Body Farm Novel, # 6
March 27, 2012/ ISBN 978-0061807046
by Heather Buchanan
What's special about the pairing of Dr. Bill Bass and Jon Jefferson
into the pen name of Jefferson Bass is that they have figured out
a great formula for combining their professional talents in a way
to make unique novels. Dr. Bass is a forensic anthropologist and
Jefferson is a veteran journalist. This mystery novel does a great
job of weaving forensics and crime scene analysis throughout the
Dr. Bill Brockton of East Tennessee's Body Farm, the protagonist,
is an advocate for the use of forensic science in solving crimes.
He is pulled into a case by Angie St. Clair of the Florida Department
of Law Enforcement, who is studying Brockton's techniques. Angie
is the sister of a woman who died under suspicious circumstances
years ago, and she wants Brockton's help; meanwhile, the long-buried
skulls of adolescent children are discovered in a field by a dog.
What ensues is an investigation of the case using both investigators'
talents, joined by Special Agent Stu Vickery. There is also a personal
side story that preoccupies Brockton while he works on the case.
In this edition of the Jefferson Bass series, the book also serves
as an expose of the Florida penal system, so it informs as well
as functions as a creative work. The authors describe The Bone Yard
as "faction," that is, fiction deeply rooted in reality.
Despite the book's intense subject matter, Jefferson Bass uses poetic
language and symbolism within notable scenes such as with unmarked
graves. While there's grisly detail, The Bone Yard will
be an engrossing read for fans who like CSI-style forensic mystery
Reviews of other titles in this series
Carved in Bone, 1
and Bone, 2
Devil's Bones, 3
of Betrayal, 4
The Bone Thief, 5 [review
Yard, 6 [review