How Forensic Anthropologists solve crimes and uncover mysteries of the dead.
Photographs by Charles Fellenbaum
Little, Brown & Co., March 2001
ISBN 0316829617 - Large Format Paperback
Science / Ages 5 to 9

Reviewed by Beverly Rowe,
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If you like unsolved mysteries, you'll love this new book about Bone Detectives.

Award winner Jackson takes us step by step through the investigation of a murder case, and tells the fascinating tale of how specialists in the field of forensic anthropology sort out clues to discover the identity of the victim, and how the person died. The "case of the shining skull" is the main focus of this book. A human skull, some bone fragments, and a distinctive button were found in a boy scout campground in Missouri. Jackson explains what forensic specialists look for, and what various clues mean; how they tell the age and gender of the person, and how different clues help identify them. Full color photos follow the reconstruction of a life like model of the victim's face that leads to the arrest and conviction of her killer.

This exciting science discovery book discusses the investigation of a three million year old fossil skull, bones that belonged to Jesse James, and the skeletal remains of a half Indian scout that was found on the battlefield of Custer's Last Stand. The lifelike reconstruction of the face of "The Iceman," a recently discovered five thousand year old mummified corpse from the Alps is fascinating.

This book is a well researched introduction to forensic anthropology and scientific discovery applied to the real world. The marvelous photography shows the steps of the investigation in detail. and takes some of the mystery out of a sometimes gruesome subject. No matter what your age, you will find yourself glued to this well written, exciting book.

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