Remember a while back I picked up Bloodlines after watching Bones. I was in the mood for gritty American crime novel Which wasn't what I got. Well I finally picked up book one in the series of books written by the same author who wrote Bones. Probably what I should have done in the first place. Now, I should point out that I was very much aware that the Temperance Brennan of the books is completely different to that of the tv show. I knew she was older, had a potential drinking problem, a failed marriage and a teenage daughter. I just wasn't quite prepared for how different the characters actually were. Book Tempe is far less clinical and very much works with her emotions. It's also set in Quebec which I also wasn't exepecting. Not that the setting bothers me that much. If anything I quite enjoyed it although it did remind of other books set in New Orleans (possibly because of the heatwave in the first book).
I have to say the book was a little slow in starting. I don't normally have a problem with first person narrative but in this case it did irritate me. It felt like she was explaining herself too much or going into more detail about her day to day life than I really needed to know. It also felt like the author feels her readers aren't that bright (I am sure this isn't true). I didn't need to be reminded again and again that French is the dominant language of Quebec. I got it the first time. I don't mind the fact that French was dotted through the book. It adds atmosphere. I just don't need to be told it's Quebecan French over and over again. Only one other thing irritated me and that was the constant mention of Tempe's struggle with drink. I realise it's a part of who she is and it is important during some parts of the novel. I felt though it was brought up just a few times too many and sometimes in irrelevant places.
Other than that I quite enjoyed it. I liked that this Tempe is very different. I liked the plot itself too. I did actually think I had it all worked out but turns out I was wrong. A sign of a good book is when the ending is surprising. I think I have to remember that this was a first novel and all the things that irritated me in this one is probably down to that. I can definitely say there was one thing I did love about Tempe, she grades handshakes. I do that too which is probably why I find it so amusing. I will definitely be reading others (because I enjoyed it not because of the handshakes).
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