As a big fan of the TV Show, Bones, I decided I should read at least one book in the series that inspired the show. I watch the show because I like the characters so much and because of the science used to solve the crime each week. I knew there would be some differences between the show and the book but I didn't realize how many.
Let me first say that, like the show, the book was very clinical in its descriptions. Unfortunately, it takes a lot longer to muddle through a written, jargon-filled, clinical explanation than it does to watch it on TV. I found the technical explanations in the book got in the way of the action; you lose the momentum of the scene.
However, Reichs is good at the slow build necessary in a suspense novel. We meet Temperance Brennan working in Canada as a forensic anthropologist. Female bodies start coming in with enough similarities to put Brennan on the track of a potential serial killer, but the police don't believe her. In an effort to prove her hypothesis about the murders, Brennan starts investigating on her own, gets into trouble, and becomes a target for the killer herself. While some of the action is a little predictable, the book definitely got my heart racing in a few places.
It was really the characters that bothered me most and is the primary reason why I won't be delving into this series. Brennan in the show is actually a much better character than Brennan in the book. She's just too vulnerable in the book, too prone to emotional overload. I like the steadier version of the character we see on TV. Then, because the story takes place in Canada, there's no Booth. There's a Booth-esque character in that, of all the police, he's most inclined to listen to Brennan and she keeps checking out his butt so there's an attraction there too. More central in the story is Claudel - an extremely rude investigator whose prejudice against Brennan just doesn't match up to her high level of qualifications for the work she's doing. Claudel is too much of a hater.
Overall, this is a good, procedural crime suspense novel. It has all the components - murder, mystery, surprises, danger, etc. - so if you go into reading it with just a scientific interest in crime and no preconceived notions stemming from a TV show, you'll do just fine.