I've found a new series that I really enjoyed-- although not for the faint of heart or sensitive of stomachs. It took me longer than usual to get over the opening chapters because this author is as precise in the physiological details as I've ever read-- I could practically smell the decay. Once I mastered "skimming the grossest of details," I was hooked!This novel features some interesting characters and I love that it's set in Montreal, Quebec... a city I didn't know much about until reading this book (and hey, I can say &%*hole en Francais now... a little cultural bonus my French-speaking children enjoyed).The book cover proclaimed that this series is the basis for the Bones show on Fox-TV, but that isn't why I picked it up. However, I did agree with one of the book notes-- if you like Patricia Cornwell, then you'll enjoy this author just as much! I've been looking for a new mystery series to indulge myself in, and this one is perfect!


I love the TV show Bones, so after reading about Kathy Reichs and her books I had to try one. It was a little hard to get into at first. Can't exactly put my finger on why, but the writing style was just different, along with the fact that all the locations in Canada were unfamiliar to me. I hung in there tho and got hooked on it and have since ordered the second one in the series. The book is definitely grittier than the TV show and lacking any of the humor you find on Bones. The Tempe is a little older and her life is much different than the TV character's. So, if you are looking for something that's just like Bones in these respects, you won't get it. However, the Tempe in the book is the same in the way she goes about solving the crimes, in how she over-steps the boundaries of her position, and she has the mind like no one you've ever met before and that you can only get in and understand to a certain degree. She is also respected by everyone and liked by most. The book has its own appeal, different from the show, yet the same


About halfway through the book I forgot I was reading a "Temperance Brennan" book and it got its own life. I love and identify with the logic-based cold-on-the-outside-vulnerable-on-the-inside Temperance Brennan of television. The Temperance Brennan of the book is a recovering 40-something alcoholic, with a college-age child, who embraces her emotions. I love the author's descriptions of people and things. It's got a detective-like objectivity to it, while still remaining interesting. When she walked into a room of male detectives, I just knew that one would turn out to be a love interest, and I looked for a hint of which one it would be in her descriptons. No hint at all. Much later in the story, she mentioned some piercing stares and I had to go back and re-read her descriptions. Nope. Totally objective.So far, I plan on reading the rest of the series (which doesn't say much), and not being ashamed about it (that does). :) I enjoyed every gorey detail. Not for the cringe-crowd, but really enjoyable if you don't mind a little blood.


I groaned at the title until I learned that the book is set in Quebec, a city divided into Anglophones and Francophones. I groaned more with the pop culture references that have not held up over time and the endless use of clunky similes and metaphors. I have a lot of respect and admiration for what Kathy Reichs has done as a forensic anthropologist but am not a fan of this first book in the Temperance Brennan series. I hate to say that the fluffy, soap opera-like "Bones" TV show is much more entertaining than the book series upon which the show is oh so loosely based.

Linda O

1997. 532 pgs. I believe this is the first of the Temperance Brennan series. Takes place during the first year after Tempe's breakup from her husband, Pete. As always, Tempe seems to find herself in the middle of the scene where bodies are found, and she is compelled to try to solve the crime on her own. We meet Andrew Ryan, Det. SQ, and her antagonist Luc Claudel (Det. Hom. CUM), along with Dr. Pierre LaManch, who's the head of the office of the medical examiner in Montreal.Reichs presents Tempe in a very human, if somewhat super-woman, way. She is forthright about Tempe's alcohol problem and how, after 6 years not drinking, she is still struggling with the temptation. Tempe's college-age daughter, Lily, and her estranged husband, Pete, are shown realistically in the confusing post-separation relationships. I enjoy learning about Montreal, as Reichs spends a lot of time describing the workings of the Quebec criminal investigation system, along with very detailed descriptions of Montreal as a city. It makes me think I'd like to visit that area some day.

Troy Blackford

Adequate Yet Strangely UnsatisfyingThis book was entertaining, creepy, and engaging. It also struck me as kind of ridiculous in places and grating throughout.The mystery was decent. The technical perspective (i.e., seeing the crime procedural from the vantage point of the forensic scientist instead of the detectives) was refreshing. The crimes were macabre and disturbing.The main problem for me was voice. This is a first-person tale, told from the perspective of 'Temperance Brennan.' I just didn't like her much. As a person, she's cool. Her way of relating information and talking, however, is irritating. At one point (this book is from 1998 and set in 1994, so let that temper your opinion of the following) she describes the process of sending an e-mail to her daughter. Since that was relatively new in 1998 when the book was released and certainly was in 1994 when the story was set, this can be excused. What can't, however, is the way she does it. After describing the technical aspects of HOW she is able to send the e-mail, she says (and, unfortunately, I quote). "Yahoo! Everyone hop aboard the internet."Ridiculous asides like this abound. She eats fast food chicken and follows off a description of the meal (the book is FULL of descriptions of EVERY meal) with a KFC reference by saying "Thanks, Colonel." No thanks, Kathy Reichs! I feel like it's meant to give a somewhat stream of consciousness perspective into Brennan's mind, but I guess I just don't like it. It's not her fault that I wouldn't want to hang out with someone who communicated like this, and I'm sure lots of people would find it funny, but it just gives this overriding tone that has nothing to do with the story or the characters that rubbed me the wrong way.Also, some of the plot developments are hard to swallow. They find the killer's secret hiding place, with a map on the wall with two Xs where they have already found bodies, and a third X where they haven't looked yet. "Maybe that's another body!" says intelligent Brennan. "We should look!""It's probably nothing," says obstructionist, woman-hating detective man.That's the end of the police's interest in that third X, and it takes an enterprising Brennan to go out there in the middle of the night on her own to look for the body herself (during which time she is assaulted and knocked unconscious, not killed, and then the fact that someone assaulted her--presumably the killer--is never again referenced in the book aside from a time a little later when she wonders what happened).Anyway, I still enjoyed this book and will try reading the others but I must say, I wish that the character of Brennan struck me as more likeable in tone. She's just fine in action and behavior. But other than that, it was a fun read.


First of all, I would like to say that I cannot believe I've finally finished this book. And second of all, it's one of those books which are very hard to review once you're done reading them. It just leads up to the cliche: I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it either. I found the first three books as a set at the London airport for only £5, and I was super-excited to start reading them since I've been searching for the first book, Deja Dead, for quite some time. I'm such a big fan of the show Bones, and in my world everything is better on paper, which is why I guess I had such high expectations from this book.I guess I shouldn't even be comparing the book and the TV show, but I cannot help it. Because in the show, I loved the parts where they examined the bones as much as I loved the parts where they chase criminals. In the book, however, the lab parts seemed to drag forever, to the point where I seriously felt like I've been reading the book forever. And then, of course, it got impossible to keep reading it for more than one chapter, and I found myself forgetting where the actual 'action' part of the investigation left off. I found myself getting very excited when the action picked up, only to be let down when it slowed way down again. The books takes place in Montreal, which was pretty cool, but I thought the French in it was a bit overdone, which was another part of the book that seemed to slow me down.All in all, it's an interesting book, and Reichs is in no way a bad writer. Yet you feel this is first book while reading it, and knowing she's a forensic anthropologist in real life, you very much feel how she feels every single detail is necessary. I feel like this would be a much better, much exciting book if it was edited tighter and maybe like 100 pages shorter. I'm still curious about how the series will continue, though, so I'll read the next two and see where they take me.http://zimlicious.blogspot.com/


This book is not for the faint of heart, but rather for those that love the details of forensic investigation down to the nitty gritty of the fluids released by a decomposed body. If you want to learn how bones can speak about and for their victims than this is the book for you! Deja Dead by Kathy Reichs. The main character Dr. Temperance Brennan is a forensic anthropologist, who after separating from her husband relocates to Quebec to become the bone expert at Laboratoire de Me’decine Le’gale. Thus, when a badly decomposed body with a decapitated head is found in trash bags, it is Tempe that is called in to examine the bones. As Tempe begins the painstaking task of identifying the victim and analyzing the bones, something about the dismembered body and how it was disposed of seems somewhat familiar. That niggling memory soon surfaces and she remembers...a sixteen year old female…dismembered…placed in plastic garbage bags. Was it simply a case of déjà vu? Or is there a serial killer on the loose? As Tempe begins searching for cold cases with similar scenarios of dismemberment, her fear and curiosity grows as she discovers other similar murders, but how does she convince Claudel, the homicide detective in charge, to take her theory seriously after all her job is bones not solving murders? She can’t stop thinking about the victims, and her obsession to solve the murder causes her to take dangerous chances. Will her determination pay off or simply endanger her life and the ones she loves? Read Deja Dead by Kathy Reichs to find out.


DEJA DEAD - VGReichs, Kathy - 1st Temperance BrennanWhen the bones of a woman are discovered in the grounds of an abandoned monastery, Dr Temperance Brennan of the Laboratoire de Medecine Legale in Montreal is convinced that a serial killer is at work. The detective in charge of the case disagrees with her, but he is forced to revise his opinion.Very good dialogue, good suspense. Better than Cornwell recently. Will read the next.

Kathy Davie

I can't believe I missed this one after having read everything else in the series. It felt odd to read this beginning of the Temperance Brennan series at the end of the series...more like deja vu for me!And it reminded me why I love reading this series. Intrigue, mystery, history, great characters, beautifully detailed (and involving) details in a well-written story.


This was such a disappointment!!!! I enjoy the show "Bones" especially the solving mysteries/crimes with science and genius, and I thought that I would read some of the books by the real-life criminal expert, that the show is based on. Well, what a let-down!!!! The story was interesting (although very different from the show, ie: she's much older, she works in Montreal not DC, there's no Jeffersonian Institute with cool science toys, etc,), and the crime just sucks you in, but it was completely filled with AWFUL language! I'm talking even f-bombs being dropped on a regular basis!!!! You know, if she's really that smart, you'd think she would be able to express herself without resorting to cursing to help the reader understand the seriousness of a situation, or that a particular dectective is hard to work with. Anyway, I got about 50 pages in, when I realized that I didn't care how good the story was, I couldn't read a book with such junk in it. Which is actually killing me, because now I'll never know how they solve the whole thing. Oh well. I'll just keep enjoying the show, and thanking my lucky stars for the FCC's broadcasting restrictions.


It's summer and it's hot. I went on a Netflix binge and got through all available episodes of "Bones". It's not a bad show, but I never watched the show until this binge because it's so different from the books.So once I ran out of episodes I decided to go back to the books. The first time I read them it was out of order, based on what the library had, and what I could borrow from other people. I missed reading the first one (this one) completely.I love these books. I love the writer. The show doesn't do the books justice. The writing style is conversational, easy, and slightly "Noir Detective". Tempe comes across as a real person with strengths and insecurities and a sense of humour. Compassion AND intellect.The story is good. Convincing. Tempe breaks the rules and gets in trouble for it. There isn't that weird, magical shield that seems to cover non-law-enforcement people on TV. I like that.I'm looking forward to rereading the others, and checking to see if I've missed any others.

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